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Table Tennis: World Tour returns to North Korea after 36 years

Kim Hyok-bong and Kim Jong won the 2013 World Championship and last year’s Asian Games. Photo: ITTF.

North Korea’s Kim Hyok-bong and Kim Jong have won World Championship and Asian Games golds. Photo: ITTF.

June 23, 2015: International Table Tennis will return to North Korea for the first time since 1979 when the GAC Group World Tour Challenge Series Pyongyang Open is held from July 29-August 2.


The Pyongyang Open will be the 13th stop on this year’s World Tour and an opportunity to gain Road to Lisbon points to qualify for the year-ending World Tour Grand Final.


Steve Dainton, the ITTF’s Marketing Director, visited the country for a Pyongyang Open site inspection and said: “It was amazing to see one of the best table tennis facilities in the world when we visited Pyongyang. The venue will ensure it’s one of the best Challenge Series World Tour events of the year.


“It has also been 36 years since the last ITTF event was held there. Having seen the situation for myself I am sure it will truly be a memorable event.”


Kim Hyok-bong and Kim Jong brought North Korea into the international spotlight when they won the mixed doubles at the 2013 World Championship and the 2014 Asian Games.


Source: ITTF (; Editing by SportAsia

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