Para table tennis training camp held in New Zealand

The event, funded by the Agitos Foundation, the development arm of the International Paralympic Committee, took place in Auckland from 12-18 December. 06 Jan 2017
Participants of Para table tennis camp pose for the photo.

An ITTF-Oceania Para Training Camp funded by the Agitos Foundation´s 2016 Grant Support Programme (GSP) was held in Auckland, New Zealand.

By International Table Tennis Federation

The Agitos Foundation, the development arm of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC), funded an International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF)-Oceania Para Training Camp held in Auckland, New Zealand, from 12-18 December through the 2016 Grant Support Programme (GSP).

A total of 28 players from Australia, Fiji, Guam, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Samoa, Tonga and Tuvalu participated in the event, which consisted of a two-day PTT Level One Coaches course, a three-day training camp and the New Zealand Para Open Championships.

“Seven participants in the coaching course had a disability,” explained ITTF-Oceania Para Development Officer Christian Holtz.

“In fact, they are some of the very best Para table tennis players in Oceania. I have never experienced a camp like this before. All the players and coaches bonded like a family.”

After taking part in this camp, Fiji’s Iakoba Taberanibou departed Auckland highly motivated and more determined than ever to promote Para table tennis in his country.

“In Fiji, people with disability are often ashamed and afraid of being neglected,” he explained.

An increasing number of athletes are expected to compete at the Oceania Para Championships in 2017 and 2019, which is why the region is hoping to send larger delegations to the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games.

“Without the support of Agitos Foundation and the ITTF, this camp would be just an idea,” said Holtz.

“Similarly, the support provided by Table Tennis New Zealand (TTNZ) and the Manurewa Table Tennis Club was significant.

“Everyone made us feel welcome, from the TTNZ CEO John Lea, who spent two days getting to know the players, to the volunteers who cooked our meals and drove us back and forth to the venue.”

Thanks to the 2016 GSP, a total of 21 National Paralympic Committees, two International Organisations of Sports for the Disabled, one Regional Organisation and nine International Federations received a share of EUR 650,000 which had been made available to IPC members.

More information is available on the ITTF’s website.