Nigeria’s Aruna Quadri won the 2019 edition of the Nigeria Open Table Tennis Championship held in Lagos on Sunday.
Quadri, who won the competition back-to-back, said he overcame injury in the Round of 16 to emerge victorious.
He said this after defeating Austria’s Gardos Robert in a thrilling six contested sets, 15-13, 11-3, 8-11, 11-6, 10-12, 11-1 (4-2).
Quadri is the second player to defend the title after Omar Assar of Egypt. He won the last edition of the tournament, which is in its sixth year.
By retaining the men’s Singles Nigeria Open title, Quadri won prize money of $7,000, while Gardos got $3,500.
Speaking on how he almost got eliminated, Quadri said, “I had an injury in the Round of 16, but I still had to keep playing. I really want to commend the medical team because they really did well. I kept playing because I am a fighter; it’s not over until it is over.”
He, however, commended his supporters, saying, “They have always supported me, they have always believed in me. I don’t know why. Only God can reward them more than I can.”
Meanwhile, Russia’s Mikhailova Polina claimed the women’s singles by defeating compatriot Noskova Yana 4-3 in the final.