Work has been ongoing to try to establish complete and accurate records of all our senior international players and the number of international caps they have.

The first stage of this daunting task was to clarify the criteria and to ensure there was a common standard which would apply from the very first international in 1923 up to the present day and beyond. The England team for the first international match is pictured above.

England caps criteria

To be awarded an England cap is the highest honour a player can receive from their country. The criteria to qualify for a senior cap should reflect the high esteem of the honour and not be awarded lightly. The criteria provide consistency from the first international match in 1923, reflect the current practice and ensure a common standard is applied in the future.

  • To qualify for an official senior international cap a player has to play for England in a ‘bona fide’ senior international team match against another nation.
  • One cap is to be awarded for each country played.
  • The events which meet the qualification requirements are:
  1. Staged International matches including, for example, such competitions as the Quadrangular/Home Nations, International Matches approved by England and the National Association of the other team.
  2. Major International Team Championships, for example: World Team Championships, World Team Cup, European Team Championships, European Team Championships Qualification, Commonwealth Championships, Commonwealth Games.
  3. Any Team Event in an ITTF Open or other approved Open tournament.
  • Only matches where a player represents England qualify, playing in a match for Great Britain and Northern Ireland does not qualify eg Olympic Games, European Games.
  • Playing in an England ‘B’ team does not qualify.
  • A match has to be played to qualify, being selected but not playing does not qualify.
  • A senior cap is awarded only for a senior event. Higher or lower age categories do not qualify.

The initial phase, up to the start of the Second World War, has now been carried out and the details, as far as have been able to be ascertained, are shown in the document which can be downloaded at the foot of this page or by clicking the button below.

In the earlier days there was no official magazine and information has been taken from the ETTA Official Handbooks, programmes and other publications.

Work will continue on the years from 1945. If any former or current senior internationals would like to contact me with details of their playing career at senior level, it would be most helpful in compiling and helping ensure the accuracy of the last 78 years.

Additionally, if anyone has any information about any of the early players (including photographs) and/or any of those pre-war international matches, then I would be delighted to hear from you.

Please email [email protected] or telephone 01424 216342.