Nigeria women’s table tennis star, Cecilia Akpan, says the aim of the Nigerian team at the Third International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) Challenge Open is to make sure the foreign stars do not dominate.
This year’s edition runs from August 9th to 13th inside the Molade-Okoya Thomas Indoor Sports Hall, Teslim Balogun Stadium, Lagos.
Over 100 players from about 22 different countries will storm Lagos for this year’s edition.
According to ITTF-Africa, Akpan, 31, who won the women’s singles title when the ITTF Nigeria Open was test run in 2013 as Lagos Classics expressed delight over the quality of players that will feature this year.
“For me, this is another chance for us to prove that we can still rub shoulders with the world’s best,” Akpan said.
“The quality of the players this year is no doubt exceptional and in the history of the competition, this is the best assembly of players we have ever had. So it is time for us Nigerian players not to allow the visitors to come and cart away all the prize money and medals. We will surely hold them in all the events.”
On how prepared she is for the tournament, Akpan said:“After returning from Morocco, I have not missed any training because I know I must be at my best if I am hoping to contest with the foreigners in the competition.
“Things are working well for me and I am in top form and eager to commence campaign from the preliminary which starts on August 9. I want to take each game as they come hoping that I will make it to the main draw where anything can happen.”