Table Tennis

A Table Tennis start in Nigeria, Kazeem Makanjuola playing
Kazeem Makanjuola playing. Photo: Lens NG

Table Tennis is a racquet sport played by hitting a lightweight ball back and forth across a hard table divided by net, using a small round racket. Although the Table Tennis started in Victorian England as an indoor sport, the game as it is today known was started in 1926 with the formation in Europe, of the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF). The table tennis became an Olympics sport in 1988, and twelve years later, the ITTF made adjustments to the rules of the game to make it more viable as a televised sport.

The pin pong game in Nigeria probably first came into public attention with the duel in 1949 under a apple tree at Idita in Olowogbowo area of Lagos. Olowogbowo, represented by Joe Meredith beat Isale Eko area in the eyes of some five hundred spectators. Nigeria’s leadership in Afrian Championships orchestrated by players such as Atanda Musa, Mabel Segun and Ademola Alli, began at the 3rd All Africa Table Tennis Championships of 1968. This continued for another twenty-one years, as a place was secured for Nigeria in the world’s elite sixteen in 1989. Nigeria won its first ever gold at ITTF 2015 when Nigerian duo, Aruna Quadri and Kazeem Makanjuola defeated their compatriots, Onaolapo Ojo and Jide Ogidiolu at the Africa Senior Table Tennis Championships in Cairo, Egypt.

Tope Apoola
Profession: Writer