by Olalekan Okusan, ITTF-Africa Press Officer
Quadri Aruna beat both Han Qiyao (13-11, 8-11, 10-12, 11-2, 11-7) and Carlos Machado (11-3, 5-11, 11-7, 11-6), after Bode Abiodun had given Sporting Portugal the ideal start by also overcoming Carlos Machado (7-11, 9-11, 11-9, 11-8, 11-9). The one win for Cajasur Priego TM was recorded in the third match of the fixture when André Silva accounted for Diogo Carvalho (14-12, 11-8, 11-9).
“We won three-one but it was not an easy match, the Spanish team is a good side with an experienced player like Machado. The match against Han Qiyao was a bit difficult because I could not return his service initially. Later I started returning well; this really gave me a lot of confidence even when he was leading two-one. We hope we can round up the match in the second leg to be sure of playing in the semi-final.” Quadri Aruna
The return leg will be played on Friday 8th February in Portugal.
Good form from two Africans; it was the same from a third in the German Bundesliga; in a three-nil win for Borussia Düsseldorf against TTC Schwalbe Bergneustadt, after Timo Boll had beaten Paul Drinkhall, Egypt’s Omar Assar accounted Alvaro Robles (11-9, 4-11, 11-8, 11-9). The contest concluded with Kristian Karlsson overcoming Benedikt Duda to seal the victory.
After ten fixtures in the German Bundesliga, TTC Schwalbe Bergneustadt occupies fourth place one position ahead of Borussia Düsseldorf; TTF Liebherr Ochsenhausen leads with Post SV Mühlhausen and 1.FC Saarbrücken-TT the next in line.