Singapore, July 2 (IANS) The International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) announced here on Monday that it has signed an agreement with Sportsmaster, a sports marketing agency, to set up a new professional tournament platform in 2021 with an integrated commercial programme that will take the sport to the next level.
This new platform, as part of the plans announced by the ITTF to professionalize table tennis by 2021, will have the ITTF World Tour, Table Tennis X, World Veterans Tour and T2 Asia-Pacific Table Tennis League (T2APAC) unified under it, according to a press release, reports Xinhua news agency.
“This will be quite unique for a sport having its World Championships and a separate yet truly professional platform under one roof, which is all connected to the world ranking and Olympic qualification, which we believe will make us pioneers in the sporting world,” said ITTF CEO Steve Dainton in the press release.
The release said Sportsmaster will assist the ITTF to fully professionalize its World Tour. As part of the deal in 2019 and 2020, the ITTF will grant T2APAC the rights to arrange Diamond events.
In doing so, the T2APAC will act as an innovation engine testing the feasibility of new initiatives that will help ensure that the Seamaster ITTF World Tour will be restructured and taken to the next level and transform the future of the sport post-2020.
If this proves to be successful, the ITTF will consider with all its stakeholders, a milestone shift in the way its events deal with players and event organisers, the ITTF press release said.