Rules of Table Tennis singles
What table tennis events are included in the Olympic Games and how do players qualify?
Find out here...
The Olympic Games table tennis events first started in 1988 - in Seoul, South Korea.
But did you know that in 2008, the table tennis events were changed?
The doubles events were replaced with team events and were a great success.
And in 2012, the maximum number of players per National Olympic Committee (NOC) who could take part in the singles events was reduced from three to two.
The total number of players is also set at 86 men and 86 women.
So, let's take a look at which events are now included in the table tennis programme, how players qualify, and the format of the various events...
Well, the table tennis competition currently consists of four events:
- Men's Singles
- Women's Singles
- Men's Teams
- Women's Teams
The team events replaced the doubles events in 2008.
The maximum number of players who can take part in the Olympic Games table tennis events are 86 men and 86 women - with not more than three men and three women from each National Olympic Committee (NOC).
Additionally, in 2012, the maximum number of players per NOC who could take part in the singles events was reduced from three to two.
Do all the best players take part?
The rules specify that each NOC can only have a maximum of three men and three women competing in the table tennis events.
Therefore some of the stronger nations like China have players who, despite being in the top 10 of the , cannot take part in the Olympic Games.
However, this means that the rivalry between the different nationalities is more intense, and provides excellent matches.
Which players do qualify?
There's a complicated system of qualification for the Olympic Games table tennis events, but without getting too bogged down with the full details, here's a brief summary...
For each of the singles events a maximum of 64 players, with not more than two players from the same NOC, can qualify.