The Mark Bates Ltd Senior National Championships have been cancelled but Table Tennis England continues to discuss hosting an alternative event later in 2021.

The championships was scheduled to take place from 29-31 January 2021, to include the designated weekend window for national championships across Europe.

However, after detailed analysis of various formats and taking into account all the possible coronavirus restrictions, it has been decided to cancel the event.

The decision has been made with the full support of Mark Bates Ltd, the event sponsors.

Table Tennis England Chief Executive Sara Sutcliffe said: “We had hoped to be able to stage some kind of event on the dates set aside for the Nationals.

“This would have had to take place without spectators and in a very controlled environment in which the wellbeing of players, coaches, officials and workforce was paramount, and could have been broadcast live to give our members some table tennis to enjoy.

“A working group looked into various formats based on ‘bubbles’ of players, as well as considering venue suitability, workforce needs and broadcast options.

“Unfortunately, the ongoing uncertainty over which tiers various locations will be in, and how the restrictions will affect competitions, meant it was impossible to come up with a viable and cost-effective option.

“It remains to be seen, as the situation returns towards normal and the competition calendar resumes, whether we are able to host some kind of Senior Nationals event later in the season,

subject to coronavirus restrictions and player availability.”

The date of the Nationals was moved from its traditional date at the end of February or start of March because the 2020 World Championships have been rescheduled in South Korea at the start of March 2021.

Discussions are ongoing between Table Tennis England and British Para Table Tennis concerning options for the Para 3-5 and Para 6-10 classes which would ordinarily form part of the Senior Nationals.

The other Mark Bates Ltd National Championships remain on the calendar and subject to the stop/go decision dates as set out in our competition and refund policy.

The Cadet & Junior Nationals are due to take place on 8-9 May, with a decision date of 15 February; the U10-U13 Nationals are due to take place on 12-13 June, with a decision date of 22 March.

If either or both events are unable to take place in their standard formats, then alternatives will be considered.