Major Table Tennis Tournaments

Professional TT tournaments are a great source of inspiration for amateur players.
But where do the best players in the world actually play?

Major tournaments - where the professionals play

Table tennis tournaments (sometimes incorrectly called ping pong tournaments) take place all around the world and so, with table tennis associations now in 218 countries and territories, there's bound to be a tournament taking place somewhere near you right now.

But only professional players can take part in the Major international tournaments.

And it's these Major international table tennis tournaments that I'll be looking at here.

However, there are loads of tournaments organised for amateur players, so if you need more information about local and regional competitions and tournaments taking place near you, contact your National Association and they'll be able to help you.

But if you're looking for information about how to organise your own table tennis tournament, take a look at my other articles.

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Gaining in popularity

Table tennis is one of the largest participation sports in the world so there are local, regional, national, continental and international tournaments taking place all around the world.

And since table tennis became part of the Olympic Games in 1988, the sport is gaining in popularity every year.

(Information about running your own club and your own tournaments can be found here)

So let's now take a look at the Major tournaments for professional players.


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International Table Tennis Federation

The International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) governs the sport and therefore they set the official table tennis rules and regulations and award the organisation of Major tournaments to affiliated organisations around the world.

You'll find a calendar of international events here and you can get all the results of the Major tournaments by following the links below.

The results from these tournaments also enable the ITTF to produce a monthly world ranking list (sometimes known as a rating list).


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Olympic Games and World Championships

The two biggest tournaments for professional table tennis players are the Olympic Games and the World Championships.

The World Table Tennis Championships started in 1926 in London, England with Hungarian Roland Jacobi taking the inaugural men's singles title, whilst Yoo Nam Kyu became the first winner of the Olympic Games Table Tennis title when it became an Olympic Sport in his home country of South Korea in 1988.

The World Championships is considered to be the most important event by some players, whilst the Olympic Games is favoured by others because it's only held once every four years.


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Top International Table Tennis Tournaments

The top players also play in many other international tournaments throughout the year such as the World Cup, the World Team Cup and the series of tournaments which make up the ITTF World Tour.

And professional players also compete in their own continental tournaments such as...

  • African Championships, African Games, African Cup
  • Asian Championships, Asian Games, Asian Cup
  • European Championships, Euro Top 12
  • Latin American Championships, Latin American Cup
  • North-American Championships, North-American Cup
  • Oceania Championships, Oceania Cup

The list of competitions just goes on and on.

Some of the other significant tournaments are the Pan-American Games, the Commonwealth Games, the Mediterranean Games and the Arab Championship.


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Watch and Learn

If you get the chance to go to any Major table tennis tournaments I would urge you to go.

They provide great inspiration for any player, or prospective player, as you get to see the best players in action, close up.

I've been fortunate enough to attend some of these big events and in particular I remember the World Table Tennis Championships in Manchester, England in 1997 when the Swedish table tennis legend Jan-Ove Waldner won the men's singles title without losing a single game. Awesome.

1997 World Champion - Jan-Ove Waldner

You can also buy videos and DVDs of many of these top tournaments and although it's never as good as being there yourself, they're well worth watching as you can learn so much about the subtleties of this great game.

Another benefit of going to these table tennis competitions is that you get to see many of the table tennis manufacturers and have the chance to look at their table tennis equipment and try out different rackets (paddles / bats) etc.


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Now It's Your Turn

If you're a mere mortal like me, and you don't play the game like the Chinese table tennis professionals do, there'll be local and regional competitions taking place near you which you can play in.

If you need more information about local and regional competitions taking place near you, contact your National Association and they'll be able to help you.

I've played in lots of table tennis tournaments over the last 40 years, and I've also organised quite a few local events as well.

So, if you're looking for information about how to organise your own table tennis tournament you'll find all the details here.

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MORE PAGES ABOUT
MAJOR TT TOURNAMENTS
For more information about the major table tennis tournaments, take a look at my other articles...

Olympic Games

2004 Olympic Games - Athens, Greece

2008 Olympic Games - Beijing, China

2012 Olympic Games - London, England

2016 Olympic Games - Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

 

World Championships

 

ITTF World Tour

 

World Cup

 

European Championships

 

World Rankings

 

Table Tennis Events Calendars

 

Table Tennis Officials


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