After winning the first title at stake during the Andalucia 2022 World Para Table Tennis Championships, Ukraine looks ready to capitalise on support from the sporting world to help the team reach this moment.
The ITTF and its Foundation, along with the IOC through its Ukraine Solidarity fund, supported Ukraine, contributing to the team’s participation in Granada. Table Tennis United, through the ITTF Foundation, has been helping the Ukrainian team as it navigates through the ongoing crises caused by the war in its country.
“I want to thank the International Olympic Committee and Mr. Sergii Bubka for their support to the Para table tennis players from Ukraine. This year, the ITTF has made its utmost to ensure all Ukrainian players can participate in table tennis, para table tennis and youth events. Seeing their success on the international stage inspires us all.” Petra Sörling, President of the ITTF.
Olympic champion Sergii Bubka, in his capacity as IOC Member in Ukraine, has been tasked by the IOC with coordinating all elements of the humanitarian assistance provided by the Olympic Movement to the Ukrainian Olympic community and sports movement.
To get to Granada, Ukrainian Para athletes had to qualify from two different qualification tournaments in Slovenia and the Czech Republic. The ITTF Foundation supported those athletes to get to those tournaments.
Organisers of the 2022 World Para Table Tennis Championships waived fees for the Ukrainian team, allowing two women and five men to attend.
Ukraine’s Lev Kats and Ivan Mai, in the final of men’s doubles class 18, won the country’s first gold at this year’s World Championships over Great Britain’s Josh Stacey and Ross Wilson (11-9, 11-4, 13-11). Now, the team’s journey continues in Granada through the end of the tournament.
Photographs by RFETM / Oscar J. Barroso