Nigerian male table tennis player, Olajide Omotayo added to the country’s chain of defeats at the early stage of the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan when he lost his opening match on Saturday.
Omotayo, who was the third Nigeria in action on the day, crashed out of the men’s table tennis singles event with a 4-0 loss Tiago Apolonia of Portugal, who carried the day 11-7 11-9 11-6 11-5.
Megasportsarena.com reports that his defeat in the preliminary round meant a total of six Nigerian competitors crashed out of the Tokyo Olympics at the end of Day One.
The dreadlocks-wearing ping-pong player had a game to forget, despite showing some moment of brilliance, as Apolonia handed him a humbling thrashing.
That turned out to be the case for the Nigerian lad, who failed to make use of his youthfulness against the ageing Portuguese, as the 2019 African Games champion struggled throughout the encounter.
Omotayo, who recently revealed how he battled depression to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics, had been hoping to make a huge impact at his debut in the Games, but that dream came unstuck at the first step out.
All the Italy-based star can do now is take consolation from his historic Olympics’ outing, even as he remains the first Nigerian and African to win a match at the World Table Tennis (WTT) events in Doha, Qatar.
He is currently ranked the 92nd player in the world by international table tennis federation (ITTF) and posited that he remains excited being part of Team Nigeria to Tokyo.
Omotayo added: “I feel happy and at the same very proud of myself for qualifying for my first Olympic Games because I have always wanted to achieve this dream. It is only God that has made it possible.”