2017 ITTF World Tour Grand Finals
December is about as exciting a time as it gets in the world of professional competitive sports, and the ITTF World Tour Grand Finals is no exception. The world of professional Table Tennis is eagerly in waiting for the finals scheduled to kick off on December 14th.
This year, the event will be played in Astana, Kazakhstan. The top 16 men and women from the 2017 Table Tennis World Tour will battle it out for the prize pool of $1,000,000.00, with only the best in the world being afforded an opportunity to compete in the finals.
The final list of this year’s singles as well as doubles games competitors has been confirmed and includes top notch players like Timo Boll, Bo Fang and Ying Han.
No Country For Old Men
Teenagers Tomokazu Harimoto and Miu Hirano have both qualified to play in the 2017 ITTF World Tour Grand Finals. 14 year old Harimoto will be playing thanks to having automatically qualified, as will Miu Hirano.
World number 6 Jun Mizutani did not qualify due to his not having met the minimum requirement of competing in at least five of the tour events.
Tomokazu Harimoto will be joined by Kenta Matsudaira, Masaki Yoshida and Yuya Oshima in the men’s singles division. Japanese players Kasumi Ishikawa and Mima Ito will compete in the women’s singles division.
The qualification criteria for the finals competition are very strict and have always been. The criteria are as follows:
- At least 5 events at the ITTF World Tour must have been attended by the player wanting to compete in the finals;
- The Top 15 players who have managed to accumulate the most points on the World Tour standing are invited to play in the finals;
- One additional player will be invited by the ITTF – this will be a player from the host association; and
- If a player from the host association is already among the Top 15 players, or in the event that no players from the host association had met the first requirement of having had to compete in at least 5 events on the ITTF World Tour, then the 16th player in the general running order will be invited to play in the finals.
The qualification criteria for the doubles events are as strict as those that apply to the singles events. The same doubles pair has had to play at least 4 World Tour events in order to qualify.
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