by Olalekan Okusan, ITTF-Africa Press Officer
After Naneshwaree Jalim had given Mauritius the lead by beating Samar Hichri (11-6, 11-5, 8-11, 11-8), Oumehani Hosenally accounted for Fadwa Garci, one of the leading names in tournament, she kept her nerve to win a five games contest by the very narrowest of margins (5-11, 11-6, 8-11, 13-11, 13-11).
Mauritius 2-0 ahead but it was not to be a memorable victory, Sandhana Desscann experienced defeat at the hands of Maram Zoghlami (16-14, 11-9, 11-5), before Nandeshwaree Jalim was beaten by Fadwa Garci (11-4, 12-10, 11-1) and Oumehani Hosenally lost to Samar Hichri (7-11, 12-10, 13-11, 11-2).
Eventual defeat but the bespectacled Oumehani Hosenally did herself great credit. She is the youngest member of the Mauritius seven player team competing in Accra; it is her courage that makes her stand out from the crowd. She is always ready to take on any opponent regardless of their pedigree and she performs well when it matters, she is eager to continue working hard.
A grade two pupil of Lycée Léonard de Vinci, which is a senior high school with sixth form college in Levallois-Perret, Paris, France, she believes table tennis offers great benefits.
“I love table tennis because of the mental exercise that you engage in when playing the game. Also it is a fun sport in which only one person emerges as champion.” Oumehani Hosenally
It is for Hosenally Oumehani her second major international appearance. Last year she earned her a place in the African team for the 2018 World Cadet Challenge in Japan; now she has a new challenge.
“My main aim now is to make the Mauritius team for the next Indian Ocean Games and I am hoping to win medal as well. Playing in the Games would surely improve my chance of competing more for my country.” Hosenally Oumehani.
The Indian Ocean Games will be staged later in the year in Mauritius; in addition to the hosts, Seychelles, Comoros, Madagascar, Mayotte, Réunion and the Maldives are expected to compete.
A clear goal and she has a more long term goal, one that her inspiration achieved.
“I was young and I had the chance to watch the video of Michael Maze and this really inspired me to love the game. I am also hoping that I can represent Mauritius at the Olympic Games,” Hosenally Oumehani added.