18 Sep 2018

A semi-final finish on Sunday 9th September, it was for Nigeria’s Olajide Omotayo, a most satisfactory conclusion for the 23 year old at the recent 2018 ITTF African Championships in Port Louis, Mauritius.

After overcoming Togo’s Atarou Assou and Angola’s Elizandro André, he caused a major upset by beating Egypt’s Mohamed El-Beiali, the no.3 seed and then Shady Magdy, also from Egypt, to book his place in the penultimate round; the round where colleague, Quadri Aruna ended progress.

by Olalekan Okusan, ITTF Africa Press Officer
Defeat at the hands of Quadri Aruna but it was a much better performance than the previous month when he had departed in the opening round of the Men’s Singles event at the 2018 ITTF Challenge Seamaster Nigeria Open.

“I am satisfied with my performance in Mauritius because it has erased the poor outing at the ITTF Nigeria Open; this will also help me to push myself more and work harder because eyes will now be on me across the world. I remain grateful to the Nigeria Table Tennis Federation for believing and giving me the opportunity.” Olajide Omotayo

Now practising in Germany, the next step for Olajide Omotayo is the reach the level exhibited by Quadri Aruna.

“Apart from the crucial wins I had in Mauritius, I think I have learned that believing in yourself means a lot; this helped me a lot when I played against the Egyptians, for the first time I had the opportunity to face Quadri Aruna, this has surely helped me a lot in boosting my confidence. Being my second time competing in the African Championship and getting to the semi-final is a really big motivation. I will use this result to push myself, work harder and continue to believe in myself.” Olajide Omotayo

Next on the agenda for Olajide Omotayo is the 2018 ITTF Challenge Belgium Open; play commencing in de Haan on Tuesday 23rd October.

“My next competition is the Belgium Open and now I have the privilege to practise in Germany with a Bundesliga team. I strongly believe this will help me a lot as they have top ranked players in the team. I am sure with the help of the coach and players; I will improve. At the moment, I’m not getting any support from any corporate body, I am only getting assistance from the former President of the Nigerian Table Tennis Federation, Wahid Oshodi; may God continue to bless and enrich him more. In the last two years, thanks to kit support from Gewo and Mr. Oshodi plus some money from my own pocket I have been able to attend some tournaments this year. I must admit it has not been easy but God has been good to me.” Olajide Omotayo

Now, following the success in Mauritius, Omotayo Olajide is dreaming big.

“My target is to improve, without improving I won’t be able to win matches. Now I am motivated and this will really help a lot as I’m also hoping to get a sponsor; going to tournaments is not easy doing it alone. Having a good place to practise now and getting sponsors will let me achieve my aims this year.” Olajide Omotayo

Motivated, ambitious and most able, no doubt in the immediate future we will hear much more of Olajide Omotayo.

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