By Olalekan Okusan
The battle for supremacy in the singles between Nigeria and Egypt continues at the ITTF African Junior and Cadet Championships on Friday April 12 in Accra, Ghana.
With the conclusion of the team events, the individual events – singles and doubles take centre stage at the ongoing ITTF African Junior and Cadet Championships holding in Accra, Ghana.
Nigeria and Egypt are the cynosure of all eyes again in singles and doubles as the race for new champions in the event reach crucial stage on Friday April 12.
In the boys’ junior and U-21, Nigeria’s Azeez Solanke and Egypt’s Mamoud Helmy have been tipped as favourites having guided their teams in the team event with Helmy yet to taste defeat in the competition. The only defeat suffered by Solanke was against Helmy in the semifinal of the U-21 which was won by Nigeria.
Already, some players have been shown the exit in the doubles and mixed doubles events while the singles event enter knockout round as the seeded players take to the table in their quest to mount the podium.
From the number of medals won so far, Nigeria seems to be topping with three gold medals and two silvers while Egypt are playing second fiddle to the West African giant in the competition.
In the women’s singles, the battle for the titles will be among Nigeria, Egypt, Tunisia and Algeria.
According to African Table Tennis Federation (ATTF), the quality of play continues to improve especially with the commencement of the singles event with over 180 players competing for the six gold medals at stake in singles and doubles events.