Lausanne, Dec 17, 2014: The International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) is excited to unveil the nominees for the Male & Female Para Star, Star Coach and Star Point, which will be announced at the Dubai 2014 ITTF Star Awards in Dubai on 7 January 2015.
The 2nd edition of the ITTF Star Awards will take place at the Armani Hotel, at the base of the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa, which is a fitting location to honor the world’s best players.
The nominees in the running to be crowned a 2014 Table Tennis Star are:
Female Para Table Tennis Star presented by Stag
• Sandra PAOVIC (CRO)- World number 1 in Women’s Class 6, 2014 Para Table Tennis World Championships Class 6 Women’s Singles winner;
• MAO Jingdian (CHN)- World number 2 in Women’s Class 8, 2014 Asian Para Games Class 8 Women’s Singles & Class 6-8 Women’s Teams winner, 2014 Para Table Tennis World Championships Class 8 Women’s Singles & Class 6-8 Women’s Teams winner;
• Melissa TAPPER (AUS)- World number 6 in Women’s Class 10, 2014 Para Table Tennis World Championships Class 10 Women’s Singles bronze medalist.
Male Para Table Tennis Star presented by Tinsue
• Alvaro VALERA (ESP)- World number 1 in Men’s Class 6, 2014 Para Table Tennis World Championships Class 6 Men’s Singles & Class 6-7 Men’s Team winner;
• Holger NIKELIS (GER)- World number 2 in Men’s Class 1, 2014 Para Table Tennis World Championships Class 1 Men’s Singles bronze medalist & Class 1 Men’s Teams silver medalist;
• Nesim TURAN (TUR)- World number 3 in Men’s Class 4, 2014 Para Table Tennis World Championships Class 4 Men’s Singles winner & Class 5 Men’s Teams silver medalist.
Star Coach presented by Butterfly
• KONG Linghui (CHN)- Head coach of Chinese Women’s National Team. Coached the Chinese women’s team to 24 wins and no defeats at the ZEN-NOH 2014 World Team Table Tennis Championships;
• Pedro RUFINO (POR)- Head-coach of Portuguese Men’s National Team.Coached the men’s team from quarterfinal the year before to gold this year in the European Championship team event. They were only one set from being eliminated in the group stage, and they turned it around to win gold. All the top players in Portugal has better ranking now then in the beginning of the year;
• Volker ZIEGLER (GER)- Head-coach of German Para Table Tennis National Team. After taking over the national-team in 2013, Germany has doubled up the amount of medals from four (comparing from last World Championship 2010 and Paralympics games 2012) to eight medals at this year’s Para World Championship.
• Chuang Chih-Yuan vs Joo Se Hyuk – ZEN-NOH 2014 World Team Table Tennis Championships
• Quadri Aruna vs Zhang Jike – LIEBHERR 2014 Men’s World Cup
• Ma Long vs Fan Zhendong – GAC Group 2014 ITTF World Tour – China Open
• Feng Tianwei vs SEO Hyowon – ZEN-NOH 2014 World Team Table Tennis Championships
• Ding Ning vs Wu Yang – GAC Group 2014 ITTF World Tour – China Open
The Star Point will be determined by the public vote at ITTFStarAwards.com and the other three categories chosen by an expert panel made up from ITTF officials, their peers and members of the media. —- ITTF