TTFI to have foreign coach by the end of December, says M.P. Singh

M.P. Singh, Secretary, TTFI said that those who are ranked in the top 50 in the world in youth and senior should play at least three zonal and the National championships

M.P. Singh.   -  Ritu Raj Konwar

Upset at the lack of top Indian players taking part in the domestic events this year, Table Tennis Federation of India (TTFI) has made certain decisions in its Executive Board meeting here, which would ensure they play in a certain number of National-ranking tournaments if they wish to be included in the National team. This will come into effect from the next calendar year.

Speaking to Sportstar, here, on Sunday, M.P. Singh, Secretary, TTFI said that those who are ranked in the top 50 in the world in youth and senior (men & women) should play at least three zonal (excluding inter-institutional) and the National championships, while those ranked between 50 and 100, should take part in four zonal and the Nationals.

“We will ask the players to come forward with their plans for the next year and we will discuss with them how to proceed,” said Singh.

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He also said that TTFI will have a foreign coach for the senior National team by the end of December this year. “Before the National championships [in Cuttack from January 4 to 9, 2019], we will have the [foreign] coach as he has to have a look at all the players,” said Singh. Till that time, former National champion Manjit Singh Dua will be in charge.

In a major decision, TTFI decided unanimously to disaffiliate Kerala Table Tennis Association following complaints from district associations.

Two other associations from Sikkim and Daman & Diu were given provision affiliations to promote table tennis in these states. Nagaland was also readmitted into the TTFI fold after the north-eastern state corrected the anomalies.

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However, the issue of Tamil Nadu Table Tennis Association (TNTTA) still remains unresolved because of the litigation between two parties in the state.

A.V. Vidyasagar, who was present at the meeting as purportedly elected secretary of TNTTA has been given a month’s time to reach out to the parties concerned for a compromise, especially its district affiliates, or go for a fresh elections after necessarily registering the body under the Registrar of Societies Act, amending TNTTA’s constitution and bylaws in tune with TTFI’s bylaws, rules and regulations as well as guidelines. As of now, TNTTA is registered under the Companies Act.

Vidyasagar has assured the members that he would comply with the suggestions within the given time frame. “If it is not done, will consider de-affiliating TNTTA,” said Singh.

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The EB took a firm view of the two existing associations — West Bengal Table Tennis Association and North Bengal TTA — in West Bengal and advised the secretaries of each for a unification. Both have been given one-month time to effect the merger.

The Commonwealth table tennis championships in July 2019 will be held at Lucknow. The season’s junior and youth Nationals have been re-allotted to Haryana — they were originally allotted to Tamil Nadu — and the events would be held between December 25 and 30 at Sonepat.