The fourth edition of Ultimate Table Tennis (UTT), scheduled in India from August 14 to 31, has been indefinitely postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
With sporting events yet to start in the country and the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) itself still not certain about the resumption of professional tour, the postponement was inevitable.
UTT, which began in 2017, was to take place after the Tokyo Olympics, which has now been moved to next year because of the pandemic.
”You need permissions from the state and central government, check players availability and discussions with the ITTF have to take place. I see none of that happening in the near future,” former player and promoter of UTT, 11sports director Kamlesh Mehta told PTI.
”We would want it to happen later this year but will have to talk to ITTF for the new dates as we always decide our schedule depending on the world body’s calendar. But right now none has any clarity, including the ITTF. We can only wait and watch.”
UTT got an official window in the ITTF calendar for the first two years but with professional season getting busier, it did not get one last year.
Though Chinese players have stayed away from taking part in the UTT, the event has attracted top players from Germany, Sweden, Chinese Taipei, Hong Kong and Portugal.
The league has also provided much needed exposure to the budding talent in India besides quality competition to the country’s best players, including Sharath Kamal, G Sathiyan and Manika Batra.