T2 Asia-Pacific gets Mizutani boost
Singapore, February 27, 2017 – An array of world-class talent has pledged to play in the inaugural season of the T2 Asia-Pacific Table Tennis League (T2 APAC) which will commence June this year.
With women's world No. 5 Cheng I-Ching of Chinese Taipei, men's world No. 8 Belarus’ Vladimir Samsonov and men's world No. 13 and South Korean international, Joo Sae Hyuk already on board, the competition is expected to heat up even more now with the signing of Japanese international and men’s world No. 4, Jun Mizutani.
Mizutani, who won a record ninth All Japan Championship title last month, has recently risen to a career best fourth in the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) world rankings.
He is the youngest Japanese national champion, a feat he accomplished at the age of 17 while also making history by collecting a bronze medal last year in Rio de Janeiro - Japan’s first-ever Olympic singles table tennis medal along with the runners-up medal in the team event.
“We are delighted to have Mizutani on board T2 APAC. The Japanese No. 1 is undoubtedly a superb addition to the league and he will thrill and excite fans with his outstanding gameplay which has set him apart from many of his peers. He possesses great character both on and off the table, and we are excited at the prospect of working with him to reveal much more of the personality behind all that technical brilliance,” said Jeff Chue, chief executive and commissioner of T2 APAC.
Mizutani brings with him unique skillsets, and is an exceptional left-handed shakehand player who specializes in turning defense into attack. His inimitable flair has caught the eyes of table tennis followers and professional players alike, instantly making him a crowd favorite.
“We look forward to him taking on our other players under our unique T2 APAC game format and giving fans what they want – electrifying table tennis action!” added Jeff.
Other names who have committed to T2 APAC include Feng Tianwei (Singapore), Chen Chien-an (Chinese Taipei), Paul Drinkhall (England), Elizabeta Samara (Romania), Yang Haeun and Jeon Jihee (South Korea), Aleksandr Shibaev (Russia), Georgina Pota (Hungary), Matilda Ekholm (Sweden) and Suthasini Sawettabut (Thailand).
With all 228 matches staged in the T2 Cavern, T2 APAC will feature a ground-breaking competition format such as a player draft system (for the mixed-team championship), a 24-minute time limit per match, and a unique scoring system as part of an innovative model that has been assembled to engage a much broader audience and consumer base.
Touted as the richest competition in today’s professional table-tennis calendar, the players will be battling in separate but concurrent men’s, women’s, and mixed-team championships for an unprecedented prize purse of more than USD 1.5 million in the inaugural season. With 14 of the 24 players announced, only 10 slots (4 women’s and 6 men’s) in the inaugural T2 APAC player roster remain, and more players are expected to be announced in the coming weeks.
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About T2 Asia-Pacific Table Tennis League:
Headquartered in Singapore and with offices in Shanghai and Chicago, the first-ever pan-regional professional table-tennis league aims to introduce commercial innovation into the sport, and to captivate a much wider audience through a unique competition format, specially-produced multimedia coverage, and out-of-the-box articulation of storylines and personalities driven by season-long campaign of highly-stylised adaptive content. All 228 matches of the inaugural season will be held entirely in the T2 Cavern, a specially-designed and purpose-built arena open to a by-invite-only live studio audience.