Lausanne, Dec 17, 2013: The International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) is excited to announce the nominees for the 2013 ITTF Star Awards to be held in Raffles Hotel in Dubai on 11 January 2014.
The inaugural ITTF Star Awards will feature seven awards, including three chosen by the fans, with the proceeds of the night going to ITTF’s corporate social responsibility program Dream Building that raises money for Para Table Tennis, Development and Junior Table Tennis initiatives.
The nominees in the running to be crowned the 2013 table tennis stars are:
Male Table Tennis Star presented by Ping Pong Dubai, as selected by the ITTF Athletes Commission:
• Jean-Michel Saive (BEL) – In 2013 played the World Championships for a record 22nd time and the Men’s World Cup for the 18th time (record together with Jan-Ove Waldner). Became the President of the European Olympic Committee’s Athletes Commission, which is a first for a table tennis player.
• Zhang Jike (CHN) – 2013 singles World Table Tennis Champion, a year after he won gold at the London 2012 Olympic Games.
• Fan Zhendong (CHN) – Became the youngest ever winner of a ITTF World Tour event at just 16 years of age and rose to world number five.
• Kim Hyok Bong (PRK) – 2013 mixed doubles World Table Tennis Champion, which was the first ever gold medal for DPR Korea at an ITTF World Championships.
Female Table Tennis Star presented by Vision Dubai, as selected by the ITTF Athletes Commission:
• Li Xiaoxia (CHN) – 2013 singles and doubles World Table Tennis Champion, a year after she won gold at the London 2012 Olympic Games.
• Liu Shiwen (CHN) – 2013 Women’s World Cup Champion, current world number one.
• Natalia Partyka (POL) – 3 times Paralympic Champion, and is the first ITTF Dream Building Ambassador.
• Kim Jong (PRK) – 2013 mixed doubles World Table Tennis Champion, which was the first ever gold medal for DPR Korea at an ITTF World Championships.
Para Male Table Tennis Star presented by Tinsue, as selected by the ITTF Para Table Tennis Division:
• Ma Lin (CHN) – Gold in class nine at the 2013 Asian Championships in singles and team 2013 Korean Open gold in teams class eight-nine and silver in the singles.
• Robert Davis (ENG) – World number one in class one. 2013 European Championships gold in singles and team and 2013 Slovenian Open and German Open gold in singles and bronze in team.
• Thomas Schmidberger (GER) – Unbeaten since London 2012 Paralympics and has won about 60 matches this year. World number one in class three and number four in men wheelchair. 2013 European Championships, Czech Open, Italalian Open and Slovenian Open gold in singles.
Para Female Table Tennis Star, as selected by the ITTF Para Table Tennis Division:
• Melissa Tapper (AUS) – World number two in class ten. 2013 Bayreuth Open gold in singles and bronze at the 2013 Lasko Open and Bratislava Open.
• Sandra Paovic (CRO) – 2013 European Championships class 6 gold, also gold in the class six-seven events at the 2013 Slovenian Open, Hungarian Open (in her first ever event), and the Italian Open.
• Anna-Carin Ahlquist (SWE) – Unbeaten since London 2012 Paralympics. World number one in class three and two in women wheelchair. 2013 European Championships class three singles gold and 2013 Copa Tango Open, Slovenia Open, Germany Open and Italy Open singles and team gold.
The winners will be chosen by an expert ITTF panel and will be announced during the ITTF Star Awards on 11 January 2014.
The nominees and winners of the Fan’s Male Table Tennis Star presented by TMS International, the Fan’s Female Table Tennis Star presented by Nittaku and the Table Tennis Star Rally/Shot presented by TMS International will determined by a fans vote.
Fans need to visit ITTF.com/StarAwards by 4 January 2014 to register their vote.
Stay tuned on ITTF’s YouTube channel for the rest of the nomination videos.
Corporate dinner packages start from US$3,000 per table of 10 pax, while limited individual seats are available at US$300 per person. Some award sponsorships are also still available. Please contact Kimberly at [email protected] for more information. —- Photo by Remy Gros/ITTF