Indian paddlers will be tested in quality fieldJune 15th, 2010 - 8:37 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, June 15 (IANS) Indian paddlers will test themselves against a quality field in the $100,000 Indian Open Pro Tour table tennis tournament starting here Wednesday.
The five-day tournament, a test event for the Oct 3-14 Commonwealth Games, will see participation of 102 players from 13 countries at the newly-constructed Yamuna Sports Complex.
Though China is not participating in the event because of overlapping of dates with their domestic super league, teams like Japan, Malaysia, Germany, Chinese Taipei, and South Korea will be in the fray. Pakistan has also pulled out of the event at the last minute citing non-clearance of visas.
India will field 46 players with the country’s top players Achanta Sharath Kamal and Mouma Das, respectively, leading the pack in the men’s and women’s sections.
Reigning Commonwealth Games champion Sharath Kamal, who is currently ranked 91, will look to cash in on the home advantage and win crucial points after having slipped down from the 70th place recently.
Germany’s Dimtrij Ovtcharov, ranked 13, and Singapore’s Gao Ning, ranked 25, are the top draw in the men’s field.
In the women’s section, Singapore’s Yu Mengyu, ranked 12, and Japanese Sayaka Hirano, ranked 15, are the top two world-ranked players.
The top-ranked 16 players will get a direct entry to the main draw. The remaining players will be divided in eight groups where they play the round-robin league. From each group, two top players will qualify to the main draw.
“The Indian players will get a good opportunity to play against the world class players. The men’s team did well in the World Championship and we almost got elevated to the top tier. We are expecting a good show from our players,” said Dhanraj Choudhary, secretary general, Table Tennis Federation of India (TTFI).
Didier Leroy, who is the competition manager from International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF), said the Indian Open Pro Tour has become an important event in the TTFI calendar.
“We wanted it to host in March but we were told that the stadium is not ready. With World Championships rounding up just a few days back, many players are not coming. Still I think there are lot of quality players in the ranks. Also, the prize money of the tournament has been increased and it only will grow from here,” Leroy told IANS.
Leroy also said the facilities in the stadium are world class.
“It is a new venue and the facilities are good. There are still some finishing touches to be done and I am sure before the Commonwealth Games it will be ready.”
He also said ITTF is seriously thinking about marketing the sport in the country.
“Our marketing director will be here during the event and he will be looking at the possibilities to take the sport to a larger audience in India. The Indian team is improving and some of the young players are impressive. TTFI is doing a wonderful job by giving them international exposure. There is enough scope for the sport to grow here and that is the reason why ITTF is having such international tournaments here.”
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- Top stars to miss North Zone Table Tennis - Dec 18, 2010
- TTFI to open national academy to produce world-class players - Dec 11, 2010
- Sharath Kamal lone Indian in ITTF Pro Tour singles - Jun 18, 2010
- Sharath, Subhajit qualify for ITTF Pro Tour Grand Finals - Dec 02, 2010
- Sharath goes down fighting in ITTF Pro Tour Finals - Dec 18, 2010
- World TT body keen to host world championships in India - Oct 15, 2010
- Sharath to spearhead Indian challenge in World TT Championships - May 05, 2011
- Olympic-bound paddlers to play in Sweden, Brazil - Jun 01, 2012
- Olympic-bound paddlers leave for exposure trip - Jun 06, 2012
- My ranking now commands better price: Kamal - Aug 10, 2010
- Table tennis: Sharath misses out on fifth qualifying spot for Olympics - Apr 21, 2012
- Sharath Kamal in Asian table tennis team - Aug 21, 2012
Tags: chinese taipei, commonwealth games, competition manager, didier leroy, gao, hirano, home advantage, important event, international table tennis federation, ittf, paddlers, quality field, ranked players, secretary general, sharath kamal, south korea, table tennis federation, table tennis tournament, test event, ttfi