Nittaku ITTF Monthly Pongcast

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In the latest episode of ITTF Monthly Pongcast, the team delve into

– Final candidates for Qatar 2016 ITTF World Tour Grand Finals and for the 2016 ITTF World Junior Circuit Finals

– Yuya Oshima win in the Swedish Open

– Kenta Matsudaira memorable victory at the Austrian Open

– The Hungarian Junior and Cadet Open

All this and much more in November’s Pongcast.

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Yuya Oshima secures Qatar berth

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In-form: Oshima.

Oshima defeated Swede Mattias Karlsson in the final, a direct shootout for the last and final Grand Finals position, which will be held 8-11 December 2016 in Doha, Qatar.

After the defining match, the 22-year-old stated: “This is my best performance ever. I’m very glad with this result. I can’t wait to compete at the World Tour Grand Finals in a few weeks’ time.”

Oshima secured the last ticket to Doha, but it was Olympic champion and world number one MA Long (CHN) who held the top place of the 2016 World Tour standings after the 20 ITTF World Tour events this year. MA secured two World Tour titles in Germany and Qatar this year, and will be aiming to defend his World Tour Grand Finals title he won in Lisbon last year to cap off a dream year.

MA will be joined by his team mates Fan Zhendong, Xu Xin and Zhang Jike in Doha, with China securing the top four places in the World Tour Standings. Next on the list is Rio 2016 Olympic Games bronze medalist Jun Mizutani (JPN), who has won the World Tour Grand Finals on two occasions and clinched three World Tour titles in 2016.

Like fellow Olympic Champion MA Long, DING Ning (CHN) also topped the World Tour Standing on the women’s singles side winning 2016 two World Tour events. The 2015 World Tour Grand Finals champion is followed on the list by world number two Liu Shiwen (CHN) and 2014 World Tour Finals Champion Japan’s Kasumi Ishikawa.

Table tennis’s youngest ever Olympic medalist, 16-year-old Mima ITO (JPN), secured her place on the back of winning the Austrian Open one week ago, with the Japanese superstar being in danger of missing the $500,000 event prior to her victory.

The Seamaster Qatar 2016 ITTF World Tour Grand Finals is the most lucrative table tennis event on the globe, with only the top 16 men and women players from the 20 2016 ITTF World Tour events securing their place in Doha.

In addition to the singles competition, eight men’s and women’s doubles pairs and eight men’s and women’s under 21 players will also be making their way to Doha to compete in the event.

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Seamaster joins forces with Qatar to title sponsor end of year ITTF events

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The premier year-ending events will now be called the Seamaster Qatar 2016 ITTF Star Awards which will be held on 8 December, and Seamaster Qatar 2016 ITTF World Tour Grand Finals which will take place from 8-11 December.

“The ITTF is very happy that Seamaster has come on board for our two prestigious end-of-year events,” said President Thomas Weikert. “Seamaster is becoming a very valuable partner for the ITTF after also sponsoring the successful Women’s World Cup earlier this year in USA.”

In addition to being the title sponsor for 2016, Seamaster is also sponsoring the ITTF Star Point award and Breakthrough Star at the table tennis’ night of nights which celebrates the world’s best table tennis players for their achievements in 2016.

The Seamaster Qatar 2016 ITTF World Tour Grand Finals is the season ending finale which had 20 stops in 2016. Only the top 16 men and women with the most points from the 20 World Tour events qualify for the $500,000 event, ensuring only the best table tennis players will be making the trip to Qatar.

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