Nine African countries will join their 99 counterparts across the globe to compete for diadems as the 2017 ITTF World Championship kicks off on Monday May 29 (Today) in Dusseldorf, Germany.
African superpowers – Nigeria and Egypt will lead the continent contingent at the eight-day biggest table tennis tournament in 2017.
All eyes will be the continent’s super stars – Aruna Quadri of Nigeria and Omar Assar of Egypt with Quadri being German fans favourite following his 2014 exploits in Dusseldorf when he became the first African players to make it to the quarterfinal of the ITTF World Cup.
Over 613 players from 108 countries will compete in singles, doubles and mixed doubles for eight-days for the coveted titles held by China.
Also, there will be 66 tables used across the two competition halls and training venuewith 7,000 specially branded balls supplied by Nittaku exclusively for the World Championships. The athletes will have a great deal of court to cover, with 7,000 square metres of Gerflor flooring being used. And they will be kept in line by 150 umpires.
Approximately 50,000 spectators are expected to fill the two competition halls during the tournament. Coincidentally, they will be sitting in grandstand constructed out of just over 50,000 individual parts.