The Continental Battle at the 2017 WTTC Qualifications

Day 2 of the 2017 World Table Tennis Championships has configured the main draws for all the competitions taking place: Men’s and Women’s Singles and Doubles and Mixed Doubles. A total of 665 matches were needed to select the players who will start –  in fact, have already started – the knockout phase.

With 128 players in each singles draw, only 45% of the the players who submitted an entry will participate in the final stage. In the doubles draws, the percentage increases slightly to 48%.

As usually happens in these rounds, many low-ranked and unranked players have the chance to play against top level competitors. It is also true that most of these players belong to remote countries and continental associations which cannot afford to regularly send their players to ITTF-sanctioned events. Therefore, their ranking position is not good enough to avoid the qualification stage.

How do the continents compare to each other on this matter? Which is the most represented one? How did they perform in the qualifying stage of this World Championships? We will find the answers to all these questions below.

The players

This map shows the number of players from each continent:


Europe and Asia outstrip the rest of the continents with more than two thirds of the players. However, it must be noted that seeded players are not counted in this matter, so the numbers would be even bigger for Europe and Asia if we considered them all. On the other hand, Oceania has only 10 players, which is also due the smaller number of countries belonging to it.

The results

Let’s see now how the players from each continent performed in their qualification matches.


Although Asia seems to dominate the world scene these days, most of their top players come from China, Japan or Korea. The majority of Asia’s less-developed countries competed with their whole team in the qualification stage, which might explain why South America ranks above them. Europe is not only the continent with the most participants but also the one with the highest winning rate.

At the other end of the standings, Oceania and Africa has the lowest winning percentage, significantly lower than North America.

The main draw

The knockout phase has already started and the winning rate will definitely change as the top players debut. For the third day of the competition, May 31st, we have:

  • Men’s Singles: Round 1
  • Women’s Singles: Rounds 1 & 2
  • Men’s Doubles: Round 2
  • Women’s Doubles: Round 2

All the main draw entries will compete in singles at least once today, half of the women will compete twice. Ma Long, Ding Ning, Petrissa Solja, Miu Hirano, Xu Xin,  Timo Boll, Fan Zhendong… so much to come.

Stay tuned to the action today at:

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* Cover photo: ITTF


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