View Full Version : Breaking News! New Team Format for Tokyo 2020

02-09-2018, 09:33 AM
In the latest update on the Team World Cup 2018 page on February 9th, it is announced the former TBC system will be replaced by the new Olympic test playing system.

It's gonna be doubles first, followed by 4 singles, and the order of play is fixed after the coin toss, and thus no more mix-and-matching and 5-min breaks before and after the doubles.

TBC system: Best of 5 matches (Olympic system, 4 singles and 1 doubles). A team shall consist of 3 players; each player shall compete in a maximum of 2 individual matches. The order of play shall be
1) A v X
2) B v Y
3) doubles C & A or B v Z & X or Y
4) B or A v Z
5) C v Y or X

New Olympic test playing system:

The Team World Cup in London will be played with the new Olympic test playing system. The playing order will be as following:

BC vs YZ (Doubles);
A vs X;
C vs Z;
A vs Y;
B vs X

There will be no break during the team match because all 5 matches will be fixed after the toss procedure. The team match consist of maximum 1 double and 4 single matches.

02-09-2018, 02:44 PM
I will miss the day when Rosskopf made a strategic error that led to Germany's defeat to Japan in the team SF.

02-09-2018, 02:47 PM
I will miss the day when Rosskopf made a strategic error that led to Germany's defeat to Japan in the team SF.

There was no error Japan that time were just better.

02-09-2018, 03:11 PM
Will the ABC team have advantage over XYZ team ?

02-11-2018, 06:35 PM
The most interesting part of the new format is the 1st singles match. Due to the fixed pairing of doubles in the new format, the 1st singles spot is now fixed for both teams, meaning the strongest player of each team is pitted against each other, 100% guaranteed. As the doubles is played first now, the case where a player plays in 2 consecutive matches is eliminated. The strategic value now rests on where teams place their 2nd and 3rd players. Either way, the ABC team will still enjoy a slight edge, as their 1st singles player will play again in the 4th match.

Under the old system, teams had some leeway to what spot(A/B, X/Y) they could assign their strongest players, depending on the coin toss. A team may want to avoid a certain player, often the 1st singles player of the opposing team, in order to focus on taking out the 2nd singles player and winning the doubles for a chance to win. Japan did exactly that in the team final at Rio Olympics, as revealed by Kurashima (http://mytabletennis.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=76171&PID=946847&title=2016-rio-olympic-games-aug-06-aug-17#946847).

Mizutani said the singles bronze medal gave him a confidence boost, and he came into the SF match knowing he could beat Boll despite the lopsided record. As confident as Kurashima was in Mizutani beating Boll, they still needed the doubles. That's also where Rosskopf made the mistake by focusing on the singles (http://mytabletennis.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=76171&PID=946190&title=2016-rio-olympic-games-aug-06-aug-17#946190) and forgoing the doubles. For the record, Germany lost in all doubles matches in the team event from R16 to SF. Bloody hell, Rosskopf was a doubles specialist! The only win they scored in the bronze medal match against South Korea was with the lineup as I suggested (http://mytabletennis.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=76171&PID=946095&title=2016-rio-olympic-games-aug-06-aug-17#946095)(which Rosskopf never used till then).

"I don't have a good track record against Boll. I think I'm 1-14 or 1-15 against him for my career," Mizutani said. "But I was confident I could beat him."

"If I beat him, I was sure the other two would take the momentum into the doubles -- and they did. I could see (Boll's) hand shaking. I felt pretty good about my chances from the first game."

Courtesy of Google Translate

"That was our third double defeat in a row here. The double is extremely important in the system. If you lose it like it is today at the score of 1: 1, you can hardly do anything else. On the other hand, if we somehow get two points, I'm sure I would have won the crucial game. But if and when it does not work, we need to refocus on the bronze match, "said Dimitrij Ovtcharov, who noted before the game:" Japan has a young troop that is hot and has a very good double , I would say that they are currently slightly favored."

02-12-2018, 12:46 AM
There was no error Japan that time were just better.

Indeed, boll definitely not in shape and dima choked during the whole tournament. Japan was fantastic in olympics, I think they would win even if boll and dima were in top form

02-16-2018, 07:08 AM
What your saying is in the team event of the Olympics the doubles match will be played first?

02-16-2018, 07:58 AM
Yes, for the time being, and the doubles pairing is fixed(BC v YZ). The 1st singles players, usually the strongest for both teams, will now meet in the 2nd match(A v X). The 3rd singles players will meet in the 3rd match(C v Z).

That is a significant change. Like I explained earlier, under the current system it's often the case in which the strongest players of both teams never meet and people unfamiliar with the strategic reasoning behind wonder why. The 3rd singles players will now play a minimum of 2 matches. The role of the 3rd player is now even more important than that of the 2nd player, that teams may field their 2nd strongest player as the 3rd player.

