by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
Notably during proceedings several dignitaries representing the national government and Chinese companies visited, the most notable being Roger Milla, the celebrated footballer.
Furthermore, for all there was plenty to see; additional to the major events, the Power China Cup involving Chinese corporate employees, the Confucius Institute and the members of the Chinese Embassy, participated in individual and team events.
Overall 53 players competed in the national event, the numbers being 24 men, 16 women and 12 junior boys. In the corporate event a total of 48 players were in action; of the group 42 competitors were from Chinese corporate bodies, three from the Confucius Institute and three from the Chinese Embassy. Notably the team from the Chinese Embassy was led by His Excellency Wen Weihua, the Chinese Ambassador.
Selectively, the international event witnessed a total of eight players, two Chinese men and women from the Zhengding International Training Centre in Heibei Province; the same from Cameroon.
In the National tournament, Dereck Nyoy, the current Cameroon champion won the Men’s Singles title beating Nelson Soh Nji in the final. Beatrice Enjema donned the Women’s Singles crown at the expense of Harriet Ntumyuy, whilst Benis Vomo who represented Cameroon at the recent Francophone Games in Abidjan, was crowned Junior Boys’ Singles champion. In the final he overcame Ahmed Nemba.
Entertaining contests, it was the same in the Corporate Tournament. China Power beat the Chinese Embassy in the final by three matches to nil; the individual competition witnessing success for Sun Chen in opposition to Huang Huaquan.
Meanwhile, in the International Tournament, in both Men’s Singles and Women’s Singles events, it was gold and silver for China. In the former Wang Rui beat Zhang Zhihua to claim the title; in the latter Zhang Ziwei overcame Dai Tan to reserve the top step of the podium. In the Mixed Doubles event with the two nations joining forces, Prosper Ndikum Asaah and Dai Tan secured the top prize at the final expense of Dereck Nyoy and Zhang Ziwei.
Matters concluded with Wen Weihua urging members of the Cameroon Table Tennis Table Federation to work hard in their efforts to try to unearth a player who can match the achievements of Nigeria’s Quadri Aruna.
In order to support Cameroon in its efforts to raise standards, the three winners of the national event have been invited in 2018 to attend the Zhengding International Centre.
Additionally blades, rubbers, nets and balls were presented to the Cameroon Table Tennis Federation but the most significant item, as Wen Weihua concluded his speech, was that within the campus of the Sports Centre, a purpose built table tennis training centre is planned.
Proceedings concluded with members of Cameroon government thanking Wen Weihua for his attendance and support.