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Table Tennis: Chinese stars, North Korean duo nominated for Star Awards

Zhang Jike is one of four nominees for Male Table Tennis Star at the inaugural ITTF Star Awards, which will be held in Dubai on January 11. Photo: Remy Gros/ITTF.

Zhang Jike is one of four nominees for Male Table Tennis Star at the inaugural ITTF Star Awards, which will be held in Dubai on January 11. Photo: Remy Gros/ITTF.

December 17, 2013: China’s Zhang Jike, gold medallist at the London Olympics and this year’s World Championships in Paris, is among four Male Table Tennis Star nominees for the 2013 ITTF Star Awards, which will be held in Dubai’s Raffles Hotel on January 11, 2014.

 

The ITTF (International Table Tennis Federation) announced four nominees for each of the Male Table Tennis Star and Female Table Tennis Star awards, and three each for the Para Male Table Tennis Star and Para Female Table Tennis Star categories.

 

An ITTF panel will choose the winners, while the proceeds of the awards night will go to ITTF’s corporate social responsibility programme, Dream Building, which raises money for Para Table Tennis, Development and Junior Table Tennis initiatives.

 

Zhang, 25, will be up against teenage compatriot Fan Zhendong, who became the youngest ever of an ITTF World Tour event at just 16 years old and is now World No. 5.

 

Jean-Michel Saive, the 44-year-old Belgian who played in the World Championships for a record 22nd time and the World Cup for a record-equalling 18th time, and Kim Hyok-bong, who won the mixed doubles with Kim Jong for North Korea’s first-ever gold medal at the World Championships, are the other two Male Star nominees.

 

Kim Jong is among the four nominees for the Female Table Tennis Star.

 

China’s World Cup winner Liu Shiwen, the current World No. 1; compatriot Li Xiaoxia, who won the singles and doubles titles at the World Championships a year after her Olympic gold; and Poland’s Natalia Partyka, a three-time Paralympic Champion and the first ITTF Dream Building Ambassador, are also nominees.

 

The Para Male Star nominees are China’s Ma Lin, England’s Robert Davis and Germany’s Thomas Schmidberger, while the Para Female Star contenders are Australia’s Melissa Tapper, Croatia’s Sandra Paovic and Sweden’s Anna-Carin Ahlquist.

 

In addition, fans will vote for three awards – Fan’s Male Table Tennis Star, Fan’s Female Table Tennis Star and the Table Tennis Star Rally/Shot of the year. Fans can register a vote on ITTF.com/StarAwards by January 4, 2014 and watch award nomination videos here.

 

For more details, visit www.ittf.com or http://www.youtube.com/ittfchannel

 

Source: ITTF

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