Nigeria Table-tennis player, Haruna Quadri has been named among the top 20 players in the world that will participate at the ITTF Men’s World Cup, scheduled for November in China.
This was confirmed according to a statement released by the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) at the weekend, the men’s and women’s World Cup will kick-start the restart of international table tennis competitions after several months of suspended activity due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
There could be the Nigerian-Egypt battle, as both Haruna Quadri and Ahmed Saleh will compete in the men’s event while African Cup women’s champion Dina Meshref of Egypt is the sole representative of Africa in the women’s World Cup.
According to ITTF, both World Cup will feature 20 female and 20 male athletes, including the World Champion, qualified players from all completed continental events (Africa, Europe and Pan America) and players selected by world ranking from the other continents (Asia and Oceania) as well as the whole world according to the provisional World Cup playing system. The players from Asia are the same who would have played at the 2020 Asian Cup, had it not been cancelled due to COVID-19.
Quadri was selected based on the world ranking which makes him the highest ranked African in the world rated 20th in the globe and he will be parting in his third consecutive World Cups being the first African to qualify to the quarterfinal of the competition following his exploits at the 2014 edition in Dusseldorf, Germany.
The men’s star-studded field include China’s Ma Long who is considered by many as the greatest table tennis player of all time, and he will be looking to add the 2020 Men’s World Cup to his burgeoning trophy cabinet.
Europe is providing plenty of strength, especially in the form of German pair, Timo Boll, who qualifies off the back of his 2019 Europe Cup victory, and Dimitrij Ovtcharov, the former world no.1 entering as a wild card.