I won’t quit table tennis now, says Oshonaike
• Praises Aruna Quadri
FIVE-TIME Olympian, Funke Oshonaike is not ready to quit the game of table tennis for now. “I will continue to play as long as my body still carries me. So for me, table tennis has become part of me and I am really in love with the game. It is my body that will tell me to stop,” she said.
Oshonaike was full of praises for Aruna Quadri, saying that the young lad has restored the lost glory of table tennis not only in Nigeria, but Africa as a whole.
The German-based four-time Olympian said she was not really surprised by the successes recorded by Quadri, but said that the world’s 30th ranked player needs support to remain on top of his game.
“I am sure that the world now knows that Nigeria is a force to reckon with in table tennis. The feat of Quadri has vindicated us that with support, table tennis can bring more glory to Nigeria. For me, Quadri is a hardworking player who plays the game with passion and that is what every player needs to succeed. He spent his time and resources to improve and the result has been coming.
I knew that he (Quadri) will become a great player but I never expected it to come so soon because since I have been playing for more than two decades, no African player has made it to the top 30 in the world. This is indeed a history for the whole continent and we should indeed support him because he still has the ability to make it to the top 10 in the world,” he said.
The former Africa table tennis queen believes it is high time that the government paid attention to table tennis. “What football could not achieve table tennis has done and this must give them the opportunity to support the game. We are indeed very happy with this and we hope that other players will be supported alongside Quadri to continue to shine,” Oshonaike said.
“I am pained that our female players are not matching up with their male counterparts in terms of standard and quality. When we started some years back, we were so disciplined and determined but these days, our players are not ready to work hard and maintain discipline. This is one of my priorities for now and that is why I will like to tutor them so that they can imbibe the characteristics that aided some of us to still be playing now,” she said.
She added: “A lot of people are still baffled that I am still active even in my club in Germany. But I want them to know that it was the discipline I imbibed when I started the game that has kept me far. So players must be discipline and train hard to be among the best in life.
If you are doing well in the game, the success will be for you alone so discipline remains the key to success.”