Athletes prepare for historic World Intellectual Impairment Sport World Table Tennis Championships
Around 65 athletes from 14 countries have begun to arrive in Hradec Kralove, Czech Republic, for the 2017 International Federation for Intellectual Impairment Sport (World Intellectual Impairment Sport) World Table Tennis Championships which get underway on Monday (23 October).
As well as athletes with intellectual impairments, the Championships will be the first to feature new trial eligibility groups for Down’s syndrome and autism.
Amongst those playing will be defending women’s singles champion Ka Man Wong and Mui Wui Ng, both from Hong Kong.
London 2012 Paralympic champion Wong lost out on a medal to her teammate at Rio 2016. Ng claimed bronze in the women’s singles.
Wong, who has the benefit of 17 years’ experience playing the sport, sees Hradec Kralove 2017 as a crucial stop on the calendar:
“I hope I can perform well in the competition and strive for medals. This is one of the most important competitions after the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games. I am looking forward to it.”
Ng is also targeting the podium:
“My aim for the Championships is to gain more competition experience and at the same time, striving for my best performance and fighting for medals,” Ng said. “There are lots of competitive players. If I have to win a game, I have to be focused and put my best effort during the games.”
In addition Wong and Ng are the defending women’s doubles champions.
In the men’s competition France’s Lucas Creange is the singles title holder. He returns to defend his gold from Guayaquil, Ecuador, in 2015.
Creange will also aim to retain the men’s team crown alongside Richard Vallee and Antoine Zhao who competed two years ago.
The hosts are sending a strong squad that features Denis Ksandr, Lukas Schauer, Marcela Cervenakova, Jana Feixova, Jan Pokuta, Ondrej Vitvar, Denisa Macurova, Kveta Telvakova, Filip Zahalka, Pavel Richter and Marie Horvathova.
Hradec Kralove 2017 officially opens on 22 October, with competition running from 23-27 October.
News and updates will be available at the World Intellectual Impairment Sport website (www.inas.org) and Facebook and Twitter.
Results will be available every day at the competition website.
About World Intellectual Impairment Sport
World Intellectual Impairment Sport represents more than 300,000 athletes with intellectual impairments around the world. We give elite athletes the chance to compete at an international level and on the Paralympic stage. But we cannot continue our work towards the inclusion of the people with intellectual impairments in society without your support.
We are a registered charity and your help can make a big difference. Find out more.