Following her triumph in the just finished African Senior Table Tennis Championship in Algeria, Nigeria’s top table tennis player Aruna Quadri has expressed her joy.
Since 2018, Quadri has competed in the African Championship final, where Omar Assar of Egypt has repeatedly defeated him.
The German star had to rally from the verge of loss to overcome Assar 4-3. (8-11, 9-11, 11-8, 6-11, 11-7, 13-11, 14-12).
In an interview with the media, Quadri acknowledged his sadness at losing in Lagos but was relieved to have ended the final curse after participating in four straight finals. “We are here because everyone wants to win. Although I’ve always thought I could win, I wasn’t sure it would be achievable. I’m glad I finally won since I’ve always participated in the championship game and, as a result, have lost each of the previous four years. Before it ends, it’s still not over. We got off to a 0-0 start, but I missed numerous opportunities. I persisted in my struggle and didn’t give up.
“I am aware that if I am playing to win, I will succeed because if I weren’t, I wouldn’t have prevailed. However, I never stopped believing in myself. Yes, this is a consolation for me since I think I should have won the 2022 ITTF Africa Cup in Lagos. Although nothing in sport is guaranteed, I was in the best position when I was 3-3, 4-0 up, but this is sports, anything can happen, so I was hurt and lost. The fact that I won here for the first time will go on in my memories forever, he said.
The championship of men’s singles in African table tennis was hard-won by Quadri over Assar, his bitter rival. With this victory, he was finally able to turn things around and reclaim the top spot in African table tennis. He won his first African championship in 2018, making this his second.