The 33rd World Table Tennis Championships opened in Calcutta, India on Wednesday (5 February) without Israel and South Africa.
GV Participants parading
SV Children wave banners
SV Chinese parading
SV President Ahmed watching
SV West German team
SV Egyptian team
SV Palestinian team and Panama following
SV Hongkong team parading
SV Indonesian team
GV Soviet team
SV U.A.E. team
SV Iran team
SV President Ahmed and officials
GV Stadium and teams
Initials BB/0050 RJ/JB/BB/0056
SPORT: TABLE TENNIS
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Background: The 33rd World Table Tennis Championships opened in Calcutta, India on Wednesday (5 February) without Israel and South Africa. The opening was controversial. As the participating teams paraded around the stadium, a coloured South African team was being turned back at the airport.
A spokesman for the West Bengal Government said the sending of the South African team was a shrewd move on the part of the Pretoria Government. The situation was embarrassing for India because the team members were of Indian origin.
The Indian Government had announced that for political reasons South African and Israeli players would not be given visas to compete in titles.
A team of Palestinians has been allowed to compete and the International Table Tennis Federation has now given them full membership.
The championships were officially opened by the Indian President, Mr. Fakhurrudin Ali Ahmed who made a short speech after the participating teams marched past. The opening ceremony took two hours.
The nations are vying for two trophies...the Swaythling Cup, held by Swede...and the Corbillion Cup held by South Korea.