As the ITTF World Table Tennis Championships Finals drew to a close on 28 May, a symbolic ceremony took place, with the ITTF flag and Egypt Cup being presented to the city of Busan, the host of the next edition. With the allegorical baton officially passed from Durban to Busan, it also signifies the transition from one tournament to the next.
This occasion marks a milestone for the Republic of Korea, as it will be the first time in history that the World Championships will be held in the country. Furthermore, the 2024 championships in Busan will coincide with the momentous 100-year anniversary of the Korea Table Tennis Association (KTTA).
The significance of the Egypt Cup extends beyond its ceremonial role. As it changes hands, the cup shines a light on the profound impact that table tennis has had in promoting friendship and goodwill throughout history. The sport has transcended borders, bridging cultural divides and bringing people from different nations together in the spirit of competition and camaraderie. The Egypt Cup stands as a testament to these values and serves as a reminder of the positive influence that table tennis continues to have on the world stage.
Ryu Seung Min, the President of the KTTA, expressed his excitement about hosting the prestigious event next year and the historic significance it holds, saying, “We are thrilled to welcome the table tennis world to the Republic of Korea for the first time in history. It is an honour and a privilege to host the ITTF World Teams Championships Finals in Busan. As it is also our 100-year anniversary of the KTTA, this tournament holds a special place in the hearts of Koreans, and we are determined to make it a truly unforgettable experience for everyone involved.”
Joo Sae-Hyuk, coach of the Korea Men’s national team, highlighted the significance of the tournament to be hosted in Busan, saying, “It is really a privilege to host the World Championships in Busan next year, and I am sure that many table tennis fans will be so excited about the event. It will be a very historical moment for us and I cannot wait to showcase our beautiful city to the world.”
Oh Kwanghun, coach of the Korea Women’s national team, added, “It is a pity that we could not have the tournament in 2020 because of Covid, but I am really looking forward to it being held in Busan next year. For fans who come to visit us next year, I hope that they will get to enjoy all the good food and beautiful scenery that our city has to offer.”
Men’s Doubles pair, semi-finalists of the 2023 World Championships, Lee Sangsu and Cho Daeseong, also expressed their enthusiasm for the next championships to be hosted in their country.
Said Lee, “It is going to be such a big event and there is a huge difference between watching the matches live as compared to watching them on TV, so I would really want to give fans a treat by letting them watch many fun and exciting matches.”
Cho added, “I am very happy that the World Championships will be hosted in Busan 2024 and I hope that all the fans who come to watch the event will get to enjoy the beauty of the sport.”
The ITTF World Team Table Tennis Championships Finals Busan 2024 will take place from 16 to 25 February. As we approach the marquee event, the organising committee is increasing public engagement. In March this year, they introduced their delightful mascots, Loopy and Chopy, which have already captured the hearts of many. More information about ticketing will be available soon, giving fans a chance to secure their spots for this highly anticipated event.