TT innovates and activates with style

Author:
Russell Moore

Publish date:

Please note - this news article was published more than five years ago. Some of the information contained may no longer be correct.

An innovative variation of table tennis returns on Tuesday 30th November and Wednesday 1st December 2010. 
The Spectacular Pairs competition will be part of the programme for the Volkswagen Cup in the German city of Braunschweig. First tried at the Volkswagen Cup in China earlier this year, it proved to be a great success.

Interspersed between the main event, the format is simple; two players have three minutes to provide the most spectacular rally possible, judged – in true Strictly Come Dancing style – by a panel of experts who each provide a score out of ten.

The Goal

“Our goal is to present to the audience a fun and spectacular event that incorporates many of the attractive features of our sport”, said Adham Sharara, ITTF President. “This is especially suited for the flamboyant and spectacular styles of play; if this event continues to succeed and gain in popularity, we may initiate a circuit of events in the future.”

In Braunschweig, the spectacular pairs will be contested by five extravagant pairings including two Swedish legends, Jan-Ove Waldner and Mikael Applegren plus, the winners last time around, brothers, Jean Michel and Philippe Saive.

Increasing Numbers of Spectators and Growing Sponsorship Appeal

It is clear that the International Table Tennis Federation is making great strides at increasing the spectator and subsequently sponsorship appeal of this truly worldwide sport. 

This was underlined by the significant increase in online viewing at the World Championships this year resulting in 1.1 million connections to the live streaming, from no fewer that 124 different countries.

Successful Partnership with Volkswagen

“Table Tennis is a sport that is played and viewed worldwide but of course we know its special appeal in Asia and especially in China”, continued Adham Sharara. “For this reason Volkswagen has made a wise choice to partner with the ITTF and promote its brand in these areas.”

It is a move that has proved fruitful.

“So far this long lasting partnership has been very successful for both sides”, he continued. “Suffice it to say that Volkswagen was no.2 in China prior to its involvement with table tennis, but has maintained the No.1 position in terms of volume of sales of cars since its partnership with us.”

Significant Competition

Adham Sharara was also keen to point out the significance of the Volkswagen Cup. 
“The Volkswagen Cup is an event that presents the cream of the crop, but the most interesting feature is that fact that we have only one player per country”, he added.

“This makes for a very exciting and dramatic event as each player is fighting individually without the usual support of other players from the same country in the tournament. Of course we have the best players in the World, and each wants to win, so it’s very exciting.”

Impressive Prize Fund

The Volkswagen Cup boasts an impressive $250,000 prize fund with the winners also driving away with a brand new car courtesy of the sponsors, Volkswagen.

Men World Ranking
BOLL Timo – GER
MA Lin – CHN
SAMSONOV Vladimir – BLR
JOO Se Hyuk – KOR
MIZUTANI Jun – JPN
CHUANG Chih-Yuan – TPE
GAO Ning – SIN
TANG Peng – HKG
2
4
7
9
10
16
17
18
WOMEN World Ranking
FENG Tianwei – SIN
KIM Kyung Ah – KOR
LI Xiaoxia – CHN
FUKUHARA Ai – JPN
JIANG Huajun – HKG
WU Jiaduo – GER
SHEN Yanfei – ESP
TOTH Krisztina – HUN
2
4
6
9
11
12
15
19
Spectacular Pairs
SAIVE Philippe – BEL SAIVE Jean Michel – BEL
TOTH Krisztina – HUN STRBIKOVA Renata – CZE
WALDNER Jan-Ove – SWE APPELGREN Mikael – SWE
GUO Yuehua – CHN CHENG Xinhua – CHN
FETZNER Steffen – GER WOSIK Torben – GER

Visit http://www.ittf.com/competitions/competitions2.asp?Competition_ID=1995&category=WTC to find out more.

Richard Pettit
ITTF Media Manager

Follow the ITTF and it’s updates:
facebook.com/ITTFWorld
twitter.com/ITTFWorld
flickr.com/ITTFWorld

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