11-06-2019, 04:50 AM
For future reference.


6.2 Olympic Team Format Brief Report
Mr Tony Kiesenhofer submitted a written report on the outcome of the test made at the Team World Cup in London with the proposed new Olympic Team Format.
Mr Kiesenhofer as well as Mr Arne Madsen gave a positive feedback, highlighting the marketing benefits and improvements over the previous system. Generally,the new proposed Olympic Team format is satisfactory as it causes the best players of each team to play against each other.
The Olympic and Paralympic Commission decided to follow the recommendation made by the working group touse the proposed playing format during the next Olympic Games.
Zoran Primorac mentioned that the team playing in the position ABC would have a slight advantageover the one playing position XYZ, but he acknowledged that it’s hard to find a perfect system.

The OPC decided to follow the recommendation made by the working group and use the proposed playing system during the next Olympic Games.


6.2. Olympic Team Format working group results
A working group was established to study the format of play for the team event at the Olympic Games following the mandate of the OPC meeting in June.

Mr Tony Yue pointed that the ATTU was not informed of the ongoing work of the Working Group and that in the future he would appreciate an earlier communication of the matters being discussed, because receiving the information only at the meeting he is not in a position to share with the technical experts of Asia. The SG noticed the request of Mr Tony Yue.

After the work done by the working group, the following system was proposed:

Match 1: BC vs YZ
Match 2: A vs X
Match 3: C vs Z
Match 4: A vs Y
Match 5: B vs X

With the only open question on whether the number 1 of each team should be fixed (according to the WR) or should be let up to the decision of the coach. After some deliberations it was agreed that the decision should be let up to the decision of the coach.

The OPC approved to propose to the ITTF Executive Committee the use of the system above presented at the Team World Cup in London, and following the assessment of the outcome, to decide the format of play for the team events at Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games during the OPC meeting to be held in Halmstad.


6.2. Olympic Team Format working group update
§The Continental Representative –North America, also coordinator of the working group,gave an update on the work done, based on the update already sent to the group by e-mail.
§It was noted that if the OPC is satisfied with the format suggested, then the decision should be published very soon.
§On discussion several opinions were expressed with the following key points noted: top players playing the decisive matches can help improve the drama, considering changing from 5 games to 3 games for the individual matches, TV time -long range of time for a team match, marketing strategies instead of changing playing format that might affect players. The conclusion was that all these ideas need more time for thinking and research.
§The Working Group coordinator further noted that if for example not having best of 3games for individual matches at the WTTTC and then have it at the Games it’s very difficult for players and spectators to understand and it’s therefore best to maintain what we currently have and not experiment at the Games.
§The Director (Marketing & Commercial) noted that we need to wait and see if we get a new event also for the Olympic Games. If we get the mixed doubles,then we are maybe forced to decrease time from team events.
§On discussion it was further noted that the main question is how can we get exciting table tennis matches; Short, emotional team matches, with likely more upsets. And it’s not a must to have this system only for Tokyo 2020.
§It was further noted that we should think of changing in a way that matches can be shorter and have a consistent format that can work in most of our major events.
§The Director (Operations & Olympic Games)noted that a holistic approach should be taken after the decision for the mixed doubles is announced,but this work could also be combined with the work done on the qualification system working group. He recommended thus the same group to be appointed for this duty.
§The Director (Marketing & Commercial) highlighted that IOC seems to be pushing all sports to think more about the youth and also that viewing habits of people change from day to day and very fast, points on which we need to research more.
§On the discussion a concern was raised about receiving proper feedback from the athletes, and the ITTF President noted that the athletes are represented on the OPC, and the two representatives were encouraged to seek the opinion of athletes.
§The Athletes Commission Representative noted that they would go back and collect the opinion of athletes.


8.4 Olympic team format:
•Technical Delegate for Rio 2016 (Sports Manager for London 2012) proposed to review the Olympic team playing format after the Olympic Games in Rio as with the present system No.1 ranked players do not play against each other. It was suggested to collect statistics from past and at the upcoming Games for better evaluation of the system.

The OPC appointed a Working Group to review the Olympic Team format after the Rio 2016 Olympic Games and to propose to OPC the system for Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. The Working Group is composed by Richard Scruton (TD for Rio 2016), Graeme Ireland (ITTF Technical Commissioner), Tony Kiesenhofer (Continental President) and Raul Calin (Director of OOG).

11-06-2019, 04:55 AM
Just saw some footage of the world cup Japan vs England men's singles (ZEN-NOH) Pitch and Drinkhall did GREAT! As did NIWA and MASAHARU but England was just too Clutch for Japan leading in Victory. It's interesting on how the first player to win 3 games wins that match.