ITTF Premier Lotto Nigeria Open: More players hit Lagos as draws for tournament hold
More players from Europe and Africa on Monday touched down in Lagos for the prestigious ITTF Premier Lotto Nigeria Open which serves off on Wednesday May 18 at the Molade Okoya-Thomas Hall of Teslim Balogun Stadium.
Nigeria’s most successful table tennis players – Segun Toriola and Olufunke Oshonaike had their first training session on Monday in readiness for the kick off of the competition.
After the arrival of the ITTF-appointed competition manager, Egypt’s Mohamed Dawlatly as well as referee and his assistant, all is now set for the draws of the highest prize money tournament in the ITTF Challenge series.
Toriola, who will become the first African to be featuring in seven Olympic Games will be spearheading the campaign for Nigeria alongside 2014 ITTF Star Player, Aruna Quadri who is expected to arrive on Thursday May 17 from France. Oshonaike will also be using the tournament to tune up for her sixth Olympics appearance while Edem Offiong also trained on Monday for the championship.
Knowing the importance of the tournament, Toriola and Oshonaike wasted no time after their arrival as they had their first training session at the NTTF Training Centre in National Stadium, Lagos.
Also on Monday, players from Egypt, Ghana and Portugal arrived Lagos for the $46,000 prize money championship serving off on Wednesday May 18 at the Molade Okoya-Thomas Hall of Teslim Balogun Stadium.
Players from Cameroon, Tunisia, Morocco and others are expected to arrive on Tuesday May 17 for the draws scheduled for Teslim Balogun Stadium.
According to the Secretary General of Nigeria Table Tennis Federation (NTTF), Chinedu Ezeala-Ogundare, the stage is set for the championship as all arrangement and preparation have been concluded for a successful competition. “We are ready and everything seems to be in shape for the kick off and being the only ITTF World Tour to be staged in Africa this year, I hope and believe some of the players will surely be aiming for the prize money as well as use it to garner world ranking points,” she said.