Eight years after it was staged on the continent of Africa, the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) World Cadet Challenge will return to Africa in 2015 as the 13th edition of the tournament will be staged in Egypt.

The maiden edition of the championship, which was staged in the Hungarian town of Tiszaujvaros produced China’s Zhang Jike and Cao Zhen as champions and the players have progressed to be World champions, having won the respective Boys’ Singles and Girls’ Singles events in Hungary.   With Egypt hosting the world in October, it will be the second time that the tournament has been staged in Africa, the previous one was in 2007 when Cape Town in South Africa was the host and the ITTF Cadet Challenge was organised alongside the ITTF Junior Circuit Finals.   The venue of this year’s championship is situated in the very south of the Sinai Peninsula, an increasing destination for tourists, the city of Sharm El-Sheikh will be the host for the forthcoming ITTF World Cadet Challenge; the overall itinerary will commence on Friday 23rd October and conclude on Saturday 31st October.   Proceedings will follow the now established pattern which was witnessed one year ago in the Caribbean island of Barbados, when Korea’s Hwang Minha and Japan’s Mima Ito brought events to a conclusion, by winning the respective Boys’ Singles and Girls’ Singles event.

Matters commence with a three day Training Camp led by an experienced coach nominated by the International Table Tennis Federation; a perfect way to ignite the flame.   “The Training Camp is an important component of the World Cadet Challenge”, explained Glenn Tepper, the ITTF Deputy Chief Executive Officer. “Every team trains at least once with every other team, educational sessions are held for coaches each evening, while attending coaches are empowered to take an active role in the training camp by the head coach.”   Next on the agenda are the Boys’ Team and Girls’ Team events.   Four boys and four girls in each team, eight outfits compete in each discipline. Each of the six member continents of the International Table Tennis Federation – Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America, North America, Oceania – is represented with a Hopes Team and a Host Team completing the line-up.   Whatever the final outcome, it is a most valuable educational experience, one that no classroom can offer, as young people from different backgrounds unite in a common cause.   “A maximum of one player per country is permitted so teams must learn to co-operate together, while learning each other’s culture and language”, added Glenn Tepper. “It creates a great life learning experience in addition to the obvious table tennis benefits.”   The Team events concluded, there is a one day break which enables all concerned to visit the local area; one could hardly do better than Sharm El-Sheikh, the region is steeped in history beyond the sands of time.   Unquestionably a memorable experience is afforded and again, with the whole group united, it is a most valuable educational experience in more ways than one.   The visit over, a good night’s sleep, it is a return to the playing arena for three days of competition in the individual events – Boys’ Singles, Girls’ Singles, Boys’ Doubles, Girls’ Doubles.   For Egypt to stage this tournament appreciation must go to Dr Alaa Meshref, President of the Egyptian Table Tennis Federation and Khaled El-Salhy, President of the African Table Tennis Federation.   Also it returns in style; all involved will be accommodated at the Sheraton Sharm Hotel, Resort, Villas & Spa , a superbly situated four star hotel overlooking the Red Sea,   An experience, educational and sporting awaits in Sharm El-Sheikh.

Culled from ITTF.com