How to qualify for table tennis at Paris 2024. The Olympic qualification system explained

Table tennis made his Olympic debut at Seoul 1988 with a total of four medal events in men’s and women’s singles and doubles.

To Beijing 2008, a major change has been implemented with team events replacing doubles. The program remained the same until Tokyo 2020 when the new mixed doubles event was introduced.

The five medal-winning events of Tokyo 2020 will again be presented at Paris 2024. But before that, NOCs and athletes must secure their places for the Paris Games.

Find everything you need to know about the Paris 2024 table tennis qualification system below.

How many athletes will compete in table tennis at Paris 2024?

A total of 172 athletes (86 by gender) will participate in the table tennis competition at Paris 2024. 164 (82 by sex) of them qualify through Olympic quota places, while two (a by sex) of them qualify through universality places. France as host country will be secure six quota places (Three by gender).

Each NOC can qualify one maximum of six quota places (Three by gender) in the five events, while a maximum of two athletes per NOC can qualify for each of the men’s and women’s singles events.

The team events will allow each NOC to qualify a single team of three athletes per genderwhile the the mixed doubles event allows each NOC to qualify a team of two (a man and a woman).

Quota places are allocated to athletes by name for singles and mixed doubles events. For team events, the quota places are allocated to the NOC.

What is the table tennis qualification route for Paris 2024?

Here’s how athletes can qualify for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games table tennis competition.

Team qualifications

There are four ways that the NOCs obtain atquota place per team (three athletes per NOC):

1 – Continental qualifying rounds – six teams

Each ITTF Continental Federation will identify an existing event to act as a Continental Olympic Qualifying Event.

Highest ranked NOC in each Continental Qualification Event (for Africa, Asia, Europe and Oceania) will be awarded a quota place per teamwith the exception of the Pan America Continental Qualifying Event which will award two quota places per team.

2 – 2024 World Team Championships – Eight teams

The 2024 World Team Championships will take place from February 16-25, 2024 in Busan, the Republic of Korea.

The NOCs of the eight quarter-finalists will secure a team place for Paris 2024.

3 – World Ranking – One Team

The highest ranked NOC (not yet qualified) in the World Team Ranking published immediately after the World Table Tennis Team Championships 2024 Final (the March 2024 World Team Ranking) will earn a team quota place.

4 – Host country – One team

The host country, France, will earn a team quota place if they have not already qualified through the qualification pathway.

Mixed doubles qualification

They are four manners for NOCs to obtain a mixed doubles quota place:

1 – Continental Qualification Events – six pairs

Highest ranked NOC in each Continental Qualification Event (for Africa, Asia, Europe and Oceania) will be rewarded with a mixed doubles qualification placewith the exception of the Pan America Continental Qualifying Event which will award two mixed team spots.

2 – Qualification event in March or April 2024 – four pairs

Mixed doubles semi-finalists at a designated qualifying event in March or April 2024 get a place in mixed doubles.

Only eligible pairs (athletes from the same NOC) from NOCs not yet qualified may participate in this event, with a maximum of one pair per NOC.

3 – World Ranking – five pairs

The five highest ranked eligible pairs (not already qualified and from a different NOC than those already qualified) in the World Mixed Doubles Rankingstarting week 19 of 2024 (Tuesday, May 7, 2024), will get a place in mixed doubles.

4 – Host country – one pair

The host country is guaranteed a mixed doubles qualification spot, if they have not already qualified through the qualification pathway.

*For NOCs with a team quota place:

If a mixed doubles quota is accepted by an NOC that has already secured a team quota place, any athlete qualified in mixed doubles will be listed as team members.

For the mixed doubles duo to participate in the Olympic Games, any athlete qualified in the mixed doubles event must also be part of the team composition, provided the NOC has qualified a team.

Ito Mima (L) and Jun Mizutani (R) of Team Japan embrace after winning their mixed doubles gold medal match on day three of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium

Photo by 2021 Getty Images

Singles qualifying

There are four ways NOCs to obtain quotas for singles events.

1 – Team quota place – 32 athletes (out of 16 team quota places)

Each NOC with a qualified team through the team qualification pathway obtains two qualification places for the individual events.

The the two best athletes from each NOC with a team qualified for the World Ranking of week 25 in 2024 (Tuesday, June 18, 2024) will be listed as qualifiers for singles.

2 – Continental Qualification Event or World Singles Ranking – 22 athletes

As determined by each continent, 22 athletes will earn a quota place either through a Continental Qualifying Event or through the World Singles Ranking.

The number of singles quota places each Continental has is:

Africa: four quotas, Asia: six quotas, Europe: six quotas, Pan America: five quotas, Oceania: one quota.

