ITTF.com – An reported total of some 10,000 employees of the title sponsor, attended the concluding day of action, Sunday 6th March, at the Perfect 2016 World Team Championships in the Malaysian capital city of Kuala Lumpur.
Whatever, the exact number, there were few spare seats, the scene of hundreds clad in corporate coloured red or white shirts took the breath away, as they gave vocal support to their heroes and heroines.
In the afternoon session of play they cheered Liu Shiwen, Li Xiaoxia and Ding Ning to success in the Women’s Team Final, later in the evening they did the same for the Men’s Team trio of Xu Xin, Ma Long and Zhang Jike.
It was a quite remarkable feat of organisation from the Perfect company and one which enabled tremendous atmosphere to be created. It was an atmosphere that was captured by the major television companies who covered the event; especially CCTV-5.
Dedicated to Sport
Dedicated entirely to sport; CCTV-5 is part of the China Central Television family of networks and is the main sports broadcaster in the People’s Republic of China. CCTV-5 broadcasts sport 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
It is reported that 178,000,000 viewers watched the Perfect World Team Championships on CCTV-5. Furthermore, three of the fixtures enacted at the Perfect World Team Championships appear amongst the most views programmes transmitted by CCTV-5.
The Men’s Team final heads the list, followed immediately by the Women’s Team final; the Women’s quarter-final contest between China and the Netherlands appears fifth in the order.
Also you can add to the list the number who watched on itTV; the number grows even higher.
A splendid advertisement for table tennis on the concluding day with Malawati Stadium packed to the rafters; surely it was a splendid advertisement for the company.
Some 10,000 of employees wearing the shirts, banners, head gear with the company’s logo and name, on their feet cheering ecstatically was captured on CCTV-5.
A wise move by the Perfect Company, one which saw foresight; the result a tremendous atmosphere, major promotion for the company, everyone was a winner.
ITTF.com – The dust has settled, now the Perfect 2016 World Championships, which concluded in Kuala Lumpur on Sunday 6th March, are resigned to the archives of history; for three young people in particular it was an extremely busy time but one that will live clearly in their memory for many years to come.
Undoubtedly for Neha Aggarwal, Amy Ding and Robert Sticht, the three young people who received the ITTF Media Scholarships, a very special experience.
Neha Aggarwal, India international and a member of Team Asia at the 2005 ITTF Cadet Challenge, reports on eight days to remember.
Reflections on Media Internship: “Perfect” Eight Memorable Days
As I stepped inside the cab departing the Malawati Indoor Stadium for the final time, I took a moment to reminiscence the last eight days I spent on my first official work assignment. I took a deep breath and gushes of emotions ran inside my heart. Eight days of competition brought together 96 different countries and 670 athletes who played 2,102 matches, 7,997 games and 146,469 points!
That is the magnitude of the World Table Tennis Championship. I was yet to finish my final feature article of the day. Thus, as I began to write, my eyes were moist to know that from this very moment, the last eight days will become a life-long cherished memory.
The recipients of the prestigious ITTF Media Internship for the Perfect 2016 World Team Table Tennis Championship held at Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia from 28th February to 6th March were:
……….myself, a former Indian Olympian and currently a student of Sports Management at Columbia University, New York,
……….Amy Ding, a 23 year old postgraduate student at the University of International Relations in China and a reporter for the magazine Table Tennis World,
……….Robert Sticht, a student of sports management in Germany, who also worked at the press department for the famous German club Borussia Düsseldorf.
We worked together with the ITTF media team of Matt Pound (Promotion and Media Manager), Caifeng Yang (Marketing and Branding Coordinator), Ian Marshall (Publications Editor), Rémy Gros (ITTF Photographer), Matt Solt (Statistics), Adam Bobrow (commentary, voice overs and interviews) and video team of Joachim Davy and Christian Ortner.
It’s different experience when you enter the World Championship as an athlete and a completely different one when you are part of ITTF media: suddenly, my words, thoughts and ideas would reach the 1.3 million table tennis fans around the globe. My major responsibilities were running the ITTF Social Media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat) and writing featured articles for the website.
The four social media platforms require a different type of content, thus, every day I would be juggling between the main hall and the second hall to find interesting stories for the fans to enjoy.
A favourite part of the day was to interview the players and officials for my feature article. I had met and competed against all these elite athletes while I was playing for India but in Kuala Lumpur, I had the opportunity to talk to them in detail and know their stories first hand.
