By Neha Aggarwal
Men’s Team Group Stage
The group stage of Men’s Team event is divided into four groups with four countries in each group. Number one seeded Egypt ended the day with a 3-0 win over South Africa and a walk-over from Cameroon. With these two victories, Egypt heads group A with 4 points. South Africa and Gabon are tied at 3 points each and Cameroon finished with 2 points. With the final round of group stage to be played on day two, finals places in each group will be determined.
In group B, Nigeria, the second seeded team in the tournament also dominated its group with a 3-1 win over Tunisia and a walk-over from Cote d’ivoire. Africa’s hero and world number 25, Quadri Aruna was on duty against Tunisia and with no surprises, won both his games to help Nigeria win 3-1. After beating Tunisia’s Hman Adem in the fourth game Quadri explained,
“I think playing against him has always been difficult because I played against him five days ago in the Arab Club Championships and I noticed that he has improved a lot. The match was a bit hard because he was most times leading me in the match. I think I will continue to improve with each match because being the first day, it was always very hard.”
The third seeded team, Congo Brazzaville showed their dominance in Group C as they head the charts with 4 points, Algeria and Morocco tied at 3 and Libya with 2 points.
Similarly, in group D, Togo, the number four seeded team wrapped up day one with a 3-1 win over Senegal and a walk over against Madagascar which gives them 4 points and thus a lead over rest of the teams.
The final round for all four groups will be played on 25th October at 11:30am local time on all eight tables.
Women’s Team Group Stage
The Women’s Team group stage has been divided into two groups- A and B, with four teams in each group. Top two teams from each group will qualify for the semi finals.
In group A, Egypt, the top seeded team in the tournament, finished off their day by winning over both Congo Brazzaville and Tunisia 3-0 and thus earning 4 points to head the group. Congo Brazzaville and Tunisia are both tied at 3 points each with one win and one loss. Madagascar, that put up a good fight but lost both its matches secured 2 points at the end of the day. All four teams will play the final round on second day of the tournament.
The biggest surprises came from Group B as the second seeded team of the tournament, Nigeria had a no show due to visa issues and thus forfeited both their matches. Algeria and South Africa took advantage over this situation by registering a 3-0 victory over Morocco and thus earning 4 points each for themselves. The big match against both the teams on 25th October will determine who qualifies top in the group.
The final round of the Women’s Team group stage will be played at 10:00am local time.