The new courts were unveiled over the weekend when they hosted the Rock Classic International tournament
Uganda Squash Rackets Association chairman J.B Ahimbisibwe Tamwesigire believes the addition of two glass squash courts in Eastern Uganda at the Rock Classic Hotel in Tororo, will not only boost the sport countrywide but also help in unearthing new talent.
The new courts were unveiled over the weekend when they hosted the Rock Classic International tournament that attracted top players from South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia, Kenya, Tanzania, Nigeria and hosts Uganda. England's Tom Ford won the three-day event, walking away with sh5.5m.
"It's a wonderful facility. It is going to help in introducing the game to the East. We shall soon bring in coaches so that they can hold clinics for the people of Tororo. We thank the proprietor Haji Sula Sseremba for thinking about Uganda because this is going to benefit the whole country," Tamwesigire said.
Having played the sport for over 30 years, it was just out the passion for the game that Rock Classic Hotel owner, Sseremba decided to add squash among the other sports amenities that the hotel offers to its clientele.
"I have played squash for over 30 years, so it was easy to think about the sport. It's an all weather sport that can be played at any time. Even then, when I looked around Eastern Uganda I realized there were no squash courts except in Jinja and our hotel being near the border, even Kenyans from as far as Nakuru can come and play from here," Sseremba stated.
He said there is need to start promoting other parts of the country with good facilities so that not all good facilities are concentrated in Kampala only. He argues that other areas should get good facilities in order to spark further development in those areas.
The seats in the gallery at the new Rock Classic Hotel Squash courts, April 21, 2019
"Most hotels have amenities like swimming pools, steam & saunas, tennis courts etc depending on the location but as we move on all our four-star hotels should have such facilities so that our clients can have a variety of services; that is what we are working on improving at Rock Classic Hotel. We want to reach the level of other hotels,"
He could divulge the amount of money he spent on the two courts that have sets of modern seats with a sitting capacity of over 60 people saying the project was just part of an ongoing facelift at the hotel.
"The money invested is not important to divulge because the courts are within the hotel which is also undergoing expansion we have other sports facilities like a swimming pool, we intend to add tennis and badminton courts so they are part of the amenities that should be at the hotel to help our guests have a good time while at the hotel," Sseremba noted.
He said they were going to work with schools within Tororo to introduce the sport to as many students in order to produce many squash players.
The hotel has added a snack bar, an executive committee room with a dining room to the current health club while a casino, a discotheque, modern conference halls , four cottages and a serving center for the cottages are all work in progress at the moment at the hotel.
Reactions to the new courts
Issa Bbaale - These courts are greatly going to help market the sport in Uganda. Squash has been mainly played in Kampala but when such facilities start emerging in other areas it will greatly boost the sport in Tororo but now even travelling squash players can make a stopover at the hotel and play the game because they know there are squash courts at the hotel. Tororo dwellers are going to form a squash club and start recruiting youngsters who will further grow the sport.
Rock Classic Hotel proprietor Haji Sula Sseremba
Shem Muganga - I have played around East Africa but haven't seen such courts elsewhere and I would like to thank the proprietor Haji Sseremba for thinking about the game. The hotel also has great services and very kind staff and very good rooms and I have been very impressed by even their health club.
Mike Kawooya - These are the best squash courts in the country and they are going to help in the growth of the sport in the country. More tournaments are going to be organized here as we try to extend the game upcountry. We are going to bring more equipment and clinics so that we introduce the sport to the locals.
J.B Tamwesigire - "It's a wonderful and beautiful facility. It is going to help in introducing the game in the East. It'snot found for a person to think wise and wide for Uganda. So by the virtue that he has constructed two glass courts, the game is going to be wonderful in future. We need to run some of our calendar tournaments here because the hotel has a variety of amenities including a gym.