Sharing the Same Vision, Accord Signed

Lausanne – Switzerland, Oct 15, 2012: Accord Signed, Sensationally in the Russian capital city of Moscow in late May 2010, Singapore beat China in the final of the LIEBHERR World Team Championships; the trio of Feng Tianwei, Sun Beibei and Wang Yuegu rewrote the history books. Now, over two years after the stunning performance, Singapore looks to the future and looks to the future from within.

On Friday 12th October 2012, the Singapore Table Tennis Association (STTA) signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the International Table Tennis Federation to formalize a talent detection and youth promotion policy.

The basis of the Memorandum is that the champions from the Crocodile Challenge Cup, organised by the Singapore Table Tennis Association for Primary School Children, will be awarded places in the 2013 ITTF World Hopes Week and Challenge.

Growing Rapidly

A relatively new concept, the ITTF Hopes Week and Challenge is engineered by the ITTF Education and Training Department under the direction of Mikael Andersson. It is a rapidly growing initiative with over 70 countries being involved in 2012 and all six continents affiliated to the International Table Tennis Federation represented. In 2013, the ITTF Hopes Week and Challenge will be staged at the Werner Schlager Academy in Schwechat, Austria from Sunday 8th to Sunday 16th June 2012.

“Since setting up the ITTF Asia Pacific Office in Singapore, the International Table Tennis Federation is committed to helping the Singapore Table Tennis Association in its strategy and future directions”, said Judit Farago, the Chief Executive Officer of the International Table Tennis Federation. “Young aspiring athletes have been at the heart of ITTF Development for several years now and the Global Junior Programme has matured in to an integral part of the ITTF structure.”

In less than ten years, the ITTF Junior Circuit has grown from a handful of tournaments that could be counted on the fingers of one hand to over 30 in 2013; a mark of the maturity of the Global Junior Programme.

New Concept

“A relatively new programme within the structure is the Hopes Programme which targets talented players at young age”, continued Judit Farago. “The ITTF is extremely pleased that the STTA has set up a national event to choose its players to attend the Hopes Challenge week; this is exactly in line with the concept and pathway we envisage for this programme, it is only natural and with great pleasure that the ITTF supports the STTA in this initiative.”

It is an enterprising scheme and one which fulfils the objectives of both the International Table Tennis Federation and the Singapore Table Tennis Association.

Same Vision

“Both the ITTF and the STTA share the same vision: to groom and nurture the younger generation into tomorrow’s sportsmen and sportswomen”, said Dr Lee Bee Wah, Member of Parliament and the far seeing President of the Singapore Table Tennis Association. “The Memorandum of Understanding formalises our commitment to groom more local talents and develop them into champions of tomorrow”, she continued. “The STTA believes in supporting our young talents to oversee training and competition stints at an early age as this will give the young paddlers and early advantage in the sport; this initiative has been made possible thanks to the sponsorship received from Crocodile International.”

Crocodile International

A highly reputable company, Crocodile International was formed in 1947 and produces a wide range of men’s and women’s fashionable clothing.

Official Launch

The official launch was held at the Tanglin International Centre. In addition to Judit Farago and Dr Lee Bee Wah: Wong Hui Leng was present on behalf of the Singapore Table Tennis Association as was Steve Dainton, the Director of the Asia Pacific Office, on behalf of the International Table Tennis Federation. —- ITTF/ Photo by Kimberly Koh

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