Africa’s best table tennis player Quadri Aruna has donated equipment valued at over 1400 Euros (N.75m) to two athletes – Isau Ogunkunble and Faith Obazuaye.
At a presentation held in Lagos on Tuesday, December 15, the Rio Olympic Games quarterfinalist gave support to Paralympians in their quest to make Nigeria proud at Tokyo 2021 Paralympics Games.
Aruna said the gesture was borne out of his resolve to give back to the society especially to the Paralympians that have been making the country proud despite their challenges.
In a short video remark by Aruna said: “On behalf of myself and Aruna Sports Shop, we are always happy to support athletes in Nigeria and this is a way of giving back. Having experienced the same kind of support in my first Olympic Games in London 2012. I think it is very important to support the Paralympians as well who have been doing the country proud for decades. I hope this support will motivate them and help them to do much better in Tokyo, Japan.”
For the second Vice President, Nigeria Table Tennis Federation (NTTF), Alderson Bankole, the kind gesture of Aruna should be emulated by top players. “I am personally impressed with the gesture of Aruna who is fond of thinking about others and I believe other top players should take a cue from this. I believe this will go a long way in motivating the athletes to aim high at Tokyo. I commend him and I look forward to a good performance from the athletes at Tokyo,” Bankole said.
In his remarks, Technical Director, NTTF, Adesoji Tayo, the donation is a thoughtful gesture from Aruna whose generousity toward the less-privileged cannot be underestimated. “I am aware that Aruna has been doing a lot for young players and for him to also remember our Paralympians is inspiring for most of us and I believe he will continue to grow from strength to strength in his endeavours. Others should emulate him and I hope the players will see this gesture as a motivating factor to excel to Tokyo,”Tayo said.
National para table tennis coach Sunday Odebode, Aruna must be commended for thinking about the Paralympians, “I hope and believe this will help the players to focus more in training and excel at Tokyo,”Odebode said.
Ogunkunle and Obazuaye are African champions in class four and 10 respectively while Obazuaye is also a silver medalist at 2018 Commonwealth Games in Australia and they will be making their debut at the Paralympics Games in Tokyo, Japan.
Responding, Ogunkunle and Obazuaye lauded Aruna for supporting them while wishing him well in his career.
The branded Gewo equipment includes three pairs of rubber, blade, bat cover, bag, shirts, shorts, tracksuit, shoe, socks, towel and cap.