Tennis ranking stimulates Aruna, Nigerian women lose places

reigning African table tennis champion Quadri Aruna is delighted to have moved up a step in the current International Table Tennis Federation World Ranking for men’s singles. PUNCH Sports Extra report reports.

Aruna, who last week defeated Egyptian rival Omaar Assar 4-3 in the hard-fought final at the ITTF competition in Algeria, now ranks 14th in the world after his remarkable performance in the competition.

The 33-year-old amassed 500 points on the ITTF competition to beat Germany’s Tim Boll, who previously occupied the 14th spot.

Commenting on his rising position, Aruna said, “Indeed, it’s a kind of comfort. I am very happy, everything happens for a reason. I hope to improve on this. Algeria is a country I will never forget. It’s my first time there and I won, it will be a lasting memory for me.”

Aruna’s compatriot, Taiwo Mati, rose 63 places to the 91st place in the ranking, his highest place ever.

The 17-year-old, who reached the semifinals of the men’s singles in Algiers, where he eventually lost to Aruna, racked up 175 points in the competition.

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He becomes the sixth African top player in the world, behind Aruna (14), Omar Assar from Egypt (22), Saleh from Egypt (66), Ibrahima Diaw from Senegal (72) and Mehdi Bouloussa from Algeria (86).

Bode Abiodun and Olajide Omotayo also dropped seven and eight steps in the reporting month to take 121st and 125th place respectively.

Duo Azeez Solanke and Rilwan Akanbi dropped to 223rd and 326th after losing 14th and 25th places each.

Samuel Boboye dropped 12 places to 246, while Orok Etim and Amadi Omeh are 414 and 415 respectively.

Among the women, Nigeria’s top player, Fatimo Bello, also dropped five steps from 60th to 65th place. Bello is the only Nigerian in the Top 100 for women.

Edem Offiong dropped three steps from 112 to 115, while Funke Oshonaike is currently in 146th place after losing seven places in the rankings for the month of September.

Abosede Odusanya and Cecelia Akpan both lost 11 places to become 221 and 251 respectively in the world.

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Esther Oribamise and Ajoke Ojomu, who both shone at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, also dropped to 316th and 317th place.

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