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Tennis News of Friday, 7 October 2011

Source: Sammy Heywood Okine

Table Tennis star Cecilia Baah-Danso looks beyond All Africa Games

Ghana's best Table Tennis player at the recent 10th All African Games in Maputo, Mozambique has praised her coach Owusu Ansah for grooming her into an international star and boosting her confidence at the Games.

Speaking to your truly after the Games, the Ghana number two in the ladies division said her game has improved tremendously and gives praise to her technical directors and people who have motivated and inspired her to reach her current status.

The former seventh best player last year who improved to become the number two or second best in Ghana Table Tennis noted that it is not easy combining education and sports so she has shelved education for a while to represent Ghana at the tenth All African Games where she rose to become the 14th best on the continent.

"Though I was not in the medal zone I was very happy and even Edem Offiong, the eventual winner of the female event from Nigeria, came to congratulate me for my efforts," she said.

According to Cylia, it was not easy at Maputo as they were not too comfortable with the situation Ghana encountered but because of the love that they had for sports, they forgot all the sorrows and wanted to make names for themselves and the nation.

She said as the tournament in Maputo went on she was the only Ghanaian who progressed to the last 16 and the Table Tennis contingent had to wait for her to play before coming home when the whole competition has not ended.

"In fact, it was an experience and it’s good for us because we have learnt many things in traveling and international competition. I have stepped up my training and I want to be the best by the end of the year. It’s not easy but I will be my best and stay on top for a long time, God willing," she said confidently.

Cylia Baah- Danso who wants to become like her mentor, the American star Kim Gilbert stressed that the Ghanaian Tennis team is very good and appealed to the sports authorities to send them out to training tours in advanced Table Tennis playing countries like China so that they sharpen their skills and talents.

She told *Sports in Ghana*: "I hope and pray to be recognised as one of the best sports girls in Ghana. My wish for now is to grab the Sports Writers Association of Ghana (SWAG) award in my sports Table Tennis, and I know I will make it by the grace of God".