Paddler Izaac Quek wants home support at WTT S'pore Smash, Latest Others News - The New Paper

Paddler Izaac Quek wants home support at WTT S'pore Smash

Singapore’s Izaac Quek will get his chance to relive his “favourite memory” of 2023 when he returns to the Singapore Sports Hub for the World Table Tennis (WTT) Singapore Smash 2024 from March 7 to 14.

In a career milestone, the teenager had a brilliant run to the round of 16 in the last edition, first stunning India’s Commonwealth Games champion and world No. 52 Sharath Kamal Achanta, before beating Sweden’s 2019 World Championships silver medallist and 32nd-ranked Mattias Falck. He was eventually defeated by China’s world No. 3 Wang Chuqin.

Izaac, 17, and compatriots Koen Pang, Zeng Jian and Zhou Jingyi have been handed wildcards to the main draw of US$1.5 million (S$2 million) tournament, which will also feature some of the sport’s biggest stars like men’s and women’s singles world No. 1s Fan Zhendong and Sun Yingsha of China.

Ranked 55th in the world, Izaac is looking forward to playing in front of a home crown again. He said: “I was really happy with my performance last year and I am super excited to be playing Singapore Smash again next month.

“I hope as many Singaporeans can come out and cheer on all of the Team Singapore players, it means a lot to have that home support.”

Chinese pair Fan and Sun will be looking to defend their respective singles titles, with Fan targeting a Singapore Smash three-peat after winning the men’s crown in 2022 and 2023.

Table tennis fans will also be on the lookout for French teenager and world No.6 Felix Lebrun, who won the WTT Star Contender Goa in January, as well as German icon Timo Boll (No. 44), Brazil’s Hugo Calderano (No. 7), Japan’s Tomokazu Harimoto (No. 9) and Lin Yun-ju of Chinese Taipei (No. 8).

In the women’s field, Sun will be out to maintain her nine-match winning streak in Singapore, having clinched titles at the WTT Finals Women Nagoya in December and the WTT Star Contender Doha a month later.

She will face stiff competition from 2022 champion and Olympic gold medallist Chen Meng (No. 3), as well as four-time WTT Series winner Hina Hayata (No. 5) of Japan.

Emerging talent Miwa Harimoto, 15, will make her Singapore Smash debut alongside other names such as South Korea’s eighth-ranked Shin Yubin, Puerto Rico’s Adriana Diaz (No. 12) and Romania’s Bernadette Szocs (No. 13).

Qualifying rounds will be held at the OCBC Arena from Mar 7 to 9, with the main draw starting on Mar 10 and the finals contested on Mar 17.

WTT Singapore Smash tickets are available at with prices starting from $15 for general admission.