The table tennis family in Africa led by its ruling body, the African Table Tennis Federation (ATTF) presided over by Khaled El-Salhy are at present in mourning mood following the demise of former President of South Africa Table Tennis Board (SATTB) Mr. Ganief Fataar, who championed some milestones in the history of table tennis in South Africa.
The news of the passing on of Mr Fataar who died on November 9 after a long battle with cancer, was conveyed in a statement issued by SATTB who described the late sports administrator as a distinguished individual whose unwavering commitment to SATTB has left an enduring imprint.
According to SATTB, “Fataar’s legacy stands as a poignant testament to the transformative influence one person could wield on an entire sporting landscape.”
For the ATTF President, the death of Fataar was received with shock. “I have received with great sorrow the sad news of the death of Mr. Ganief Fataar who passed away yesterday after a long battle with cancer.
“On behalf of ATTF Executive Council and the table tennis family in Africa, I am extending my sincere condolences to SATTB and the family of the late Ganief Fataar, who was part of our continental table tennis history by was occupying the following posts as ATTF Zonal Vice President (Zone 6) (2000 – 2010), ATTF EVP – Marketing during (2010 – 2012) and ITTF BoD Member during 2008 – 2012
He added: “He was always serving our beloved sport with a great passion, integrity and transparency.”
The late Fataar founded Anchors Table Tennis Club, as well as occupied the position of Chair of the Transvaal Table Tennis Association and the Central Gauteng Table Tennis Association, before becoming President of SATTB.
Later in October 2007, he was prominent in the organisation of the ITTF World Junior Circuit Finals and ITTF World Cadet Challenge in Cape Town. These events paved the way for Cape Town to host the 2016 World Junior Championships, followed earlier this year by a WTT Contender tournament and the World Championships Finals.
Through his academy in Pretoria, some of the top players in South Africa like Shane Overmeyer, Luke Abrahams, Terence Mathole, Zodwa Maphanga and Khanyisile Madlada emerged.