Principal Correspondent

HYDERABAD: The Table Tennis Federation of India will host the India Open championship in Delhi from June 16 to 20 as a test event ahead of the 2010 Commonwealth Games to be held in the national capital, according to Mr. V.K. Bawa, treasurer of the Federation.

Mr. Bawa addressed the media along with Mr. Raul Calin, Director, Junior Global Programmes of International Table Tennis Federation after the latter inspected the Kotla Vijaya Bhaskara Reddy indoor stadium (Hyderabad) on Thursday, which is to be venue of the ITTF Global Cadet Challenge and the ITTF Global Junior Circuit to be held in November this year.

“The India Open event will feature the top players of the world and will carry a total prize money of $1 lakh,” Mr. Bawa said. The TTFI official also disclosed that India will play a three ‘Test' series in Delhi against England as part of the preparations for the Commonwealth Games. Mr. Calin said he was pleased with the facilities available for the World cadet and the junior championship to be held in Hyderabad. V. Radha, Director of SAAP, assured complete support to the championship and also for any further improvements at the venue since the State Government has decided to promote Hyderabad through this event. Mr. Calin said that the cadets event would not carry any prize money but the juniors circuit would have $36,000 prize money, split equally for boys and girls.

“India is eligible for two entries each in the boys and girls sections respectively besides two wild cards in the junior circuit event. In the cadets event, it will be four each in boys and girls categories.” Mr. N. Ganesan, international referee, will be the chief referee for the World Cadet and the Juniors Circuit in Hyderabad. Mr. S.M. Sultan, secretary of AP Table Tennis Association, said the inspiration for hosting the event was the ‘golden' performance of the sub-juniors in the last Nationals. “We hope that the event in November will provide a platform for the young talent of India to come up with impressive performances.”

More In: SPORT | Today's Paper