By Francis Ajuonuma
Top players in the top 20 range of the world ranking are jostling to make the final list of confirmed players for the first World Table Tennis (WTT) Series in Lagos.
Tagged WTT Contender Lagos is the first tournament after the World Championships taking place in Durban, South Africa as players begin hunting for ranking points to secure their places at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games in France.
Reliable source, revealed that the WTT organisers are having a tough time deciding on the number of players in top 20 that will join others in Lagos for the championships.
Some of the players that have been part of the ITTF Challenge known at Nigeria Open are queuing up to return to the city regarded as the home of table tennis in Africa.
WTT is also optimistic that the Local Organising Committee (LOC), experienced organisers of ITTF events in the past, are capable of hosting a befitting and exemplary tournament with the supportive Lagos fans.
The LOC Event Director Dr. Kweku Tandoh noted that the quality of players already signifying their interest to be in Lagos attest to the fact that the city has become one of the hubs of top class table tennis in the world, and the LOC has been working hard to ensure a smooth event.
“We’ve hosted several ITTF events in the past, and the experience we had acquired in the course of staging these befitting events has qualified us to deliver world class tournaments. We’re not surprised that players are eager to come to Lagos because the feedback from our previous events have shown that we are doing things right.
“The leadership of the LOC has mandated us to again deliver another seamless tournament that will continue to make Lagos one of the places to be when you are talking of top level table tennis events in the world,” he said.
Already, some local players aiming to pick their slots among the contenders have been warming up across Nigeria as the Nigeria Table Tennis Federation (NTTF) is planning a national trials to select some of the local-based players that will team up with their foreign compatriots in the main event scheduled for June 12 to 18 at the Molade Okoya-Thomas Hall of Teslim Balogun Stadium.