Aruna Quadri beats Omar Assar to qualify for ITTF World Cup
• As players demand better welfare
For the first time in recent times, Nigeria’s Aruna Quadri yesterday defeated his continental rival, Egypt’s Omar Assar in the final of the 2017 ITTF Africa Cup to qualify for the ITTF World Cup in France.
Having conquered Egypt’s Mohamed El-Beiali 4-0 in the semifinal, Aruna Quadri showed his class to beat Omar Assar 4-3 in the men’s singles final to the admiration of the fans at the venue.
Throughout the encounter, Aruna Quadri who played without any coach was calm throughout the encounter even when Assar was leading, he never gave up but continued to fight. Without any doubt the match has been described as a good showcase of African table tennis as both players played their heart out to the excitement of the fans at the venue.
An elated Aruna Quadri said he believes luck was in his favour as his opponent also played well. “I am so happy and I think luck was in my favour and I look forward to play in the ITTF World Cup later this year in France,” Quadri said.
In the women’s singles final, Olufunke Oshonaike surrendered to Egypt’s Dina Meshref in the final losing 4-0. Aruna Quadri and Dina Meshref will represent Africa at this year’s ITTF World Cups later in the year.
Meanwhile, for over 20 minutes, players at the Africa Cup decided to delay the championships to demand for improvement in their lots at continental level.
When the match was expected to kick off at 4.00pm, the players in group wanted to address the spectators about their situation. This led to a meeting between the players and officials of Africa Table Tennis Federation, led by its President, Khaled El-Salhy.