11 Aug 2017

Convincing performances were very much the order of proceedings in the first round of the Men’s Doubles event at the 2017 ITTF Challenge Seamaster Nigeria Open in Lagos on the early afternoon of Friday 11th August.

However, as happens time and time again, the exception proves the rule.

by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor

The exception was the Romanian pairing of Alexandru Cazacu and Rares Sipos; they emerged successful but, against the host nation’s Olajide Omotayo and Ojo Onaolapo, they needed the full five games in order to gain victory (11-5, 11-8, 11-13, 10-12, 11-8).

Defeat for Nigeria but there was success. Abdulrahaman Abdullah and Sola Oyetayo joined forces to beat Cameroon’s Alain Patrick Jague and Prosper Ndikum Asaah (8-11, 11-8, 11-5, 11-9); the win coming after Quadri Aruna had partnered Egypt’s Omar Assar to victory over Bode Abiodun and Seun Ajetunmobi, like Quadri Aruna from the host country (10-12, 11-7, 11-8, 11-7).

Success as anticipated, it was the same for the French pairing of Antoine Hachard and Gregoire Jean, they accounted for the combination of Nigeria’a Nurudeen Hassan and Saheed Idowu (5-11, 12-10, 11-9, 11-7).

Impressive from the French duo, it was the same from the Indian pairing of Sarthak Gandhi and Sanil Shetty; they beat Egypt’s Youssef Abdel-Aziz and Mahmoud Helmy in a most emphatic manner (11-8, 11-8, 11-8).

Similarly, Egypt’s Mohamed El-Beiali and Ahmed Ali Saleh overcame Russia’s Andrey Bukin and Vasilij Filatov in a similar manner (11-2, 11-9, 11-8); whilst in the all European duel, Italy’s Alessandro Baciocchi and John Oyebode accounted for the partnership formed by Finland’s Benedek Olah and Hungary’s Marton Szita (11-4, 11-9, 5-11, 14-12).

Last eight places for Asia, Africa and Europe; also there is a place for Latin America. Argentina’s Rodrigo Gilabert partnered Bulgaria’s Yavor Andreev to success against South Africa’s Theo Gogill and Kurt Lingeveldt (7-11, 12-10, 13-11, 11-6).

At the quarter-final stage, in the top half of the draw Antoine Hachard and Gregoire Jean meet Rodrigo Gilabert and Yavor Andreev; Mohamed El-Beiali and Ahmed Ali Saleh confront Quadri Aruna and Omar Assar.

In the lower half, it is Alexandru Cazacu and Rares Sipos against Alessandro Baciocchi and John Oyebode; Abdulrahaman Abdullah and Sola Oyetayo in opposition to Sarthak Gandhi and Sanil Shetty.

The matches will be played later in the day.

2017 ITTF Challenge Lagos (Nigeria) Rares Sipos Alexandru Cazacu

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Day 3 - 2017 ITTF Challenge Seamaster Nigeria Open

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