09 Aug 2018

Bound for the Buenos Aires 2018 Youth Olympic Games, due to start in less than two months’ time, there was a surprise defeat for the host nation’s Esther Oribamise in the Women’s Singles qualification tournament at the 2018 ITTF Challenge Seamaster Nigeria Open on the first day of action, Wednesday 8th August.

The highest rated player in her group, she suffered at the hands of colleague, Rashidat Ogundele; she was beaten by the very narrowest of seven games margins (11-7, 8-11, 11-6, 8-11, 6-11, 11-7, 15-13).

by Ian Marshall, Editor

However, for both players, a place in the main draw looks bleak, 14 groups in the initial stage of proceedings, players finishing in first positions plus two “Lucky Losers” drawn at random from those finishing in second places, join the 16 seeds in the main draw.

In the opening match in the group, Rashidat Ogundele was beaten in straight games by China’s Wang Shu (11-2, 11-2, 11-4, 11-2). Esther Oribamise now faces Wang Shu in the concluding group stage contest.

Defeat against a Nigerian colleague for the leading name in the group, it was the same for Ganiyat Aruna; she suffered against Fatimo Bello (11-8, 11-9, 11-7, 11-9). However, just as Rashidat Ogundele lost her opening match, so did Fatimo Bello; she was beaten by India’s Maria Rony (11-2, 11-9, 11-5, 9-11, 11-2). Ganiyat Aruna and Maria Rony meet in the concluding match in the group.

Problems for two prominent names on a day when Nigerian players were here there and everywhere; for two other host nation names of pedigree in the qualification stage, it was opening match success. Fatima Kazeem beat Dacha Mongondi from Congo Democratic (11-8, 11-9, 8-11, 8-11, 11-8, 11-8); Janet Effiom accounted for colleague Anuoluwapo Ajuwon (11-7, 12-10, 11-2, 11-5).

Meanwhile, as play commenced in the Under 21 Women’s Singles competition, the prominent player to experience problems was Nigeria’s Alimot Ayinla, the leading name in her group she was beaten by Maria Rony (11-2, 11-4, 11-3). Notably, in her opening contest, she had lost to Wang Shu (11-5, 11-7, 11-9).

Only players finishing in first positions in each of the seven groups plus one “Lucky Loser” drawn at random from those who concluded matters in second places join the eight seeds in the main draw.

Disappointment for Alimot Ayinla; for the two other names of international note on first stage duty it was a successful day. Compatriots Abosede Odusanya and Agnes Ojomu ended the day unbeaten.

The qualification tournament concludes on Thursday 9th August.

2018 ITTF Challenge Seamaster Nigeria Open: Newsletter (Tuesday 7th August)

2018 ITTF Challenge Seamaster Nigeria Open: Newsletter (Wednesday 8th August)

Challenge Series 2018 Nigeria Open Esther Oribamese

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Day 3 - 2018 ITTF Challenge Nigeria Open