*Six athletes involved show gratitude
By Adeyemi Robinson-Adefioye, Lagos
To support junior players to fulfill their dreams, African champion – Aruna Quadri, has supported local-based players with table tennis equipment.
The lucky six players are made up of five male and one female including national junior champion, Azeez Solanke.
According to Quadri, there is need for players to be supported in their quest to fulfill their dream. “I am doing this to ensure that we produce more top players and I know that one of the major challenges is equipment. That is why I had decided to support them and I hope they will continue to work hard in training so that they can also compete at higher level,” said the 2014 ITTF Star Player.
For ex-national junior champion, Nurudeen Hassan, who has been benefiting from Quadri’s benevolence, commended the African star for this gesture, which he described as supportive.
“I am grateful to Quadri because I have been getting this equipment made up of rubbers, clothing, footwear, towels and bags which can be valued at over N100, 000. He started giving me three years ago and others have also been included in the largesse. I think if other top players like him can also take up other junior players and support them, I believe the issue of equipment will not bothered us,” Hassan said.
For Azeez Solanke, who started enjoying Quadri’s support this year admitted that the support has boosted his confidence as well as inspire him to train regularly and harder.
“Before I got the support from Quadri, I was always discouraged to train because of lack of equipment. But when I got the materials, I now derive joy in going for training and what I would have spent money to buy is now given to me free by Quadri.
Apart from the support, Quadri has been an inspiration to most of us with his conduct on and off the table. He is humbled and calm while his skills have taken him across the globe. This is what we dream of when we started the sport. Now with Quadri’s performance and popularity, he has given us hope that we can achieve whatever we desired with hardwork. I just hope others will take a cue from the Portugal-based player,” Solanke said.