David Oringa, Athlete Ambassador of International Grassroots Program of Baku 2017, is a tennis player from Uganda. With an innate talent in football, boxing hockey and tennis, he chose the latter as his career. He began playing in junior tennis championships, and moved on to professional tennis, with the ATP tournaments. However, he wasn’t destined for greatness right from birth.
“Everything can change in a moment”
David Oringa's childhood was marked by hardship and opportunity. He was born in Naguru, a Kampala city suburb on 9th October 1993 in a family of six children. Oringa began playing tennis when he was just eight years old.
He was one of the most talented kids, predicted to have a wonderful future, but out of a sudden his life was turned upside-down, when his father passed away.
It was a tough time for Oringa’s family. David’s mother was forced to raise him and his 5 siblings on her own.
“Life was a struggle throughout my childhood, as we moved from apartment to apartment while my mother tried to find solid work. I had to quit school as we had no money to pay for it. But I never gave up on tennis. I knew that my dad would have wanted me to play”.
Help came from nowhere. Stranger noticed David during his trainings and suggested him to join Uganda Charity Trust Fund.
“UCTF has since then supported me through my education and sporting career opening up a lot of opportunities. I came back to school and continued my trainings as hard as I could”.
“Olympics is a dream of my life”
All of the hard work and struggles Oringa faced through his journey to professional sport eventually paid off, letting him to participate in well-respected tournaments.
Oringa represented Uganda in the U14 East African Junior championship (AJC) in Kenya, 2004 Lugogo Junior championship winner, 3 times finalist in 2009, 2010 and 2011 at the Tennis Africa Cup in Uganda, and a 2010 quarter finalist in Junior Olympics that was held in Rabat, Morocco.
He then won the most coveted prize on the local Tennis calendar – The Uganda Tennis Open Tournament in 2012.
This victory made him the youngest player to ever win the event and for his historic feat, he was rewarded the plaque for the sportsman of the month from the Uganda Sports Press Association.
“I dedicate all my victories to my father. I love him so much, and I love tennis. I know he is always watching over me from heaven”, said David.
In 2015 he competed in the ATP tournaments in Nigeria, Mozambique and Zimbabwe in preparation for the Islamic Solidarity Games
“For me it is not all about the results I achieve during events. It is more about sporting spirit, meeting new people and gaining experience. You should only compete with yourself and try to beat your own records”.
“I will not be a tennis player forever”
Oringa has taken the education path as serious as his tennis journey. At the moment he is a diploma student of business administration at Uganda Christian University (UCU) in Mukono.
“I know that I will not be a tennis player forever. That is why I decided to enter the university. I think that is my biggest personal achievement, because there was a time when I was not able to continue my education even at school but now I almost graduated from University”.
“There is nothing more precious than children”
David Oringa always wanted to help the ones in need. Besides helping his own family, he is an often guest of orphanages. Oringa says that playing with these kids and teaching them is what truly makes him happy.
“The key for me is giving back. I am happy and willing to help these children and hopefully inspire them to go for sports. Not long ago I was in the same position and all I needed was a helping hand. There is nothing more precious than children. That is why I decided to take part in the International Grassroots programme of Baku2017 Islamic Solidarity Games the main goal of which is sharing your experience with young generation”.