Nigeria’s Aruna Quadri helped GD Toledos to retain this year’s title of the Portuguese Table Tennis Cup concluded at the weekend in Porto.
Quadri, who was bundled out in the quarterfinal of the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) Africa Senior Championship in Cairo, Egypt last month was in superb form at the two-day tournament without dropping a match.
Playing from the preliminary stage to the semifinal, Quadri supported by his Portuguese teammates showed class and this was reflected in their semifinal tie against Juncal, a match which they won 3-0.
However, they were face with a Herculean task in the final as they were pitched against fans’ favourite, Sporting Lisbon. As the biggest of their campaign in the tournament, Quadri was once rose to the occasion despite dropping a game, they ensured that the cup remained with GD Toledos, as they won 3-1 to win the title for the third consecutive times.
An excited Quadri believes the success would surely spur him on for this week’s Kuwait Open.
“I feel so great winning the title again and team work materialized in delivering the Portuguese Cup once again. I have won the title thrice in a row and retaining the title again has increased my confidence for Qatar and Kuwait Opens. I think this weekend matches in the Portuguese Cup has prepared for the next coming pro tours due to the fact that I played some tough matches,” he enthused.
Meanwhile, the defeat suffered in the men’s singles at the ITTF Africa Senior Championship held in Egypt has adversely affected the fortune of the ITTF Star Player in the February world rating released by the world table tennis ruling body at the weekend.
For bowing to Egypt’s Mohamed El-Beiali, Quadri dropped from 30 to 32 in the latest ranking while his conqueror improved in his rating from 195 to 179 in the world.