Lagos Team Nigeria’s Assistant Captain to the Rio 2016 Olympic Games and one of Quadri Aruna’s table tennis teammates, Funke Oshonaike, says she is proud of his achievements.
Oshonaike said on Tuesday that Aruna had proved that nothing is unachievable when one’s mind is set to it.
She was reacting to Aruna being the first African to reach the quarter-finals of the men’s table tennis singles event at Olympics.
Aruna on Monday made another history in global table tennis defeating world No. 14, Germany’s Timo Boll 4-2 in the fourth round of the competition.
“I have always known that Aruna is a blessed and special one of a kind and a very good boy but now a man.
“I am so happy and proud to have known a source of inspiration to all and sundry, I celebrate you Aruna and I love you and I am proud of you,’’ she said.
Another player, Ojo Onaolapo, commended Aruna and urged him not to relent not on his oars until he wins the gold in the competition.
Onaolapo said that he had started well and advised him to also end well.
“I must say that I am proud of Aruna right now and what he is doing. He hasn’t only made himself proud but Nigeria and Africa as a whole.
“I know it’s not an easy task he’s facing in Rio but I believe in him that he has what it takes to conquer and emerge victorious.
“I want him to continue with the fighting spirit and play cautiously.
“He is playing among the best players globally which is a good one in building up his tactics and confidence level.
“His rallies have been superb and I want him to continue to get better with each match.
“Above all, he needs to heed the corrections given to him by his coaches and teammates. They are watching him and I know they are watching out with keen interest,’’ Onaolapo said.
A cadet player, Abayomi Animashaun, praised Aruna noting that he is one of his mentors in the sport.
Animashaun added that he is threading in Aruna’s footsteps.
“He is one player that I respect so much, he has been able to prove that he knows what he’s doing and maintained consistent good appearances.
“I am happy with what he’s doing in Rio and I pray to God to help him to finish on a good note so that we all will celebrate.
“I also want him to know that we are all behind him and that we praying for him.
“He has what it takes to come out tops but I enjoin him to please be careful and not put himself under unnecessary pressure,’’ he said.
Aruna, Africa’s pride at the ongoing Games in Brazil, has maintained a remarkable performance, maintaining a winning streak and putting Africa on the spotlight.
He made another history in global table tennis defeating world No. 14, Germany’s Timo Boll 4-2 in the fourth round of the men’s singles in Rio.
Prior to Monday’s game, Nigeria’s Aruna was at par with Segun Toriola who made it to the fourth round at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games in China.
Aruna became the first African and black man to play in the quarterfinal stage of the table tennis event at Olympic Games.
It will be recalled that he set a record in 2014 when he became the first African and black man to play in the quarter-finals of the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) World Cup.
Also in 2015, he became the first non-Asian and African to win the ITTF Star Player Award
Aruna’s next match is on Wednesday against China’s world ranked number one Ma Long.