by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
Proceedings started with an address from former World champion, Jörgen Persson, the Liebherr 2018 World Team Championships ambassador.
He spoke about his career, his expectations for the forthcoming event; also present was Puerto Rico’s Adriana Diaz, between the conclusion of the Seamaster 2017 ITTF World Tour Swedish Open and the forthcoming 2017 World Junior Championships in Riva del Garda, she was present in Halmstad alongside the Japanese team.
A group phase followed by knock-out was the order of proceedings, the local newspaper, Hallandsposten, represented by Jonas Gustavsson and Thomas Ylander emerged as the tournament champions.
Notably the event was organised in conjunction with IS Halmia Football Club, an organisation with a long standing tradition and well-known to the local business community.
“We figured that World Championships here in Halmstad certainly will be a totally unique event and we asked ourselves what we could do to help out to make this the extraordinary event it deserves to be. At the same time, we also thought about how we could benefit. Together we came up with this idea to have a table tennis tournament on mini tables. I must say that the co-operation turned out extremely well since this became an evening appreciated by the members in our business network. We are already planning the next joint venture event.” Anders Stålberg, Marketing Manager in IS Halmia.
The event was staged at the Tylösand Hotel, the hotel which was used for the Liebherr 2015 Men’s World Cup and for the Rio 2016 European Qualification tournament.
It will host the 2018 ITTF Annual General Meeting, notably it is owned by Per Gessle, a member of the Swedish pop group, Roxette.
The evening proved most successful and no doubt established a relationship that may be extended well beyond the bounds of the Liebherr 2018 World Team Championships.
“For us this was a great opportunity to inform local business about not just the World Championships but also the work that we are doing in our concept Ping Pong Power together with our partner Butterfly. It’s important to show that we want to establish some sort of legacy that will remain even after the Championships. Personally, I also highly appreciate the IS Halmia way of approaching us. They had a clear idea that we both could benefit from; we really want everyone to be engaged in the Worlds here in Halmstad since it´s such a small city but we´re also very busy with preparations so we don´t have an ocean of time. It was great that they had such a clear vision of what we could accomplish together.” Johnny Ewerstein, Project Manager – Liebherr 2018 World Championships.
They say don’t mix business with pleasure, proved wrong in Halmstad