The Competition Review is moving to its next phase, which will see the future tournament landscape start to take shape.
Following an extensive consultation period, the Table Tennis England Board has agreed the vision and principles which will guide the next stage and has shared these with National Council and the Members’ Advisory Group.
Full details of the vision and principles can be downloaded below. They are considered to provide a robust basis on which to deliver the agreed aims of the Review. For background to the Review and its aims, please click here to view the consultation document.
Among the key principles are:
- Competition structure to consist of three strands: i) invitational National Championships/Cups/series, ii) tiered open tournaments, iii) national leagues. In addition, schools competitions as a discrete strand.
- Table Tennis England to structure and regulate more and deliver less.
- Introduction of a periodised calendar, with specific dates for competitions and tiered tournaments.
- Lower-tier tournaments to run at local level, mid-tier tournaments at regional/zonal level and higher-tier tournaments at national level.
- Make lower-level open events easier to access (eg potentially non-licensed, non-ranking) and more affordable to deliver (eg fewer umpiring requirements), with flexibility for innovative formats.
- Hosts to apply for events/ dates, which are apportioned centrally to maximise appropriate geographical spread for each age-group.
- Critical focus for national events on Cadet and Junior, with the introduction of regional series for U11/U13.
- More U21/U23 opportunities to bridge Junior-Senior transition and reduce dropout.
- Supporting increased women and girls’ participation via dedicated events and mixed gender opportunities.
- Offer Para categories at all core age-groups at National Championships (with support from BPTT) and support inclusive options and adaptive rules at open tournaments.
- Reducing boundaries and distinctions between event stakeholders (counties, regions, clubs, leagues) to create a consistent approach and opportunities for all.
- Recognition to be made in national league events of ‘proper clubs’ in order to support club development.
An outline proposal from the next stage of the Review is due to be presented to the Board in the autumn.
Table Tennis England’s Head of Competitions and Events Neil Rogers, who is Chair of the Competition Review Steering Group, said: “Sincere thanks to all those who submitted their feedback during the consultation phase, and to the individuals who took part in the forums and insight interviews.
“I am excited the Board has now agreed the foundations of the next phases of the project, and believe we have given ourselves the best opportunity to structure and agree meaningful change on a robust and informed basis – and to create a fit for purpose programme moving forward.”
If you have any queries about the Competition Review, click here to contact Neil Rogers.
What did the Competition Review consultation tell us?
A total of 385 completed responses were received to the online survey, which was open for five weeks in October and November 2021.
In addition, more than 20 one-to-one interviews and forums took place with individuals and stakeholder groups.
These included representatives from clubs and leagues, players and parents, National Council, Members’ Advisory Group and Schools Committee members, British Para Table Tennis, tournament organisers, referees and umpires, coaches including performance coaches, and a number of individuals with huge knowledge and experience of competitions.
A full overview of the agreed Vision and Principles, together with Next Steps can be downloaded below, as can a detailed analysis of the open consultation responses.