Category Archives: Table Tennis

Olajide Omotayo Shines As Nigeria Dominates Men’s Table Tennis Singles Event At African Games

Olajide Omotayo gave an inkling of what he has in stock again at the 12th African Games as the Nigerian defeated one of the continent’s most celebrated star – Egypt’s Ahmed Saleh 4-3 in the quarterfinal of men’s singles to berth in the semifinal of table tennis.

Omotayo was all over the Egyptian in the encounter which had the fans glued to their seats throughout the match.

The Nigerian combined his backhand with forehand smoothly and this confused the Egyptian who surrendered to the youthful Nigerian star.

Aside Omotayo, Aruna Quadri also walloped Congo Brazzaville’s Saheed Idowu 4-0 to berth in the last four and set up a rematch of the ITTF Africa Cup against Egypt’s Omar Assar on Thursday August 29.

Seven-time Olympian Segun Toriola was at his very best when he also beat Egypt’s Khalid Assar 4-3 to set up a semifinal clash against Omotayo.

In the women’s event, Olufunke Oshonaike played her last game after going down 3-4 to Egypt’s Farah Abdel-Aziz. Dina Meshref also beat Algeria’s Lynda Logrhaibi 4-0, while Edem Offiong humbled Egypt’s Reem El-Eraky.
Cameroun’s Sarah Hanffou berthed in the last four after beating Egypt’s Yousra Helmy.

Offiong will battle Hanffou while Meshref will face her compatriot – Abdel-Aziz in the second semifinal on Thursday the August 29th.

Nigeria’s Olajide Omotayo

An elated Omotayo said: “I am so excited that in my first African Games I made it to the semifinal. I knew that it was going to be a tough game against of the most experienced African players and I just ensured that I did not get angry on table because he did everything to upset me but I was determined. I was calm and I am happy that this is a good outing for me in the singles.”

Tunisia to host Africa Table Tennis Olympic Qualifying Tournament

The city of Tunis in Tunisia will host the African Olympic Qualifying Tournament for the Tokyo 2020.
Tunisia was chosen ahead of the Algeria during the 33rd Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the African Table Tennis Federation (ATTF) held in Rabat, Morocco on Saturday August 25, 2019.

13 delegates that formed a quorum at the AGM voted with Tunisia getting eight votes while Algeria got five votes to concede the hosting rights to Tunisia.

Egypt had already secured the sole slot for the team event for Africa as two of its players are expected to compete in the singles and doubles event of the Tokyo Olympic Games while the qualifying tournament in Tunisia will produce another four male and four female players to complete Africa’s slots for the Games in Japan.

Nigeria narrowly lost the slot to Egypt in the men and women’s event at the finals of the 12th African Games with Egypt winning the two events at 3-2 with Omar Assar and Dina Meshref spearheading the North African triumph.

ATTF 33rd Annual General Meeting delegates

Africa’s highest ranked player, Nigeria’s Aruna Quadri will be joined by players from Tunisia, Congo Brazzaville and others at the Qualifying Tournament in Tunisia and each nation is expected to register two men and two women players for the qualifying tournament. Four men and four women will qualify to Tokyo from Tunisia.

According to the President of Tunisia Table Tennis Federation (TTTF), Lotfi Guerfel, the country has the necessary experience to stage a befitting tournament. “We have the required experience to stage a world class tournament and the Olympic Qualifying Tournament would not be an exception. We will be hosting the Africa Top 16 Cup as well and we are ready to welcome the whole continent,” the TTTF boss said.

Madagascar is expected to host the 2020 Africa Cadet and Junior Championships while Cameroon will stage the African Senior Championships.

African Table Tennis Teams Battle For Tokyo 2020 Slots

The battle for Africa’s slots in the men and women team events of Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games begins on Wednesday August 21 at the 12th African Games holding in Rabat, Morocco.

18 men’s teams and 12 women’s teams will battle for the continent’s sole slot in the men and women’s event of Tokyo 2020.

The continental powerhouses – Nigeria and Egypt are top seeds in the men and women events with Nigeria men aiming to defend the title they won in 2015, while the Egyptian ladies led by Dina Meshref will also be keen to hold to the title.

