Lagos - Participants at the Nigeria Table Tennis Federation
(NTTF) camp for the selection of players for the International Table Tennis
Federation (ITTF) World Junior Championships in Cape Town, South Africa say
victory is their watchword.
The players told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on
Wednesday at the Knock-up Hall of the National Stadium, Lagos training venue
that making the team was their utmost desire.
20 players made up of 12 boys and eight girls are being
camped for the championships scheduled to serve off on Nov. 30 and end Dec. 7.
The invited male players are Abayomi Animasahun, Azeez
Solanke, Amadi Umeh, Michael Abayomi, Augustine Emmanuel, Jamiu Ayanwale,
Ololade Oyenekan, Tobi Falana, Etim Orok, Babafemi Babatunde and Umar Ibrahim.
The girls are Tosin Oribamise, Agnes Onoja, Ajoke Ojomu,
Alimot Ayinla, Rofiat Jimoh, Iyanuoluwa Falana, Vivian Akpan and Sukurat
The players are being tutored under the watchful eyes of
seven-time Olympian, Segun Toriola, as part of his efforts to inspire young
Some of the players were part of the team that featured at
the ITTF African Junior Championship in Algiers where they qualified for the
Also, the outstanding players at the national U-16
tournament in May also made the camp.
The countries that will represent Africa at the world junior
tournament are Egypt, Nigeria, Algeria and Tunisia.
Animasahun, selected from among the U-16, told NAN that his
target was making the eventual team to South Africa.
Also read: Aruna Quadri crashes out after losing to Ma long
He said that he was putting in his best to ensure that the
wish came to light.
“It is a tough one because every player in camp has the
potential of making the team. It is our personal best that will be considered
during the final selection.
“I am focused and will exhibit my skills so as to make the
list,’’ he said.
Kogi-born Ibrahim promised to give his all at the training
to make it to South Africa which, he noted, would ultimately help him to
progress in his career.
He said that he aimed at playing with others from the
participating countries, adding: ``I want to use the competition to expose
myself the more and improve my skills.
“I love challenges and I see the going to the championships
as a very big one for me to showcase my talent.”
Umeh, who plies his table tennis trade in Ekiti, said that
he had been training prior to their call to camp and expressed the hope of
making the team.
He said that he trained daily after school and at weekends
under his coach, Dotun Omoniyi.
“I am on a constant training programme even when a
competition is not at hand. This is to always keep in top form,’’ he said.
A female, Akpan from Cross River, said that he ultimate
desire was to represent the country and make a name in Cape Town.
She added that none of the female players in camp would
“We are all in a competition fighting for placements, and I
won’t give room for intimidation.
“I believe that I have what it takes to make the team and I
just need to be focused and consistent,’’ she said.
Another female player, Aiyelabegan, said that if selected,
she would make the country proud, adding: "I am aiming at winning medals at
the competition,’’ she said.
For the latest on
national news, politics, sport, entertainment and more follow us on Twitter and
like our Facebook page.