3 – World Singles Ranking – up to 15 athletes

Up to 15 athletes will obtain a quota place via the World Singles Ranking Week 25 (Tuesday 18 June 2024), respecting the maximum quotas allowed by NOC and the aforementioned continental quota places.

*The maximum quota will be 15, depending on the number of quotas available after the distribution of the mixed doubles quota

4 – Universality Place – an athlete

A place of universality will be awarded to an eligible NOC.

For Universality Quota places, athletes must have appeared on any ITTF Ranking List from July 1, 2023 to June 23, 2024.

What is the format and schedule of the Paris 2024 table tennis competition?

Five medal-winning events will be contested at Paris 2024: gentlemen’s singles, simple feminine, men’s team, female team and mixed doubles. The knockout format will be applied from the preliminary rounds until the finals.

The Paris 2024 table tennis competition will take place from July 27 to August 10, 2024the first final taking place on Tuesday July 30.

The venue for the Paris 2024 table tennis competition is Paris South Arena #4an exhibition and congress center which will be a major hub for the 2024 Paris Games.

Chinese team players Chen Meng, Sun Yingsha and Wang Manyu pose with their medals during the medal ceremony after winning their women’s team gold medal table tennis match on day 13 of the Games Tokyo 2020 Olympics at Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium

Photo by 2021 Getty Images

Table tennis players to watch on the road to Paris 2024

Athletes from the People’s Republic of China have been the dominant force in the sport, winning 32 gold medals out of a possible 37 available in the history of Olympic table tennis. In total, they have racked up 60 medals since 1988, including 32 gold, 20 silver and eight bronze.

The men’s team, now led by my long (five-time Olympic gold medalist), Zhendong FAN (World No. 1) and WANG Chuqingand the women’s team, now led by CHEN-Meng (Olympic champion), SUN Yingsha (World No. 1) and WANG Manyu (world number 3) have each won the World Tag Team Championships 22 times.

The Chinese team has also won all the gold medals available at Tokyo 2020 except for the mixed doubles. They will once again be looking for a masterstroke at Paris 2024.

Japan have added new, younger athletes to their current squads, but the standard remains high. World No. 4 Harimoto Tomokazuwho defeated china Wang and Fan in the semi-finals of the 2022 World Team Championships, is a good example of the strength of the team. Japan also won the first Olympic mixed doubles gold medal at Tokyo 2020 and ITO Mima will again be one to watch for the next Games.

European players have also made waves in the sport. QIU Dang (Germany), Benedikt Duda (Germany), Truls Moregard (Sweden) and the Lebrun brothers (France) all have the ability to take center stage at Paris 2024

Athletes from traditional powers such as the Republic of Korea, Chinese Taipei and Hong Kong China will also be aiming for the podium in Paris.

Truls Moregard of Sweden serves to Fan Zhendong of China during the men’s singles final match of the 2021 ITTF World Table Tennis Championships

Photo by 2021 Getty Images

Timeline of table tennis qualifications for Paris 2024

  • To be determined: Continental qualifying event for teams and mixed doubles from Africa, Asia, Europe, Pan America, Oceania
  • February 16-25, 2024: World Team Table Tennis Championships, Busan, Korea (team qualifying event)
  • WTR immediately after WTTTC: Publication of the March World Team Ranking and selection of the WR team
  • To be determined in March – April 2024: Mixed Doubles World Qualification Event
  • May 7, 2024: Publication Mixed Double WR (Week 19) and selection Mixed Double WR
  • Week 19/2024 (May 6 – 12, 2024): Continental qualification events for singles on the five continents
  • June 18, 2024: Publication Singles WR (Week 25) and selection Singles WR
  • Within two days of each event: The ITTF confirms in writing to the NOCs the places obtained.
  • One week after each event: NOCs must confirm to the ITTF the use of allocated places.
  • Within five days of the previous step: The ITTF is reallocating all unused quota places.
  • Within two days of posting WR: The ITTF must confirm in writing to the NOCs the places obtained
  • One week after each event: NOCs must confirm to the ITTF the use of allocated quota places
  • Within five days of each previous step: The ITTF reallocates all unused quota places
  • Date to be determined: The Tripartite Commission will confirm in writing the allocation of Universality Places to NOCs (if applicable).
  • June 30, 2024: ITTF to reallocate unused quota places.
  • July 8, 2024: Deadline for sports registration Paris 2024
  • July 26 – August 11, 2024: Olympic Games Paris 2024

Find out more about the qualification system for the other sports that will be present at Paris 2024.

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