Nigerian favourite to win table tennis gold
Nigeria's table tennis coach Bello Nosiru is tipping Quadri Aruna to cope with the pressure of being favourite for gold at the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games.
Aruna is the highest ranking player competing at GC2018 and his coach is confident the 29-year-old will thrive under the bright lights.
"There will be added pressure on Aruna, but I strongly believe he will be close to the best player come the end of GC2018," said Nosiru.
"He is energised, focused and talented, but understands the pressure involved with being No.1."
Aruna, who helped Nigeria take bronze in the team event at Glasgow 2014, became the first African player to reach an Olympic quarterfinals at the Rio 2016 Olympics.
Joining him in the men’s team are fellow bronze medallists from Glasgow 2014, Bode Abiodun and Segun Toriola, plus Azeez Jamiu and Olajide Omotayo.
The Nigerians will be one of the teams to watch, but Nosiru knows the competition will be fierce.
"I believe we should expect the unexpected because all the countries have improved on their skills, performance, serving, rallies and practice routines,” he said.
"Anyone from Nigeria, India, England and Singapore is capable of beating anyone.
"There will be players with no expectations who have the capability to surprise at GC2018 and they may appear on the podium."
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This article was produced by Games News Service.