Dubai, Oct 21, 2013: The International Table Tennis Federation has awarded Dubai the hosting rights for the GAC Group 2013 ITTF World Tour Grand Finals to be held 9-12 January 2014.
For a second year in a row, the prize money for the event will be over the million-dollar mark, which makes it the most lucrative tournament in the sport of table tennis.
“After visiting Dubai and meeting with the UAETTA president, Dawoud El-Hajri, I am very confident that we will have a great event in Dubai. In addition, we have made arrangements for many other activities at that time, including the 2nd Dream Building fund-raising dinner and many other surprises. It will be for sure a week to remember and a great way to start 2014,” said Adham Sharara, ITTF president.
The 2013 World Tour Grand Finals will have a sparkle of Hollywood with movie star and table tennis enthusiast Susan Sarandon invited as a VIP to host the event’s draw and press conference at the new SPiN Dubai club.
The United Arab Emirates is no stranger to hosting big international table tennis events, with Kuwait and Qatar regularly hosting World Tour events and Qatar hosting the ITTF World Team Championships in 2004.
The World Tour Grand Finals is the finale of the GAC Group 2013 World Tour, which comprises of events in 18 different countries, making it a truly global affair.
Only the top 16 men and women singles, 8 men and women doubles pairs and 8 under-21 singles players who have accumulated the most World Tour points, and participated in at least 5 World Tour events will be invited to Dubai.
World number ones MA Long (CHN) and LIU Shiwen (CHN) currently lead the World Tour standings with the following four events to go:
• GAC Group 2013 Polish Open (Major Series) Spala, Poland: 6-10 November
• GAC Group 2013 German Open (Super Series) Berlin, Germany: 13-17 November
• GAC Group 2013 Russian Open (Major Series) Ekaterinburg, Russia: 20-24 November
GAC Group 2013 Swedish Open (Major Series) Stockholm, Sweden: 27 November – 1 December. —- ITTF/ Photo by UAETT