by Olalekan Okusan, ITTF-Africa Press Officer
Safely through the first phase of play, a place in the decisive group, where players finishing in first and second positions gained Tokyo qualification, was secured.
After losing to Senegal’s Ibrahima Diaw (9-11, 11-9, 11-5, 11-9, 11-7), he accounted for Togo’s Kokou Dodji Fanny (11-7, 11-8, 11-9, 11-5), prior to gaining a walk-over against Quadri Aruna, the Nigerian being forced to withdraw owing to a thigh injury.
The outcome for the 25 year old was second place a ticket to Tokyo.
“After I competed at the Youth Olympic Games in Singapore in 2010, it has always been my dream to qualify for the Olympic Games. I have made several attempts at making it to the event but I could not.
Also, my brother, Gdana, who competed at the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games in Australia has been an inspiration for me to work harder to make it to the Olympic Games.
It has been my objective as a player and this is what prompted me to move to France where I play for Manfort in the French League. The decision has really helped my game and I am a happy man today because I have made it to the Olympic Games at last.
My brother used to tell me that the Olympic Games is a special event because it affords any sportsman or woman the opportunity to meet some of the best athletes in the world, I cannot wait to fly to Tokyo. I plan to train hard for the Games.” Adam Hmam .