World table tennis rival series:
Aruna Qaudri lost in the first round
As is customary, Africa’s No. 1 table tennis player, Nigerian Aruna Qaudri, was sent off yesterday in the first round of the Table Tennis World Cup in Doha, losing 1-3 at the Lusail Sports Arena. .
In addition to the $75,000 prize money for the winner, WTT Contender Doha also has 400 points on the world rankings.
Qaudri, who was eliminated in the quarter-finals of last week’s WTT Contenders Durban, was defeated by Portugal’s Marcos Freitas in the early hours of yesterday in Doha.
Aruna’s defeat was a comeback victory for the Portuguese player, world number 34.
Aruna, 35, won the first set with a comfortable score of 11-5 but could not keep the momentum. Freitas soon discovered his strength and raced to 11-7, 11-9 and 13-11 in the remaining three sets.
The meeting in Doha was their fifth, but only the third in a singles event. The Portuguese are now leading 2-1.
WTT Contender Doha 2023 will continue until Saturday, January 21.
Also yesterday, top seeds Hugo Calderano and Jang Woojin won comfortably 3-0, while Andrej Gacina suffered a shock loss to Korean Cho Seungmin, ranked 60th in the world.