National table tennis coach Yves Ndizeye has said he’s impressed with how his team performed during the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) Africa Youth Championship which concluded on April 13th in Accra, Ghana.
Ndizeye said the team gave their best even though they did not win any medal. Rwanda was represented by Patrick Masengesho (junior) and national women champion Hervine Tumukunde.
Upon returning to Kigali on Monday, the coach said the tournament was very competitive, but “my team played beyond my expectation, it shows they have improved and that will be our main focus going forward”.
“The objective was to give them an opportunity to gain international exposure. We believe the championship was good for them,” Ndizeye said.
In her opening game, Rwanda’s Tumukunde failed to advance to the round of 16 in the U-18 competition after losing 1-3 to Tunisian Beji Ghofrane.
On his part, Mashengesho started on a good note in the opening round defeating Eke Victor of Togo 4-3 to qualify to the next round of 16 but, at that level, he lost to Regis Kassi of Congo Brazzaville with a set score of 1-4.
The ITTF Africa Junior championship was a showcase for the continent’s next generation of stars with nearly 100 players from 21 countries putting their tennis skill on show.
Nigeria and Egypt confirmed their status as the powerhouses of the sport in Africa as both countries shared the medals on offer.