Egyptians arrive, as Lagos ITTF World Tour draws hold Monday
THE draws for the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) World Tour, Lagos Open, will hold Monday to officially mark the beginning of the competition, which has been dominated by Egyptians since inception in 2013.
Already, the North Africans’ 12-man contingent has arrived in Lagos for the competition, which preliminaries serve off Tuesday.
Tournament director, Olaranti Lajide, disclosed Sunday that all the players and teams are expected to be present at the draw scheduled for the Teslim Balogun Stadium today, adding, “the appointed official from ITTF all arrived on Sunday for the event.
“There will be short briefing for all the officiating officials, which will be followed by the draw to determine how the matches will be played from the preliminary stage. Unlike in the
previous editions, where players competed in four events, this year, six events, including singles (men and women), doubles (men and women) and U-21 singles (boys and girls), will be jostled for at the five-day tournament with a prize money of $46,000.”
Lajide also disclosed that all the participating teams and players were expected to arrive latest Monday.
“Some of the European players have arrived and we are expecting everybody in Lagos latest by Monday,” he reiterated, adding that the format of the tournament is knockout as players are expected to give their best to make it to the main draw.
Meanwhile, Portugal’s Silva Diogo believes his first visit to Africa would be an exciting experience, adding that he has set a semifinal target for himself.
Diogo, teammate of Nigeria’s Aruna Quadri with GD Toledos in the Portuguese elite league, will partner compatriot, Andre Silva in the men’s doubles.
“This is my first time in Africa and I am very excited coming to Nigeria to play in the Lagos ITTF World Tour. My expectations for the tournament are to play my best table tennis and try to enjoy to the maximum. I really believe that if I surely play my best, I will achieve good results,” he said.
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