CTTA to stage event series amid Olympic preparation

2021-04-08 14:05:58 GMT2021-04-08 22:05:58(Beijing Time) Xinhua English

BEIJING, April 8 (Xinhua) -- The Chinese paddlers will take part in an event series within the team in contention for the World Table Tennis (WTT) Grand Smashes and the World Championships spots to help them better prepare for the Tokyo Olympic Games, the Chinese Table Tennis Association (CTTA) announced on Thursday.

This event series is planned to take place between late April and early May. The decision was made after the WTT announced that its "China Hub" was scheduled for after the Olympic Games.

"We believe that, given the current circumstances, it is the fairest and safest decision for our players as they prepare for the Olympic Games and navigate global uncertainty around travel and training restrictions. The well-being of all those involved in our sport remains our number one priority," read the WTT's statement.

The Chinese team is preparing for the Tokyo Olympic Games in its training base located in Chengdu, southwest China's Sichuan province.

"We have just finished the first segment of our isolated training, and overall our players are in a fine condition," said Qin Zhijian, secretary-general of the CTTA.

"We keep our own preparation rhythm at the current stage and conduct the training in accordance with the plan," Qin, also head coach of the Chinese men's team, noted.

According to Li Sun, Qin's counterpart in the women's team, a main target is to improve some key players' capabilities in a competitive scenario.

The Chinese team has conducted its training under the guiding principles of "safety, health, training and participation" since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.

"We have laid out several plans since the pandemic began and taken our steps in Olympic preparation, so that we can handle all emergencies including the postponement of the Olympic Games and different situations concerning other competitions," Qin commented.

"The Chinese team has to take the best option in every step in response to these changes," he added.

Qin hopes that the Chinese paddlers can make the most of this event series to keep momentum and showcase their overall strength, adding that the CTTA is in positive discussion with related media with an aim at putting on an extravaganza for all table tennis fans.