Friday, August 12, 2022

Elite table tennis players face off this weekend

The Botswana Table Tennis Association (BTTA), in collaboration with the Chinese General Chamber of Commerce in Botswana, will this weekend host a two-day invitational tournament at the Botswana College of Agriculture multipurpose hall.

The event, which will be in its second year, pits elite local table tennis players against 13 selected players from Botswana’s Chinese community. Speaking in an interview with Telegraph Sport, BTTA tournament director, Kudzanani Motswagole, said only top ranked local players are eligible to play in the tournament.

“We have invited the top 24 ranked men and top 27 ranked women to play this tournament. They will be joined by 13 players from the local Chinese community, eight men and five women, bringing the total number of competitors to 32 in both men and women’s category,” Motswagole said.

In the men’s section, some of the players expected to grace the tournament include the tournament’s defending champion, Bonolo Mabote as well as other top players like Dafrien Goppani, McDonald Qalinge as well as the hard-hitting Joseph Kgatlampane.

Women’s defending champion Matshidiso Osi will be seeking to successfully defend her title against the likes of Boitshwarelo Butale, Tshepiso Rebatenne and Follah Leero.

The BTTA tournament says the tournament will be played in four categories ÔÇô the singles, doubles, mixed doubles and team events. Motswagole says all invited players will be eligible to play in all categories, save for the team events where only the top eight ranked players will be allowed to compete.

The tournament directors said players taking part in the competition will be divided into eight groups of four per section, with only the top two players per group making the last 16. He said players making it past the group stages will then have to face off in knockout games to decide who makes it to the finals, to be held on Sunday.

Winners of singles, doubles and mixed doubles will walk off with P500 cash while the runners up and second runners up would get P300 and P200 respectively.

. Winners of the team events and their runners up will get P1 200 and P800 respectively. The tournament is sponsored by the Chinese General Chamber of Commerce.


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