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ITTF African Championships: Aruna, Meshref are continental champions

Nigeria’s Quadri Aruna and Egypt’s Dina Meshref emerged as singles champions at the 2018 ITTF African Championships concluded in Mauritius on Sunday September 9, 2018.

Quadri did not drop a point from the first round (round of 64) until the final when he defeated Egypt’s Ahmed Saleh 4-1 to win his first African Championships title which he narrowly lost to Egypt’s Omar Assar in 2016.

Also, Meshref, who lost the title to Nigeria’s Olufunke Oshonaike in 2016, reclaimed her title after a convincing 4-0 win over compatriot – Reem El-Eraky in the women’s singles final.

An elated Aruna said he is still eager to win the African Games which he is yet to have in his kitty.

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“I think I have won virtually all the titles in Africa, the only one I am still hungry to win is the African Games title which I believe I will continue to work hard in order to win it next year in Morocco.

“I am happy that I am winning this African Championships title for the first time particularly less than one month after I won the ITTF Challenge Nigeria Open in Lagos. I am grateful to the Mauritian fans for their support throughout all my matches,” he said.

Despite reclaiming her title, Meshref admitted that it was a bit hard to win back the laurel particularly with strong opposition from Nigeria’s Edem Offiong in the semifinal.

“I am happy winning my title back but it was not an easy task particularly with the match against Edem Offiong. But in all I am happy as I look forward to the ITTF World Cup which is my next tournament this year,” she said.

 

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