Aruna Quadri will face defending champion Ahmed Saleh of Egypt in the semi-finals of the ongoing 2022 ITTF Africa Cup Table Tennis Championship at the Molade Okoya-Thomas Hall, Teslim Balogun Stadium, PUNCH Sports Extra reports.
Nigeria’s No.1 Quadri wasted no time in edging out Tunisia’sAboubaker Bourass 4-0 (11-1,11-4,11-3,11-5) to reach the semi-final of the men’s singles ahead of others.
Saleh on his part, came back from the brink of defeat to beat Nigeria’s Olajide Omotayo 4-2 (11-7,7-11,11-6,7-11,12-14,7-11) to secure a place in the last four.
The surprise package of DayTwo was Fatimo Bello,the Western Region champion,who defeated number four seed and fellow Nigerian,Offiong Edem, in a thrilling encounter which ended 4-3 (3-11,11-9,7-11,11-9,8-11,11-7,11-7) to progress into the semi-final in the women’s singles for the first time.
2021 African Champion, Mariam Alhodaby of Egypt, had to be at her best against 2010 Champion Sarah Hanffou of Cameroon.
The Egyptian won in a close encounter which ended 4-3 (11-2,6-11,2-11,11-5,2-11,11-6,11-8) to berth in the last four of the women’s singles.
Hana Goda of Egypt repeated the same result she recorded against Olufunke Oshoanike in 2021 by beating the seven-time Olympian 4-0 13-11,11-6,11-8,11-6) to set up a semi-final clash against compatriot Dina Meshref.
Meshref had earlier dispatched Tunisia’s Fadwa Garci 4-0 (11-3, 11-5,11-8,11-6).
Mohamed El-Beiali of Egypt and Bode Abiodun gave the fans a lot to cheer but it was the Egyptian who progressed after Abiodun sustained an injury at 2-3 to surrender the game to his opponent. Winners in the men and women singles will represent Africa at the WTT Cup Finals later in the year.