African champion Dina Meshref of Egypt

Both teams have been handed an easy ride to the knockout stage with Nigeria drawing Madagascar and Kenya in Group A of the men’s event while Egypt is in Group B alongside Congo DRC and Eritrea.

In the women’s draw, Egypt as the top seed are in Group A with Kenya and Morocco while Nigeria has been pitched against Uganda and Congo Brazzaville in Group B.

The top seven teams in the event will also secure qualification to the 2020 World Team Championships holding in Busan, South Korea.

Aruna Quadri and Segun Toriola

MEN:

Group A (Nigeria, Madagascar, Kenya);

Group B (Egypt, Congo DRC, Eritrea);

Group C (Congo Brazzaville, Mauritius, Angola);

Group D (Algeria, Senegal, Ethiopia); Group E (Togo, Ghana, Djibouti);

Group F (South Africa, Tunisia, Morocco)

Aruna Quadri

WOMEN:

Group A (Egypt, Kenya, Morocco);

Group B (Nigeria, Uganda, Congo Brazzaville);

Group C (Algeria, Mauritius, Congo DRC);

Group D (Tunisia, South Africa, Ethiopia).

Two teams from each group advance to the next stage with the winner in the men and women events qualifying for Tokyo 2020.

Nigeria’s Aruna Quadri Stuns Japanese Star To Hit Semifinal of Bulgaria Open

Aruna Quadri stunned one of the most decorated Japanese stars in table tennis to reach the semi-final round of the ITTF World Tour tagged Bulgaria Open.

Quadri’s Match was the last quarterfinal in the men’s singles and the Bulgarian fans were treated to an exciting moment as there were unbelievable scenes in Panagyurishte after the Nigerian Table Tennis hero knocked Japanese no.4 seed Jun Mizutani in a seven-game thriller.

Aruna Quadri

After the Match The 2019 Nigeria Open champion expressed his appreciation to the Bulgarian fans for their unrelenting support during the encounter.

Trailing 1-2 on games, Aruna Quadri who is well known for his comebacks and his fighting spirit shone through on this occasion, saving two game points in game four before going on to recover from 4-9 down to win game five 11-9.

Mizutani responded well to claim game six, forcing a decider: 9-6 down Mizutani refused to give up the fight, going on to hold two match point opportunities.

However, Aruna Quadri showed nerves of steel, saving both points before going on to steal the win (8-11, 11-9, 6-11, 12-10, 11-9, 4-11, 13-11).

In an earlier quarterfinal tie, Portuguese qualifier Marcos Freitas is through to the last four in Panagyurishte thanks to a fantastic victory over no.15 seed Chinese Taipei’s Chuang Chih-Yuan.

At the start of play it was the Chinese Taipei player who looked good for the win, claiming the opening game by an eight point margin but Freitas also enjoyed his spells of dominance over the course of the match.

Ultimately it was game seven that produced the main story: 6-7 down Freitas opted to call a timeout, a decision that proved useful as the Portuguese star fought back to win the decider 11-9 and earn his spot in the penultimate round (3-11, 11-2, 11-3, 11-13, 4-11, 11-5, 11-9).

Aruna Quadri

Japanese teenage sensation Tomokazu Harimoto takes his place in the semi-finals of the men’s singles draw following a tight affair with fellow Japanese compatriot Takuya Jin.

Down 3-0 on the scoreboard Jin needed to form a response and one did arrive with the qualifier pulling a game back. Then in game five Jin held game point advantage on two occasions but failed to convert as top seed Harimoto held his nerve, sealing the win by a 4-1 margin (11-7, 11-6, 14-12, 7-11, 13-11).

German Dimitrij Ovtcharov’s men’s singles run has ended in the quarter-finals stage in Panagyurishte after the second seed lost out to world no.110 China’s Zhao Zihao in an exciting battle.

The 22-year-old pen-hold grip player from China started strongly and deservedly gained a healthy 2-0 lead.
Up against the ropes Ovtcharov raised his performance, winning two of the next three games to reduce the deficit to 3-2. In game six the two players gave it their all but there could only be one winner and that proved to be Zhao Zihao (11-6, 12-10, 8-11, 11-6, 5-11, 11-9).