My most stirring moment was when I interviewed the players and coach of the Iranian Women’s Team who won the Third division. I learned about their breath taking struggles and sacrifices as women from a third world country tried to make their presence felt in their own nation and society.
It gave me jitters and a huge responsibility to let their voices heard globally via my article. I was also amazed to see how humble and fun the top Chinese and Japanese players are.
My posts on Snapchat, a platform I love because of its ability to engage with fans one to one, allowed me to tell completely different behind the scene entertaining stories of the tournament and be as creative as possible. Snapchat is the next big social platform and thus it was a huge opportunity as I was the sole contributor to those stories.
Amy Ding, who managed the Chinese Social media, rejoices, “It is really a great honour for me to experience my first World Table Tennis Championship as part of the ITTF media team.
During the eight days, I learned a lot. I was majorly responsible for Chinese social media. The most impressive memory for me is that I did my first on court translation before thousands of audiences. I was so nervous before the event but our teammates encouraged me all the time and gave me a lot of confidence.
Definitely, it’s their trust that gave me the courage to stand on court. Things go back to normal after #ITTFWorlds2016 but I do miss those days in KL and really appreciate for this life-long experience.”
Under Matt’s leadership we all thrived well as he encouraged us to incorporate our own ideas in our work. As Amy said, his support and encouragement helped us perform certain tasks we did for the first time that required courage and grit.
Matt gave me a beautiful opportunity to do my first ever on camera interview with the legend Jörgen Persson and a Facebook live interview with the bronze medal winning men’s team from England.
Robert Stitch, who became an expert in gaining flash quotes and tweeting, explains, “I was very happy to be part of the ITTF Media Team during the World Team Table Tennis Championships. I had interesting tasks. Sometimes it was not so easy to fulfil them because you couldn’t be in the main hall and the second hall at the same time.
There were also some problems with the venue and all was not easy for us but we had a great team spirit and all of us tried to do their best. I learned many new things and got to know how the ITTF worked.
It was impressive how big the Championships are with an immense global reach and is one of the biggest sport events in the world. We had the freedom to develop own ideas. That was fantastic. It was an honour and an incredible opportunity to work for the ITTF. I will never forget the atmosphere on the last day. It was an experience of a lifetime.”
It’s overwhelming to know that we contributed towards the event which smashed all social media and digital records. The ITTF Facebook page reached close to 34 million impressions, two million twitter impressions and Sina Weibo (Chinese version of Facebook and Twitter) reached close to 5.4 million views.
Experiencing the World Championships with the ITTF Family was an exciting yet challenging experience. Along with the team, we worked for 14-15 hours a day under tremendous pressure. There were times when we would make mistakes too, but Matt and Caifeng guided us well and helped us get better with each passing day.
We not only learned new skills but also learned the role and responsibility of media in such a magnificent global event. In the process, we made great friends in a matter of just eight days. My professors back at Columbia admired: “This internship is a great path for young professionals looking to get their foot in the sports business world. The diversity of the tasks offered gives students an all over learning experience in sports media.”
For Amy and Robert and I, this experience was one of the most memorable ones of our lives. We thank the ITTF for giving us such a wonderful opportunity, it not only helped us better understand our own strengths and abilities, but also brought us closer to the sport of Table Tennis we love so dearly.
ITTF.com – Play concluded on Sunday 6th March at the Perfect 2016 World Team Championships in the Malaysian capital city of Kuala Lumpur; for each national association that participated in the event there will be moments which are now indelibly printed in the memory. It was for China unmitigated success, with titles being retained and retained in an emphatic manner.
Notably, they secured both the Swaythling Cup and Corbillon Cup titles without a single individual match being surrendered; it was a quite awesome display. Simply they proved themselves a step ahead of the field
There were other feats note as England and Chinese Taipei excelled expectations to secure bronze medals in the respective Men’s and Women’s events; whilst in both disciplines there were silver medals for Japan.
Likewise there were halcyon days for India as they won both the Men’s and Women’s Second Division titles. The success is now written forever in the in history books of the Table Tennis Federation of India; also the tournament will be remembered for another specific reason.
It will go down in history as the most socially followed table tennis event of all time, with 48.5 million people reached through ITTF social media platforms.
Add the 190 million television viewers in China alone plus another 90 countries showing the event live on television, the entire world was talking about the 2016 Perfect World Team Table Tennis Championships!
Impressive figures; they reflect the global appeal of the sport of table tennis. It is athletic, entertaining and dramatic; qualities very much in evidence in Kuala Lumpur.