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SPORTS UPDATE TENNIS

ITTF ranking: Aruna jumps to record-setting 13th position

The performance of Quadri Aruna at the just concluded ITTF World Table Tennis Championships in Houston, Texas, has fetched the Nigerian another African record following the release of the latest ITTF ranking.

From the 17th spot occupied in the world before the world championships, Aruna set a new African record as the first to be ranked 13th player in the world.

Aruna’s quarterfinal finish in the United States facilitated his four step upward movement in the latest ITTF rankings released yesterday.

“I am so excited to gain points to shore up my world ranking, and this means more work for me because to remain on top you have to work hard,” Aruna said.“ This is another challenge for me in my career and I will not relent to do my best as I look forward to the WTTF Cup Finals taking place this weekend in Singapore.”

Yet the runner’s up at the 2021 World Championships, Truls Moregard of Sweden has become the biggest mover on the latest ITTF ranking as the 19-year-old moved from 77th spot to 31st in the ranking, while newly-crowned world champion Fan Zhendong of China held on to the top spot in the ranking.

Meanwhile, President of the Nigeria Table Tennis Federation (NTTF) Ishaku Tikon, said ‘s feat in Houston would surely motivate upcoming players to work harder.

“We are so excited that within one week, Aruna has set two African records as the first to reach the quarterfinal of the World Championships as well as the first African to be ranked 13th in the world,” he said.

“ This for us as a federation means we must find another Aruna who can exceed what he has done.

“Our focus remains the cadet and junior and we are going to ensure we organize tournaments and expose them to international competitions.

“I must also commend Aruna for his conduct within and outside the table because he has shown to be a good ambassador of the sport and we hope to compliment this feat by ensuring we unearth more Arunas,” Tikon added.

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