Table Tennis England’s Ready to Return covid-19 campaign has been shortlisted for a major award.

The campaign is on a shortlist of eight in the Best Covid 19 Response by a Sport category of the Sport Business Awards 2021.

The citation reads:

Table Tennis England was determined to support the people and organisations involved in table tennis to ensure it comes through the pandemic in as strong a position as possible and developed our ‘Ready to Return’ campaign.

We created a dedicated section of Return to Play guidance on the website, as well as a Play at Home section, which included user generated content on ways to keep active in the home.

We also created innovative solutions and offers to help keep people active and involved in the sport, including over 30 TT Kidz virtual after-school clubs, more than 60 webinars for clubs and coaches and Virtual England Youth Squad training sessions with 300+ sessions held for the England junior squads covering physical, mental, fitness and nutrition, with many sessions being led by England stars and Olympians/Paralympians.

As well as supporting the sport’s existing participants, we used the power and inclusive nature of table tennis to send out over 4,000 play at home packs to those impacted most by the pandemic, including those socially isolated and those from lower socio-economic groups.

Click here to read more about our work during the pandemic

In the same category, the ITTF Foundation is shortlisted for its #TableTennisUnited campaign which offered financial help and equipment donation to support people to get playing again, supporting 82 initiatives worldwide since its launch in June 2020.

The other organisations shortlisted are English Football League, LTA, Motorsport UK, Premiership Rugby, Swim England and Volleyball World.

Table Tennis England Head of Development and Volunteering, Greg Yarnall, said: “We are delighted to be selected as a finalist for the Sports Business Awards, for the Best Covid 19 Response by a Sport.

“When the pandemic hit nearly 18 months ago, our key objectives were to support the sport, ensuring it came through the pandemic in as strong a position as possible, and keeping players moving, by encouraging and facilitating people to stay active.

“It was inspiring to see the lengths people went to, to support their own table tennis communities throughout the pandemic and more recently getting involved in the Return to the Table campaign. We look forward to welcoming soon those who haven’t come back yet.”

The winners will be revealed at a ceremony at The Kia Oval cricket ground in London on Thursday November 18th.

In other categories, the ITTF Foundation is shortlisted in the Sports Diversity Award for its work to bring table tennis to and empower children, refugees, underprivileged families, patients of Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s and females.

It is also in contention for the Most Successful Sports Event Broadcast for World Table Tennis Day 2021, which was broadcast over a 24-hour online live stream, drawing special attention to gender equality with the FEMpowerment campaign.

Table Tennis England partners Jockey Club Services are shortlisted in the Best Professional Services in Sport category and also the Best Business Serving Sport category.