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Edem rues early exit from Durban 2023 WTTC

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Nigeria’s second best ranked female player, Offiong Edem has lamented her early exit at the on-going Durban 2023 World Table Tennis Championships (WTTC) even as she rallied support for the remaining African stars still in the race in South Africa.

Edem was beaten 4-1 by Hong Kong’s Zhu Chengzhu in the first round of the women’s singles and was also bundled out in the women’s doubles by their French counterparts.

She however, admitted that she would continue to work harder to get back to her form.

“I think I have a lot to work on; I have a lot of corrections to do on my training. I lost in my first round and this same thing happened at the last Olympic Games in Tokyo. After winning the first game, my opponent just changed tactics and I could not meet up with her pace and style of play.

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“This is something to really work on and I need someone who plays that style to be able to match them in subsequent events. I think I need to work on that and see how things unfold when we have the WTT Contender Lagos next month,” she said.

She hailed the South Africa government for making the continent proud with the staging of the tournament in a conducive environment.

She added: “It’s so wonderful to see this kind of atmosphere and a lot of people were so eager to come to South Africa for the tournament.

“Personally, I am very happy that I am part of it. Though I really had a tough draw, I did my best,.

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“So far so good , I really enjoyed myself playing the first World Championships in Africa in 84 years.”

Meanwhile, Egypt’s duo of Dina Meshref and Omar Assar yesterday became the first set of African players to advance to the third round of the singles event.

Meshref wasted no time to edge out Poland’s Anna Wegrzyn 4-0 while Assar had to come from behind to beat Kazakhstan’s Kirill Gerassimenko 4-2.

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