On the occasion of the 2022 ITTF World Team Table Tennis Championships Finals Chengdu, the International Table Tennis Federation has extended a credential to Brian Carrer, FISU Games Summer Event Manager.
Chengdu was awarded the rights to host the Chengdu 2021 FISU World University Games in 2019, before the event was postponed twice due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic to July-August 2023.
Sport events in China have been upended because of the pandemic, with only the Beijing 2022 Winter Games and the 2022 ITTF World Team Table Tennis Championships Finals welcoming in athletes from abroad into the country. In both instances, organizers were successfully able to control athlete entry to create a “closed-loop” management system to separate athletes from the general population, thus limiting the potential spread of COVID-19 for a safe environment.
Promoting cross-collaboration with the sporting world was a high-priority for the ITTF when staging its World Championships, and the lessons the LOC has learned will leave a legacy of continuing to stage high events in Chengdu and China for years to come.
“We are very grateful towards the ITTF for allowing us to observe and learn from the staging of the 2022 ITTF World Team Table Tennis Championships Finals,” Carrer said. “Putting on a safe Chengdu 2021 FISU Games is the priority for our federation at this moment and seeing how the ITTF was able to navigate in our host city will prove invaluable. Seeing how the Chengdu LOC was able to respond to the challenges to this event gives us nothing but hope that next year’s FISU World University Games will go off without a hitch in China.”
During the ITTF 2022 World Team Table Tennis Championships Finals, all participants are tested for COVID-19 daily and stay in specially selected hotels with dedicated shuttles to and from venues to avoid the general population in Chengdu. The games are being broadcast for the first time in 4K in the Chinese market. Broadcasts of the World Championships will be available in 120 countries; and the event will be watched by hundreds of million viewers
The ITTF drew from the success of the Beijing 2022 Olympics to ensure the safe delivery of its World Team Championships. Now the federation hopes to pass that success on to the International University Sport Federation (FISU) and the entire sporting world.
Eighteen sports will contest around Chengdu, China next year as part of the event, including table tennis. It will be the largest international multi-sport event in China after the 2022 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games.
“Collaboration is at the heart of these World Team Championships,” Petra Sörling, ITTF President said about bringing FISU into the closed loop. “We would not have been able to stage these games if it were not for the ambition of the local organizing committee. We hope their knowledge can be used to ensure that international sport can continue to thrive in China, even as we continue to battle COVID-19.”