DUBAI 2014 ITTF STAR AWARDS
Wednesday 7th January
Ding Ning Named Female Table Tennis Star of the Year
Currently listed at no.1 on the World Rankings, China’s Ding Ning won the Female Table Tennis Star of the Year Award at the Dubai 2014 ITTF Star Award Gala Dinner staged at the Armani Hotel in Dubai on the evening of Wednesday 7th January.
She gained 31 per cent of the public vote and 41 per cent of the votes from the panel.
Colleague Liu Shiwen alongside Singapore’s Feng Tianwei and Japan’s Kasumi Ishikawa were the other names on the short list.
However, the player to steal the show was Nigeria’s Quadri Aruna. He won not only the Male Table Tennis Star of the Year Award; in addition he secured the Table Tennis Star Point Award.
He received 29 per cent of the public vote and 27 per cent of the votes from the Expert Panel in the Male Table Tennis Star of the Year category. China’s Fan Zhendong and Xu Xin, alongside Portugal’s Marcos Freitas were the other nominees.
Meanwhile in the Star Point section, where there was only a public vote; the duel between Quadri Aruna and Zhang Jike secured 33.50 per
cent of the total vote; the exchange in the semi-final of the Men’s Singles event at the GAC Group 2014 ITTF World Tour China Open between Ma Long and compatriot Fan Zhendong finished in second place with 22.40 per cent of the votes.
A combination of public and panel votes for the Male and Female Star Players; in the remaining categories, as in the Star Point section, it was the public alone who decided.
Spain’s Alvaro Valera won the Male Para Table Tennis Star of the Year Award with the counterpart female accolade going to Croatia’s Sandra Paovic. Alvaro Valera polled 42 per cent of the votes, for Sandra Paovic it was even higher, she secured 47 per cent.
Also nominated in the Male Para Table Tennis Star was Germany’s Holger Nikelis and Tukey’s Nesim Turan; in the Female Para Table Tennis Star the two other short listed names were China’s Mao Jingdian and Australia’s Melissa Tapper.
Success in the arena; in a somewhat different guise there was success outside the court for Portugal’s Pedro Rufino and for Austria’s Liu Jia as a result of her conduct.
Pedro Rufino won the Star Coach Award, Liu Jia secured the Fair Play Award; the other nominations for the Star Coach Award were China’s Kong Linghui and Germany’s Volker Ziegler. Pedro Rufino gained 42 per cent of the votes.
The Dubai 2014 ITTF Star Awards Evening over, attention now turns to the World Team Cup; proceeding commence on Thursday 8th January.