by Olalekan Okusan, ITTF-Africa Press Officer
Success in Cairo but at the 2018 ITTF Challenge Nigeria Open staged earlier this month, Mohamed El-Beiali did not enjoy the greatest of success, he was beaten in third round by Romanian teenager, Rares Sipos.
Now in Mauritius a major challenge awaits Egypt; especially as the North African country will be without Omar Assar.
“My dreams and goals are to ensure that we do not miss Omar Assar, particularly when playing against a strong team like Nigeria. I must admit that we will surely miss him in the team but with the youth of Khalid Assar and the experience of Ahmed Ali Saleh we can conquer Nigeria in the team event. My partnership with Khaled Assar will also rule the Men’s Doubles. Personally, my target is the Men’s Singles title. I hope I can win it this time around.” Mohamed El-Beiali
Notably, Mohamed El-Beiali is aiming for the top 100 in the ITTF Men’s World Rankings this year and believes the standard of the game has improved tremendously in Africa, particularly with the giant strides made by Quadri Aruna and Omar Assar.
“I must say that Africa has come of age in table tennis with the exploits of Quadri Aruna and Omar Assar. They have set a benchmark for us in the continent and this has accorded us respect in the world. I look forward to an exciting tournament in Mauritius.” Mohamed El-Beiali
Mauritius awaits; Mohamed El-Beiali is well aware there is a tough challenge ahead.
“For sure without Omar Assar against Nigeria, it will be a difficult match for us but we will try our best. We are really preparing thoroughly for the Championships. We have a training camp in Cairo, two sessions each day. I think we can do something in Mauritius but I must admit that it is not going to be easy at all.”
An intriguing contest awaits, the question posed is of the continent’s leading nations who will prevail, Egypt or Nigeria? Maybe Mohamed El-Beiali holds the key?