Table Tennis: Edem Offiong Tackles Dina Meshref in Lagos Open Semis

Nigeria’s Olufunke Oshonaike and Edem Offiong will vie for a place in the Women’s Singles event showdown of the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) Lagos Open World Tour on Saturday.

Funke outlasted 353rd-ranked Egyptian Galila Nasser by the slimmest of margins 11-8, 6-11, 6-11, 11-7, 13-11, 4-11, 11-9 and will face giant-killing Shao Jieni, who eliminated Russia’s fourth seed Irina Ermakova in straight games at the Molade Okoya-Thomas Indoor Sports Hall on Friday.

Portuguese, Shao, caused the major upset of Day 4 when she took out Irina 11-4, 11-6, 11-9, 11-6.

It was an easy stroll for Funke’s compatriot for Edem, who saw off another Nigerian Janet Effiom 11-5, 11-6, 11-9, 11-9.

Offiong Edem Will Have a Mountain to Climb in Dina Meshref- a Player Rated 122 Places Above Her in the World Ranking. Image: NTTF.
Offiong Edem Will Have a Mountain to Climb in Dina Meshref- a Player Rated 122 Places Above Her in the World Ranking. Image: NTTF.

Edem will face top seed Dina Meshref in the penultimate round on Saturday for a place in the showdown slated for the same day.

Egypt’s Dina, the highest ranked player in the women’s singles in Lagos at 106, accounted for compatriot Yousry Helmy 11-9, 13-11, 11-5, 16-14 to book her place in the final.

It is double triumph over Yousry for Dina after she had beaten her to the Under-21 Women’s Singles title a day earlier.

In the Women’s Doubles event, the Nigerian pair of Cecilia Akpan and Edem battle Egypt’s Dina and Shao in Saturday’s final.

Cecilia and Edem ousted compatriot Olaide Atinuke who partnered Russia’s Irina Ermakova 8-11, 11-6, 9-11, 12-10, 11-9.

Dina and Shao came back from 2-0 down to account for Galila Nasser and Yousry, succeeding by the minimal two point margin in the deciding game 6-11, 3-11, 11-5, 11-5, 11-9.

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