The President of the African Table Tennis Federation (ATTF), Khaled El-Salhy believes the seeding was the undoing of African players at the ongoing ITTF World Championships in Suzhou, China.

Khaled who was not happy with the performance of the teams from the continent especially Nigeria and Egypt, saying, “I think they were carried away by the seeding.”

“I am not too happy because our players thought that because they have been seeded they will unbeatable and that was a big mistake for them. For me I think rather than helping them to do well, the seeding has made them to be complacent and most of them were defeated by players who are ranked lower than them,” he said.

The ATTF helmsman added: “I think I had expected them to progress in the singles event but most of them that made it from the group matches as well as those that were already seeded were too complacent and this really caused them the matches. This has gone to show that our players must buckle if they hope to compete at big stage like this. It is unfortunate that it is only Omar Assar of Egypt that was able to progress to the second round in the men’s singles.”

He however, singled out Nigeria’s Segun Toriola whom he said still plays well despite her age. “I don’t think most of the young players play well like Toriola because I did not expect what he played especially in the first round match when he had to come from 3-0 down to level up at 3-3 before eventually losing 4-3. If he had won that match, he would have faced Omar Assar in the second round. I hope they have all leant their lessons from this tournament.”