Nigeria’s Aruna Quadri has inscribed his name in history as the first table tennis player in the continent to attain the 25th spot in the September ranking released by the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) yesterday.
Quadri was one of the stars at the Rio Olympic Games in Brazil after stunning the world to become the first African to play in the last eight of the Games.
From the 2,305 points he had in the pre-Olympic ranking in August, Quadri added 152 points from his performance in Brazil reach 2,457 point mark to achieve his new status as Africa’s best player ever in the September ranking.
Apart from rising to 25, Quadri in the latest ranking was also listed among the most active players in the world based on his rise from 40th in August to 25th in September.
Other active players in the recent rating include; Brazil’s Hugo Calderano and England’s Paul Drinkhall. Calderano who like Quadri, became the first player from South America to play in the quarterfinal of the Olympic Games.
The Brazilian who was rated 54 in August is now ranked 31 in the world, while Drinkhall moved from 58 to 32 in the globe grading.
Also, a member of the ITTF ‘7’ Club, Nigeria’s Segun Toriola was rewarded for his effort in Rio as the seventh time Olympian moved from 120 to 106 in the latest ranking, while Egypt’s Omar Assar remains the continent number two.
Assar who was edged out in the second round of the Rio Olympic Games by Ukraine’s Lei Kou dropped from 55 to 56 in the world.
Despite dropping to 118 from 110, Egypt’s Dina Meshref remains the top ranked African female player, while Nigeria’s duo of Edem Offiong and Olufunke Oshonaike were not lucky as well with Offiong dropping from 120 to 129 while Oshonaike dropped from 241 to 251.
Olympic and World Champion, China’s Ma Long held on to the summit of the ranking again as the Asian star and his compatriot – Shiwen Liu remain number one ranked male and female players in the world.