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Algerian table tennis players enter the running

HOUSTON (United States) – Algerian table tennis players, Sami Kherouf and Katia Kessaci, entered in the World Table Tennis Championship, scheduled from 23 to 29 November in Houston (USA), enter the running on Tuesday for the events singles (men and women) and mixed doubles, according to the competition program, published by the International Disciplinary Federation (ITTF) on its official website.

In men’s singles, Kherouf (149th in the world ranking) will challenge, in the preliminary round, the French Can Akkuzu (82nd in the world), while in the women, his compatriot, Kessaci (166th in the world) faces Slovak, Tatiana Kukuljova (139th in the world). ).

During the day, the two Algerian representatives (Kherouf and Kessaci) participate in the preliminary rounds of the mixed against the Indian pair made up of Sharath Kamal Achanta and Archana Girish Kamath.

In addition to Algeria, Africa will be represented at the American World Cup, by 15 other athletes, led by the two best table tennis players on the continent of the moment, namely the Nigerian, Quadri Aruna and the Egyptian Omar Assar and who will compete in men’s singles and ladies, men’s and women’s doubles and mixed doubles.

In men’s singles, Quadri, the highest ranked player in Africa, will face Belarusian Aleksandr Khanin (152nd worldwide), in the first round, while Assar, who rose through the ranks at the world level to 29th place this year after having successfully recovered the African title at the 2021 African Championships in Cameroon, will play against the Japanese Lim Jonghoon.

In the ladies’ category, the three-time African champion, the Egyptian Dina Meshref, will be the continent’s greatest hope. She will start her run in Houston against Mateja Jeger (Croatia) in the first round before teaming up with Omar Assar for the mixed doubles.

Adopting a redesigned and expanded format for the first time, the flagship event will feature 128 singles players (men and women) and 64 pairs in each of the doubles competitions (men doubles, women doubles, mixed doubles) competing in a knockout format.

The 2021 Championships took on even greater significance for the table tennis community when the 2020 event in Busan, Korea was canceled due to COVID-19. However, despite all the challenges, the table tennis family came together to make this year’s event a reality.

Here are the matches of the African table tennis players in the first rounds:

Simple Gentlemen:

Sami Kherouf (Algeria) – Can Akkuzu (France)

Omotayo Olajide (Nigeria) – Gustavo Tsuboi (Brazil)

Bode Abiodun (Nigeria) – Amalraj Anthony (India)

Ahmed Saleh (Egypt) – Truls Moregard (Sweden)

Khalid Assar (Egypt) – Adam Szidi (Hungary)

Ladies’ Singles:

Offiong Edem (Nigeria) – Doo Hoi Kem (Hong Kong)

Katia Kessaci (Algeria) – Tatiana Kukulkova (Slovakia).

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