Table Tennis England Newsletter

To:    Members of Table Tennis England
From: Sandra Deaton, Chair, Table Tennis England
Table Tennis England
Norfolk House, 88 Saxon Gate West
Milton Keynes, MK9 2DL

In this newsletter:
* Vote of confidence with secure funding
* Blog: Behind the scenes at Milton Keynes
* Membership
* Plastic balls
* Brian Halliday
* Senior National Championships
* World Championship of Ping Pong
* Table Tennis England elections
* Congratulations to . . .
(As always, we will summarise the news and then provide a link to more information on each topic)

Table Tennis secures funding

I am delighted to be able to start the first newsletter of the New Year with some good news.  We have just heard from Sport England that table tennis has been taken off ‘special measures’ and has returned to secure funding.  For the past two years we have been restructuring ourselves and the way we manage our sport to demonstrate to our partners and financial supporters that we are a governing body which is ‘fit for purpose’.
We are now back on course and able to plan for the future with renewed confidence.  I am incredibly grateful to the senior management team, the board, the staff, the volunteers and the whole table tennis family who have helped with this transition.
I am determined that we will build for a positive future for table tennis; that we will not be complacent and that table tennis is never placed in such a position again.

Blog: Behind the scenes in Milton Keynes

We could not have achieved this without taking a long, close look at ourselves and setting clear objectives and targets. In our latest blog, Table Tennis England Chief Executive Sara Sutcliffe looks at the progress made towards achieving the key short-term objectives in order to establish the foundations for a longer-term 10-year strategy.

Membership of Table Tennis England

I am also pleased to be able to say that the Board is recommending to the AGM that there should be no increase in membership fees for the next 12 months.  This is due in part to some cost-saving exercises, but we also wanted to bring in a ‘freeze’ on fees while we re-assess the members’ benefits package.
We will be looking closely at what benefits we can give you as individual players of table tennis, and also at what benefits there are to the game in general and the wider table tennis community by being part of a strong association.

Plastic balls

Following the ITTF’s decision to introduce plastic balls last year, we would remind clubs and leagues that, with effect from July 1 2015, plastic balls should be used in all Competitive Table Tennis (as defined in Regulations) in England.
There have been changes in equipment and rules in the past - black and red rubbers; from 21 to 11 - which have taken time to implement and adapt.  However, in order to play on a level playing field, at home and abroad, we have to adhere to the international regulations.
In England, this follows the end of a transitional year in which organisers of Competitive Table Tennis have been able to choose either plastic or celluloid balls, as set out in our announcement of July 8, 2014.  We recommend that clubs and leagues purchase adequate stocks of plastic balls in good time for the coming season.
We will be issuing more information on the website about detailed points which have been raised with us in the near future.

Brian Halliday

It is with great sadness that we heard of the recent passing of Brian Halliday.  Brian had been a player, coach, organiser, writer and life-long table tennis enthusiast.  His love of and passion for the game never diminished.   He devoted many years as a volunteer at local, county and national level, and is perhaps, best remembered for the immense contribution he made as a writer and promoter of the sport.  Our condolences to his family and friends.  Alan Ransome pays a fitting tribute.

Senior National Championships

Tickets are now available for the Senior National Championships from February 27 to March 1, 2015 at the Redbridge Sport and Leisure Centre in Essex.


This year elections will be held for the Elected Directors of Table Tennis England, namely Chairman, Deputy Chairman and Treasurer, for the four-year period from 2015 to 2019.

World Championships of Ping Pong

Some elite players from the world of table tennis changed their rubbers for sand-paper at the recent World Championship of Ping Pong.  It brought a version of the sport to a wider audience through Sky television and captured the imagination of viewers . . . who I hope will see it as encouragement to pick up a bat and ball and join a club.  Our Table Tennis England Board member, Colin Wilson, was on the Sky Sports commentary team, and here he explains something of the difference and similarities between the game as played in the WCPP and table tennis as we know it.

Congratulations to . . .

. . . Andrew Baggaley, who won the aforementioned World Championship of Ping Pong after a weekend of sandpaper bat Ping Pong in front of the TV cameras.
. . . Paul Drinkhall, who has been called up to play in the European Top 16 event in Baku from February 6 to 8.
. . . Sam Walker, who reached the last 32 of the Hungarian Open, beating several higher ranked players including World No 79 Kalinikos Kreanga of Greece.
. . . Rising star Jamie Liu, from the Kingfisher Club, Reading, who won the under-11 boys’ singles at the Mini Cadet Open in Budapest, Hungary.
. . . Barnes Primary School and London Academy who were double winners at the Jack Petchey London Schools Table Tennis Team Finals.  And congratulations to all other winners and the young participants... and thanks to Jack Petchey CBE, whose sponsorship and support makes this event possible.
. . . Our England players who have climbed up the world rankings.  Paul Drinkhall (No 33 - a new personal high); Liam Pitchford (from 49 to 45); Andrew Baggaley (from 163 to 150); Darius Knight (from 248 to 226); Sam Walker (from 283 to 269); Joanna Drinkhall (No 116); Kelly Sibley (from 157 to 155); Tin-Tin Ho (from 221 to 214, and from 55 to 36 in the U/21s); Hannah Hicks (from 351 to 333) and Karina Le Fevre unchanged at 358.

Best wishes
Sandra Deaton
Chair, Table Tennis England
February 2015

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