The 2021 Nigeria Table Tennis Federation (NTTF) National Championships will serve off at the Molade Okoya-Thomas Hall of the Teslim Balogun Stadium on Tuesday.

The five-day tournament will serve as a test for home-based players with N4.5 million up for grabs in 12 events. It is also open for professionals and veterans above 50 years.

Players will compete for honours in the men’s and women’s categories of the team, singles, doubles, mixed doubles, U21, cadet and veterans singles above 50.

According to the breakdown of the prize money (N4.5 million), winners in men and women’s singles events will earn N250,000 each, while U-21 and cadet champions take home N100,000 and N50,000 respectively.

Also, winners in team and doubles events will get N200,000 and N100,000 respectively, with quarter-finalists in each event earning a minimum of N50,000 each.

At the press briefing to herald the commencement of the tournament, the Tournament Director, Tayo Adesoji, said the aim of the tournament was to continue the momentum which started from the 20th National Sports Festival to the concluded 14th Aso Cup held in Abuja.

The five-day championships will end on Saturday, May 22.

“We are aware of the quality of play in Edo and Abuja and for us, we want to continue to raise the bar by staging the national tournament so that our players can showcase their talents for the national handlers to identify them.

“I promise you it is going to be explosive as players will compete in 12 events in cadet, U-21, senior, and veterans. The icing on the cake is the total purse for the champion which for us will motivate the players to want to go for the top prize. Also, we are going to ensure that COVID-19 protocol is adhered to throughout the tournament,” he said.

Mr Adesoji, who is the former Technical Director of NTTF, charged the players to conduct themselves in the best possible manner as the federation is poised to unearth more Aruna Quadris in near future.

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