April 14, 2022

For all table tennis and sports enthusiasts, the 6th of April was a big day! This day is marked as World Table Tennis Day (WTTD) but it’s also the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace. WTTD 2022 focused on using table tennis for peace-making and conflict resolutions. 

This year on WTTD, 2022 Papua New Guinea (PNG) Table Tennis Federation had a remarkable event: the opening of the China Table Tennis College Training Centre in PNG in partnership with the Butuka Academy. 

PNG Table Tennis Federation already had a table tennis training centre, but it was a limited space, whereas the current one offers more opportunities and is a 900m2 multi-purpose stadium. The new training centre was donated by the Chinese Government. 

We spoke to George Shao who is the president of PNG Table Tennis Federation and the initiator of this training centre. He said that in 2018, the China Table Tennis College Training Centre was established. Former Women’s Singles world champion Zhang Yining from China was invited to open the centre, and was also witnessed by Chinese President Xi Jinping and PNG Prime Minister Peter O’Neill. At that time the event was held at the Butuka Academy. 

The funding and sponsorship for the training centre comes from the business community and Papua New Guinea Olympic Committee (PNGOC) especially when it comes to attending continental games. The great thing is that the Butuka Academy provides a free venue for the PNG Table Tennis Federation to train at.

If you live in Port Moresby, come along for a game of table tennis at the new training centre at Butuka Academy. 

Here is their schedule:

  • Tuesday and Thursday afternoon: team training 
  • Monday, Wednesday, and Friday afternoon: school students training where the coaches will be giving table tennis support. 
  • Saturday afternoon: team training.

Thank you George Shao for making this happen! ITTF-Oceania is looking forward to seeing many upcoming events happen at the Butuka Academy. 

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