by Olalekan Okusan, ITTF-Africa Press Officer
It is the major tournament on this year’s international calendar but for Sarah Hanffou it is a stepping stone; the prime event this year for her is the African Games to be held in August and September in the Moroccan cities of Casablanca and Rabat.
Success in Morocco and a place in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games is assured for the 32 year old who is also a member of the ITTF Athletes’ Commission.
“I am looking forward to this competition which will be the first international competition for me since the African Championship in Mauritius last September. I am also excited to meet my colleagues from the Athletes’ Commission and work on some specific topics.” Sarah Hanffou
No doubt a busy time ahead for Sarah Hanffou but first on the agenda is to pick up the racket and play.
“This will be my seventh outing at a World Championships; my goal is to be ready for the African Cup and the African Games later this year. Also the level at the World Championships is really strong. I will do my very best and try to go as far as possible. It will be a good reference to know where I am and what work to do ahead.” Sarah Hanffou
It is for Sarah Hanffou a balancing act; for many it is combining education with sport, for the 2010 African champion it is liaising with a successful professional career.
“These past months have been quite challenging personally and professionally. I was sworn in at the court in January and opened my law firm in the meantime. Unfortunately, I did not have the time to train as I wanted but I am determined to do my best.” Sarah Hanffou
Ready for the challenge in Budapest but Sarah Hanffou is well aware that from the very start, high quality opposition awaits.
“Players are coming all over the world; the tournament is one of the toughest competitions in the world, not to say the toughest. The level of the competition is amazing.” Sarah Hanffou.
Presently on the women’s world rankings, Sarah Hanffou is listed at no.191.