Table Tennis England – Current State of Affairs

Table Tennis England

I was at Junior British League this weekend and I must say I’m very proud of my eBaTT – (Colebridgettc) boys team. We won the Boys Premier Division for the fourth time and currently our last time, due to personal retirement from the event. Personally, JBL is one of if not the best English, Junior event and it’s wonderful to see the best juniors in one playing hall.

Table Tennis Players in England
Table Tennis England

Junior Player’s

One of my players started playing and training for around 4 years and this season has beaten two different England no.1’s. He has climbed from around 50 in England, last season to currently no.6. Regardless of his achievements and amazing progression he has not been asked to train at EYS nor has he been recognised by TTE. Unfortunately, this is minor in the grand scheme of things, many know of the odd selections made recently (women Team) for the Common Wealth Games.

What has gone wrong since TTE?
  1. A New Governing body turned into a BUSINESS (spent millions into re-branding)
  2. Most of TTE’s staff don’t play or understand the sport!
  3. Many funding’s go to projects such as LOOP and PING
  4. Do the people who work for TTE care? Or is it just a job?
  5. Some are on very high wages and for what?
  6. Coaching: poor acknowledgements and systems to aid and develop our coaching structure. Many coaching roles handed to coaches without open applications
  7. Tournaments: poorly organised, VERY expensive, an overall poor structure which has not been modernised
  8. Clubs: limited support, and communication
  9. License: gone up but what do we get in return?
  10. Resourcing: Why are TTE not approaching high profile companies for sponsors? in aid of better tournaments, more prize money, club fundings, better communication channels, a professional SBL structure and payment, National team and squad players supported and funded

I don’t fully know and understand the in’s and out’s when it comes to ticking boxes (to gain funding). BUT, what I do know…

If a governing body does care this is what they would be doing:

  • Develop a good communication system with players, clubs, and coaches
  • Listen to the players, coaches and clubs
  • Find ways to change; recruit young (not necessary but often young people are open to change) passionate and caring people
  • Send the national coaches to clubs and tournaments
  • Find a sponsor for the national squad and its training, so players don’t have to pay for the privilege, regardless whether they can afford it or not
  • Support the best players with a fair system and STICK to it not giving certain individuals an open pass and others a locked system!
  • Develop a ranking system and criteria that is fair for all, for instance. If you play for England (international matches) you should NOT be getting ranking points for the national ranking system (it’s unfair and unjust).

Care, Love and Passion

I don’t have all the answers and I would never say I do but what I do have is a passion for my sport and I aim to provide the best service to table tennis and all players I work with. If I can do this as a one-man army then TTE should easily be able to provide a good service to its devoted players, coaches and clubs.

It seems like the best way to provide quality for our sport is by doing it yourself and with those around you.
I hope to see positive change and I want to see the players, clubs and coaches unite to grow our amazing and special sport – Table Tennis.

If you wish to learn more about Table Tennis England click this link TTE

Written by Eli Baraty

eBaTT (Eli Baraty Academy of Table Tennis)
Coach Me Table Tennis 
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