Unprecedented Interest to host 2021 and 2022 World Table Tennis Championships
The International Table Tennis (ITTF) has received an unprecedented amount of interest to host the newly reformed 2021 & 2022 World Table Tennis Championships Finals after the closing of the interest phase on 30 September 2018.
The 2021 World Table Tennis Championships Finals will be the first edition under the expansion of the World Championships to ensure maximum participation of ITTF member National Associations, the concept which was approved at the 2018 Board of Directors (BOD) Meeting in Halmstad, Sweden.
For the two World Championships a total of 13 countries from every continent have officially registered their interest.
Eight countries: Australia, Chile, Germany, Morocco, Puerto Rico, Qatar, Tunisia and the United States of America, have expressed their interest to host the 2021 edition. Chile, Germany, Morocco, Puerto Rico and Tunisia also expressed interest for 2022 World Team Table Tennis Championships Finals, together with China, Japan, Portugal, Romania and Spain.
The expressions of interest received from Africa (Morocco, Tunisia), Pan America (Chile, Puerto Rico, USA) and Oceania (Australia) also meant that they are in the running to host the second only World Table Tennis Championships to be held outside of Asia & Europe. The first & only being held in Cairo, Egypt in 1939.
ITTF CEO Steve DAINTON stated "When we went through the study of the World Championships it was the fact that it was harder and harder to find hosts that was one of the key reasons to encourage the change. I do not think any of us could ever imagine 13 countries showing official interest, but with the change we can all be proud that it shows we can take the biggest table tennis event on earth to "all corners of the globe. Eight official expressions of interest were from countries that have never hosted before. It once again proves that changes to the structure, rather than rules, needs to be our focus in the next years – it's really unbelievable."
Following the closing of the interest phase, the interested cities will have to submit their detailed bids and commitment to bid before 31 December 2018, which the ITTF Selection panel will analyze and conduct inspections in January & February 2019.
The bidders will be invited to present their final bid book to the ITTF and all National Associations for voting at the ITTF Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Budapest, Hungary, where a final decision on the 2021 and 2022 World Championships host will be made in April 2019.