Youngsters looking to earn their places at the Mark Bates Ltd 2021/22 Cadet & Junior National Championships will have ample opportunities to qualify via a 4* event.
There are seven cadet and junior 4* competitions on the calendar for next season, including six in the qualifying window for the Cadet & Junior Nationals.
The key dates are:
- Blackpool 4* – 11th-12th September 2021
- Stockton 4* – 23rd-24th October
- Chandlers 4* – 13th-14th November
- Cippenham 4* – 4th-5th December
- London 4* (TBC) – 29th-30th January 2022
- Plymouth 4* – 19th-20th February
- Cadet & Junior Nationals – 30th April-1st May
The St Neots/Cambridge 4* takes place after the Nationals, on 7th-8th May.
Invitations will be based on the rankings published in March 2022 and all invitees must have participated in at least two 4* events, notwithstanding mitigating circumstances. Invitations will be issued to 20 players from the ranking list plus 10 qualifying from 4* events. Two wildcards are available and will default to qualifiers if unused.
All boys and girls Cadet (U15) and Junior (U19) 4* winners will receive an automatic invitation if they meet the 2x 4* entry requirement and, thereafter, qualifiers will be determined by a ‘leaderboard’ approach.
Seedings for the Nationals will be based on the rankings published in April 2022.
This process had already been announced for season 2020/21 but has not been implemented because of the pandemic.
Neil Rogers, Table Tennis England’s Head of Competition & Events said: “We are excited to introduce this new initiative after the delay due to covid – this is designed to incentivise player entry to 4* events, and to provide a qualification route to the Cadet and Junior National Championships.
“A similar process has been very successful for the Senior National Championships, and gives the opportunity for all members to play their way into the flagship national event for these age groups.”