Asaad takes on Muhannad in national TT title-clash

Muscat, Sept 15 – Defending singles champion Asaad al Raisi will take on Muhannad al Balushi in the summit clash of the Sultanate’s National Table Tennis Championship (Singles, General category) as both of them secured slots for the final match. The three days tournament was organised by Oman Table Tennis Committee (OTTC) at the Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex indoor courts and concluded on Saturday. The singles final match will be held along with of the National Table Tennis Championship (Teams) which will take place at the same venue from September 26 to 29.
In the junior singles, Essa al Riyami emerged champion after beating Muath al Shehi 3-2 in the final. In the cadet category singles final, Al Mudher al Ghassani outplayed Ahmed al Riyami 3-2 in a thriller.

As many as 32 players took part in the national TT for singles (general category) played in eight groups. In junior and cadet section, 16 players participated in the tournament. The technical system of the tournament was based on the league system where the top two teams will advance to the knockout stages. In the general category singles, Asaad al Raisi secured a slot in the final after registering a 3-2 win against Said al Qarni, while Muhannad al Balushi beat Al Khalil al Barashdi 3-1.

In the cadet category, Mohammed al Mouta edged Omar al Ghassani 3-1 in the third-fourth place play-off. In the junior category, Essa al Riyami, Mashal al Shehi, Omar al Ghassani and Al Mundher al Ghassani booked their slots in the semifinal. Essa al Riyami finished on top and Muadh al Shehi claimed the second place. Oman head coach Mohammed Atoum stated that this edition of the Sultanate Table Tennis Championship for general, junior and cadet categories (singles) recorded more participants in comparison with the previous edition especially at the junior and cadet categories.

“The technical performance level of the domestic players has improved. It was difficult to predict the top players from any group as the competitions were too tough. The development of the technical level of the national junior players is due to a series of internal and external camps which was held in the last period. Also, the Sultanate’s participation at the West Asian Championship in Jordan was one of the factor of the raising the level of the junior players,” Atoum added.