With most of his matches in the just concluded ITTF World Junior Championship being against Asian players, Nigeria’s Tobi Falana has admitted that the...
With most of his matches in the just concluded ITTF World Junior Championship being against Asian players, Nigeria’s Tobi Falana has admitted that the speed and techniques of Asians overwhelmed them in the competition.
Falana who was one of the most outstanding Nigerian players in the competition told NationSport that attending the competition has made him to see table tennis from another dimension.
“I feel great making my debut in an international tournament for Nigeria. It was indeed a good experience for me and an eye-opener as well. We are as skillful as other players but the speed and techniques of the Asian players were just too much for us. We cannot match their speed on table. They were too fast for us and their style of play was not too comfortable to us,” he said.
The Kwara State-born athlete, described the experience in South Africa as an added advantage to him. “Playing in this kind of championship was awesome because I gained valuable experience on how to play table tennis better than what we were used to in Nigeria. I think our lack of exposure also affected our performance because most of these players have featured in more tournaments this year before coming to South Africa. For us, this is our first major competition internationally this year. Also our confidence has improved having featured in the competition and we hope we can do better in subsequent competitions,” Falana added.
He, however, lamented the need to work on their service and receiving as this affected them in most of their matches. “My dream as a table tennis player is to create a new record that nobody has ever made. But I also know that we need to work on our back-hand as well as service and receiving. Generally, I gained more confidence and I played well against some top players in the championship,” Falana said.