Las Vegas Selected To Host Largest Table Tennis Tournament in the World 

May 5, 2015 (Colorado Springs, CO) – USA Table Tennis (USATT) announced today that Las Vegas, Nevada has been selected to host the 2018 World Veteran Table Tennis Championship. The largest table tennis tournament in the world, WVC2018 is expected to host up to 5,000 players (age 40 and over) representing over 70 countries from June 18 – June 24, 2018.



Swaythling Club Committee Members with representatives from the 2018 World Veteran Championships Bid Team 

USATT officials were notified of the decision at a meeting of the Swaythling Club International (SCI) in Suzhou, China last Wednesday as part of the ITTF 2015 QOROS World Championships. Las Vegas was selected from a very strong field of competitors which included Suwon (South Korea), Kobe (Japan) and Bordeaux (France).

 “All the submissions were very good; the level of presentation continues to be higher with each bid; look back ten or twenty years and compare, now we have totally new standards”, said Eberhard Schöler, the President of the SCI. “We were very impressed with the high level of detail in the Las Vegas presentation; everything was very good indeed.”

 The WVC2018 bid team included USATT CEO Gordon Kaye, USATT Board member Mike Babuin, ITTF Veterans Committee member Dean Johnson, three time World Champion Stellan Bengtsson, USATT Hall of Fame member David Sakai and USATT Hall of Fame member Dan Seemiller. The bid also included support from Caesars Entertainment, the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, and other well known supporters in the community.

 “It is an honor and privilege to be selected to host this prestigious event,” commented USATT Chief Executive Officer Gordon Kaye. “Speaking on behalf of the organizing committee, it has long been the dream of our committee members to bring a major veterans tournament to the United States, and we are thankful to Hans Westling, Eberhard Schöler and the WVC Committee for selecting Las Vegas as the site for the 2018 event. I am confident that, with the help of our partners, we will put on a world-class event for the organizers, participants, and guests.”

 First held in Gothenburg, Sweden in 1982, the World Veteran Championships has grown to be the biggest participatory table tennis tournament in the world. Held every two years, the 2014 event in Aukland, New Zealand “sold out” all 1,640 playing spots – and the 2016 event, which is to be held in Alicante/Elsche (Spain) is capable of hosting nearly 4,000 competitors. The WVC2018 Las Vegas bid anticipates over 5,000 participants, which would make it the largest in the prestigious tournament’s history (the previous high mark was Bremen, Germany in 2007, with 3,650 competitors).

 “This is a great win for our City and our facility,” added Julian Dugas, Director of Sports Marketing for the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority. “Las Vegas is known for big events, and in the world of table tennis, you can’t get any bigger than the World Veteran Championships. We are looking forward to putting on a great show in 2018.”

 To read the SCI/WVC Press Release, click here.

 USA Table Tennis is organized under the United States Olympic Committee as the National Governing Body for the sport of table tennis in the United States. As a member service organization it promotes table tennis by creating opportunities for athletes and coaches of all backgrounds to participate in the sport through more than 250 clubs and over 350 tournaments across the nation annually. USA Table Tennis is a member of the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF), and is responsible for selecting and training teams for international competition including the Pan American and Olympic Games.



I have just read Gordon Kaye’s (CEO of USATT) communication to the members of the Organization and he has extended a hand by reaching out to all who are willing to contribute in regards to initiatives and programs and who can offer input as to how we can better be served going forward by the organization.
I became inspired by this action and I immediately reflected on the words of the late, great Martin Luther King, Jr. who said:


The progress of our Association, our Sport and our Players have always mattered to me and this is why I am prompted and encouraged to hopefully lead the way for others to follow because I know for a fact that only when the SPORT succeeds do we all succeed.

Now let’s ask ourselves, “How can the Sport succeed?” We must take a long, hard look at other successful Associations around the world as an example… what do they have in common?! “What steps did they take in order to organize and develop to such perfection?”

By no means do I have all the answers and I know that many would conclude that we do have an organization capable of taking care of whatever is necessary; let them do the work. True to a point but as of this posting let’s harmonize and put the pieces of this picture into perspective. Of course we have a Board of Directors (BOD)… but they set policies they do not do the physical work. These policies are then forwarded to the CEO. Again, he or she does not do the physical work but would have to delegate responsibilities to many people to carry out these functions. PEOPLE! Therefore, is the key in order to accomplish the kind of Programs I am about to recommend. Presuming that the BOD approves of my recommendation I would be willing to detail how the following Programs could be established and how they would work.

We need responsible volunteers who care.
We need to operate like a business.
We need an: OUTREACH Program. We need to coordinate people into the system. This can be done by the Staff at Headquarters.
We need to establish Associations beginning in just a FEW States of course (affiliated and accountable to USATT) with delegated responsibilities.
We need an Organized League Structure.

This is the kind of movement that would create activity and publicity that would also help increase our membership base along with ideas from other sources.
I would like to encourage everyone to get involved and offer suggestions no matter how insignificant you may think it is. Every little bit helps and remember: “THE POWER OF THE PEOPLE IS FAR GREATER THAN THE PEOPLE IN POWER” Cory Booker.