LAGOS, Sept. 14 (Xinhua) — Nigerian Quadri Aruna has recorded a new African milestone by becoming the continent’s first player to be rated in the top 15 in the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) rankings.
In the ranking released by the world table tennis ruling body on Tuesday, Aruna, who finished second in the men’s singles at the Cameroon 2021 ITTF African Championships, moved four places up to 15, becoming the first African to break Omar Assar’s record of 16th place, set by the Egyptian in January 2018.
Aruna’s undefeated streak came to an end in the final of the event in Cameroon when he fell 4-1 to Assar, but the previous World Table Tennis Player of the Year received ranking points for his achievement, allowing him to enter the world’s elite club.
In addition, his partnership with Bode Abiodun won the men’s doubles in Cameroon, and the duo has received ranking points to be placed 20th in the world in the men’s doubles by ITTF.
For emerging as the men’s singles champion in Cameroon, Assar rose eight places in the current ranking to 28th.
In the women’s ranking, Egypt’s Dina Meshref, bronze medallist in Cameroon and six-time African champion, remained at the top of the continent despite climbing to 35th in the latest ITTF ranking.
Meanwhile, China’s Fan Zhendong and Chen Meng remain as the best-rated players in the men’s and women’s ratings respectively.