In the semifinal tie scheduled for Sunday August 18, Aruna Quadri will face China’s Zhao Zihao, while Portugal’s Marcos Freitas will take on Japan’s Tomokazu Harimoto.

Nigeria’s Quadri May Battle Egypt’s Assar in Semifinal at Africa Table Tennis Cup

From the knockout draw conducted on Saturday August 3, number one seed, Aruna Quadri of Nigeria may slug it out against Egypt’s Omar Assar in the semifinal of the men’s singles at the 2019 ITTF Africa Cup holding at the Molade Okoya-Thomas Hall of Teslim Balogun Stadium.

From the eight groups, two top players from the groups advanced to the knockout stage and Quadri has been drawn against Congo DRC’s Gedeon Kassa, while Assar will battle Congo Brazzaville’s Christ Bienatiki.
The knockout stage of the tournament starts on Sunday August 4, 2019.

But Senegal’s Ibrahima Diaw who is making his debut at the continental Cup, believes he can stand out in Lagos.

“I am really impressed with the quality of play and the organisation, which shows that Africa has come of age. The condition of play is very good. It is just like what obtains in Europe and I am really happy making my debut at the continental tournament,” he said.

The Denmark-based rising star believes he has what it takes to conquer Africa. His words: “I think I have the chance to win this competition because I am playing well at present. Everybody is also playing well but I am here to make a name for myself and do my country proud.

“There is no doubt that the quality of players in the competition has again confirmed that Africa has the talents. I am particularly impressed with the organisation. I was a bit surprised that we could have such a conducive atmosphere.”

Reviewing his triumph over Idowu in his first game, Diaw said: “I was a bit nervous in the first game because we used to play against each other in Europe. I was losing the first set at 4-8 but I was able to recover and win the game.

“But after winning the second set, I was confident that I could win the contest and when he tried to come back in the third game, I was stronger than him mentally. He is such a good player.

2019 ITTF Africa Cup: We’ll Continue To Raise The Bar – NTTF…

With the staging of the 2019 ITTF Africa Cup, the President of the Nigeria Table Tennis Federation (NTTF), Engr Ishaku Tikon has said that Nigeria would continue to raise the standard of table tennis with the hosting of major competitions in Africa. Nigeria is hosting the African Club Championships, ITTF Africa Cup and ITTF Challenge […]

via 2019 ITTF Africa Cup: We’ll Continue To Raise The Bar – NTTF… — finixsportsblog

2019 ITTF Africa Cup: We’ll Continue To Raise The Bar – NTTF…

With the staging of the 2019 ITTF Africa Cup, the President of the Nigeria Table Tennis Federation (NTTF), Engr Ishaku Tikon has said that Nigeria would continue to raise the standard of table tennis with the hosting of major competitions in Africa.

Dina Meshref

Nigeria is hosting the African Club Championships, ITTF Africa Cup and ITTF Challenge Plus Nigeria Open and the NTTF boss said the world now looks toward Nigeria in terms of organisation of world class competitions.
“We will continue to raise the bar as regards table tennis in the country and Africa, said Tikon.

for the Local Organising Committee (LOC) Chairman, Wahid Oshodi, fans would be treated to exciting matches in 10days. “We’re hoping to give them huge entertainment and I want them to come over to the stadium and enjoy the games,” Oshodi said.

ARUNA Quadri

For Aruna Quadri, the Lagos fans should expect the best from him. “Everyone wants to win and I want to win as well and to give my 100 percent best. Although it is always difficult playing in front of home fans as it is also a motivation,” the 22nd ranked player in the world said.

According to the Executive Chairman, Kweku Tandoh, the tournament has made Lagos a hub of sports in Africa.
“The benefit of hosting this event is to grow tourism in Lagos State, as the aim of the state is to emerge as the hub for tourism, entertainment and sports in Africa, ultimately putting Lagos on the world map,” Tandoh said.

Dina Meshref

In his remarks, President of Africa Table Tennis Federation (ATTF), Khaled El-Salhy said the tournament would help to showcase the quality of players in Africa. “We want to show that we have world class players in Africa, like Aruna Quadri and Omar Assar at the next ITTF World Cup. Lagos is like home of table tennis in Africa,” the ITTF boss said.