ITTF World Cup Macao 2024 begins Monday

<p>Galaxy Arena in Macao <em>(Photo from ITTF website)</em></p>

Galaxy Arena in Macao (Photo from ITTF website)

MACAO – The International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) World Cup Macao 2024 started on Monday, with 48 male and 48 female paddlers competing respectively at the grand Galaxy Arena here.

Reigning men's and women's World Cup Champions Fan Zhendong and Chen Meng arrived to defend their titles, and they were joined by the world's current top-ranked paddlers, Wang Chuqin and Sun Yingsha.

Petra Sorling, president of the ITTF and member of the International Olympic Committee, said the World Cup, occurring approximately 100 days before the Paris 2024 Olympic Games, serves as both preparation and qualification for athletes, emphasizing its paramount importance.

Liu Guoliang, ITTF deputy president and president of the Chinese Table Tennis Association, said Macao is one of the cities that most support the events under the ITTF.

He added that the athletes in this World Cup are not only top players in the world but also the pride of their associations, as well as their countries and regions.

Sanctioned by the ITTF and organized by the Sports Bureau of Macao and other institutions, the competition will be held April 15-21.

The Macao competition also marks the long-awaited return of the singles World Cup after a three-year hiatus, according to the ITTF. (Xinhua)