by Olalekan Okusan, ITTF Africa, Press Officer
Inspired by Nigeria’s Quadri Aruna, alongside national star, João Monteiro, Sporting continued the fine form experienced throughout the current season.
Quadri Aruna started the march to victory with a straight games win over Enio Mendes (11-7, 11-9, 11-8), Portuguese international, Diogo Carvalho increased the lead for Sporting by accounting for Nigeria born Congo Brazzaville’s Saheed Idowu in a similar manner (11-9, 12-10, 11-4).
Matters concluded with Bode Abiodun and João Monteiro recording a four games win over Saheed Idowu and Nigeria’s Jide Ogidiolu with a 3-1 (11-7, 14-12, 8-11, 14-12).
Since joining Sporting two seasons ago, Quadri Aruna has been instrumental in the progress witnessed; especially he has been paramount to the success theclub advancing to the European Champions League quarter-finals.
“I am happy that we were able to retain this title because we worked hard. It was not an easy win because every team in the league is now getting quality players. I must thank the management of Sporting for their huge support. We will be playing the first leg of the ETTU Champions League this week against France’s Stella Sporta La Romagne and I hope that this win will help our confidence going into the Champions League quarter-final match on Friday.” Quadri Aruna
Stella Sporta La Romagne will select from China’s Chen Tianyuan and Wei Shihao, alongside Romania’s Adrian Crisan and Frenchman Brice Ollivier; the fixture will be played in Lisbon.
Overall 99 teams, comprising 83 men and 16 women’s outfits, participated in this year’s Portuguese Cup competition. CTM Mirandela retained the women’s title after beating GDCS Juncal three-nil in the final.
Liu Yangzi gave the champions elect the perfect start by beating Olga Kim (11-4, 15-13, 11-5), before Gabriela Feher accounted for Leila Oliveira (11-4, 11-3, 11-6) and the doubles combination of Liu YangzI and Anastasiia Golubeva defeated Leila Oliveira and Tatiana Garnova to end matters (11-6, 5-11, 8-11, 11-9, 11-6).
Success for Sporting and success for the first ever winners; they won the Men’s Team title at the inaugural tournament in 1967, on that occasion the Women’s event was won by Atlético da Amadora.