Nigeria’s Aruna Quadri has been left disappointed with his inability to make it beyond the quarter final in the men’s singles of the just concluded ITTF World Tour, tagged Hungarian Open.
Quadri who made history at the Rio Olympics as the best African performer ever in the men’s singles category was on the verge of making another record as the only African to make it into the semi-final in the World Tour. But he blew that chance against Germany’s Ruwen Filus.
Quite dissatisfied with how the quarter final tie ended, Quadri said he believes he should have seized the opportunity against his German opponent.
Having fought hard from the first round of the championship, Quadri thrilled the Hungarian fans with his superb style of play coupled with his ferocious forehand that most times dazed the German.
In a press statement from the Nigeria Table Tennis Federation, a disappointed Quadri said after his quarterfinal exit that he was unlucky not to pull through.
“I was fighting as hard as I could; recovering from three-one down. I changed things around going to 9-6 in the last game. I did not seize my chances today .It was not meant to be,” he lamented.
Seeded number nine in the men’s singles, Quadri played his heart out against Germany’s Steffen Mengel when he came from 2-1 down to win at 4-2.
Again in the second round match tie against Czech Republic’s Tomas Konecny, Quadri had to recover thrice to beat the Czech 4-3 to berth in the quarterfinal of the championship as Africa’s sole flag bearer.
The quarterfinal battle against Germany’s Ruwen Filus lived to expectation with all the quality of a last eight encounter.
According to ITTF Publication Editor, Ian Marshall, Aruna Quadri was in charge of the match but he missed it when it mastered most.
Marshall said: “It appeared Aruna Quadri may succeed; after trailing by three games to one, he levelled at three-all. In the seventh he led 9-6, he lost the next point but at 9-7, he had the service; the odds were in his favour but he was not able to convert the advantage. Ruwen Filus (11-9, 14-12, 2-11, 11-9, 6-11, 4-11, 12-10).”
For his performance at the Hungarian Open, Quadri has picked up some points for the qualification to the ITTF World Tour Grand Finals, while his pairing with Egypt’s Omar Assar has also garnered points for making it to the main draw of the men’s doubles event.