Top table tennis players head to Africa Top 16 Cup in Kenya

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Kenyan players Brian Mutua and Sejal Thakkar have their work cut out for them as they launch their title hunts against Saheed Idowu from Congo and Katia Kessaci from Algeria respectively.

Kenya's Table Tennis Association (KTTA) President Andrew Mudibo said all preparations have been complete and hope the best players will emerge victorious.

NAIROBI, March 1 (Xinhua) -- Nairobi will host the best 32 table tennis stars from 14 African nations on Thursday for the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) Africa Top 16 Cup.

Among the countries that have sent in their players include Kenya, Nigeria, Egypt and South Africa.

Among the array of stars in Nairobi are world number 16 and 22 - Egypt's Omar Assar and Nigeria's Aruna Quadri. Joining them will be seven-time Olympian Segun Toriola of Nigeria.

"We have the top players from Africa and this event will help in the preparations for the Commonwealth Games," said Mudibo on Thursday in Nairobi.

Sejal will be the first Kenyan on the floor against Oshonaike Olufunke of Nigeria, Kessaci Katia of Algeria and Christy Brustol of Seychelles.

The 42-year-old mother of two will be using the tournament as part of her preparations for next month's Commonwealth Games.

Already the 16 men and 16 women have been drawn into four groups of four with the top two players advancing to the knockout stage.