Muscat – Some of the most promising and talented paddlers from across the world are expected to arrive in Muscat next month for the seventh-leg of the highly-competitive World Table Tennis (WTT) Youth Contender Series, which will be held at the Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex (SQSC) from October 10-16.
Oman Table Tennis Association (OTTA) officials are upbeat on the prospects of hosting another world-class table tennis event in Muscat, having hosted successfully similar events in the past.
OTTA chief Abdullah BamaKhalif said, “We are excited to host the WTT Youth Contender Series in Muscat. The event brings together some of the best youngsters from across the globe and we are happy to host such a prestigious series.”
The WTT is the commercial and events company of the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) and aims at placing players and fans at the core of all its business to catapult the game to the forefront of global sports business.
As part of its mission it is hosting the WTT Youth Contender Series and had initially planned 27 events in the series to be played from May-November 2021. The opening event was held in Vila Real, Portugal in May.
However, with the coronavirus pandemic disrupting the schedule, the series has only held six events with the seventh due to be played in Muscat.
Four more events remain after the Muscat leg. Players in the WTT Youth Contender Series will battle it out for ITTF world ranking points, as up-and-coming stars of the sport also look to rise up the ladder.
The OTTA board met recently under the chairmanship of BamaKhalif, the OTTA president, and reviewed the latest preparations for hosting of the event along with the hosting of an ITTF high-performance training camp. Both the events will be held in October at the SQSC.
The WTT Youth Contender leg in Muscat will have the boys’ competition from October 10-12 while girls event will be from October 14-16. The events to be played in Muscat are U11, U13, U15, U17 and U19 singles. The registration deadline for the Muscat event will close on September 23.
Ahead of the tournament, an ITTF high-performance training camp will be organised at the same venue from October 3-8. A total of 14 players including four from Oman (two boys and two girls) will attend the camp.
The OTTA board also gave the nod for a ten-day national junior camp, which began on Friday. The domestic season will begin from October 28 with the national junior championship from October 28-30.
Oman will also send a team at the 2021 Asian Championships, which will take place in Doha, Qatar, from September 28-October 5. A three-member national team for the Asian championships was also announced on Saturday with Asaad al Raisi, Muhannad al Balushi and Haitham al Mandhari named in the squad.
Among the other decisions takes was the confirmation of the sultanate’s participation at the ITTF Congress in USA in November and re-election of Masoud al Shaqsi as the sultanate’s representative at the GCC Table Tennis Committee.
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