El Jaish make table tennis history
El jaish team defeat Qatar Sports Club 3-0 to lift their first Emir Cup, win 4th trophy of the season.
THe el Jaish table tennis team made history on Sun-day as they blanked Qatar Sports Club 3-0 to win the emir Cup for the first time in the history of the club and thereby lifting an unprec-edented fourth trophy of the season. The win capped a memo-rable season for the Army team who had emerged the league winners as well as singles and doubles cham-pions of the Qatar Cup prior to the finals of the emir Cup, the last and most prestigious tournament of the season. el Jaish had defeated Al Sadd 3-1 en route the final while Qatar Sports overcame the stubborn resistance of Al Arabi, last year’s finalist, to set up the mouth-watering played at the indoor Hall of the Al Arabi Stadium in Doha. The el Jaish team which was led by its captain Ahmad Khalil al Mohannadi, also includes the Rio Olympics qualifier Li Ping and Ya nan while Qatar Sports were rep-resented by Hao Chen, Mo-hammed al Saddi and Mo-hammed Abdulwahab. in the first match of the day, Ya nan sets the ball rolling for the Army team after account-ing for a 3-1 (11-5, 11-6, 11-13, 14-12) defeat of Hao Chen. The sturdy player was in total control of the game from the start with his tricky serves and back hand returns which proved too much for Chen to handle. The Jaish player raised to a 2-0 lead within 16 minutes of pro-ceedings. The third set was however a different ball game as Chen opened a 6-0 margin before nan attempted a comeback which proved a little too late as he ended losing 11-13. He however came back bouncing in the fourth set, stamping his feet against a seemingly comeback from his Chinese compatriot to ensure a 14-12 win and a 1-0 lead for his team. next up was Li Ping and Saadi in what was evidently a mismatch. The Rio-bound player wasted no time in dispatching his opponent 3-0 (11-5, 11-4, 11-3) to take Jaish’s lead to 2-0. Mohannadi, as if taking a cue from his teammate Li Ping, repeated the same mar-gin against Abdulwahad (11-7, 11-6, 12-10) to emerge the 2015-16 champions. With the win, el Jaish smiled home with a QR150,000 prize money as well as the golden trophy, while Qatar Sports were QR100,000 richer for their efforts. Speaking to Qatar Trib-une after the match, Mohan-nadi said, “We are very happy to win this tournament for the first time in the history of our club. The match was tough as Qatar Sports gave their best but in the end, the trophy was ours.” “We have made history by being champions in all the tournaments of the season and i hope we can maintain the momentum. i am equally happy that i won the decid-ing game and thereby ensur-ing the trophy is ours,” the Army team captain said. On his parts, Qatar Table Tennis Association (QTTA) President Khalil Ahmed al Mohannadi said, “The tour-nament was well contested and the players gave it their best. The emir Cup is a pres-tigious tournament and i am happy that it has continued to maintain its reputation. Congratulations to the win-ners – el Jaish and better luck to the losers next time.”Asked about the qualifi-cation of Li Ping for the Rio games and the preparation towards the competition, the QTTA president said, “it is a honour for the association and Qatar to have the only player from the gCC at the table tennis event of the most important sporting events on earth. We are planning to have training camps in ger-many and China and if Li Ping is lucky in the draws, we believe he will go far.”