The smooth journey which was started by African champion Quadri Aruna at the WTT Star Contender Goa was halted on Saturday, January 27 by French teenage sensation Felix Lebrun who defeated the Nigerian 3-1 to advance to the semi-final of the men’s singles in India.
Aruna, the only surviving African in the competition following the first and second-round exit of Egypt’s duo of Hana Goda and Omar Assar in the singles event, had in the second round beat Germany’s Ruwen Filus to set up a round of 16 tie against Alexis Lebrun.
Being their second meeting in a WTT event, Aruna was at his best against the senior Lebrun as the Nigerian came out stronger with a 3-1 (11-8, 8-11, 12-10, 11-8) win to progress to the quarterfinal against the younger Lebrun.
The bespectacled Felix who lost his first meeting against the Nigerian in 2023 must have been briefed by his brother on how to cage Aruna.
And through this, he started the encounter with an intention of avenging his brother’s defeat with 11-4 win in the first game.
Felix continued again in the second game with 11-6 win and Aruna wanted to make another comeback just like he did against Hugo Calderano at the WTT Cup Finals earlier this year for the younger Lebrun, but the French star thwarted this to win the third game at 12-10.
The world number 14 continues his fine run this year after finishing at the quarterfinal stage of the WTT Cup Finals in Doha earlier this year following his superb comeback against Brazilian Hugo Calderano in the first round of the championships and he is expected to lead Nigeria to the 2024 World Team Championships taking place in Busan, South Korea next month.
Source: ATTF Media