by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Manager
Overall, born in the year 2000 or later, in the junior age group a total of 117 boys and 92 girls have enrolled; for those in the cadet category, born in 2003 or later there are 94 boys and 84 girls, whilst in the min-cadet age category the numbers read 45 boys and 35 girls.
Notably for the ITTF World Junior Circuit tournament, for the first time China is represented; a competition which witnesses representatives from no less than 40 national associations.
Meanwhile, for the Nittaku Cup, the elite Men’s Singles event, a total of 160 players have entered; a prize of €3,000 awaiting the winner.
As always a busy time lies ahead, more than 450 players will compete in over 2,300 matches; some 100 umpires will be on duty with approaching 200 volunteers enabling the tournament to run in a smooth fashion.
Elite level play at one end of the spectrum; at the other, players dipping their feat in international waters for the first time; somewhere in between the ITTF World Junior Circuit tournament. Add all the elements together and very special event of the sporting calendar is realised, the Safir International.