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The young Frenchwoman Prithika Pavade at the service during the Olympic ping pong tournament in Tokyo, August 2, 2021

The young French Pavade Prithika focused on her match in the Olympic tournament of the Tokyo Games, August 2, 2021

Unqualified for the Worlds in Houston, which begins on Tuesday, the great hope of French table tennis Prithika Pavade, 17, consoles himself with other goals to confirm a rich year, marked by an unexpected Olympic baptism in Tokyo.

The nugget of Insep and the Saint-Denis club, announced as one of the blue ping pong medal chances at the Paris 2024 Games, will not see Texas. The fault of the regulations amended by the international federation.

Due to the cancellation of many tournaments counting for the qualification, only the world ranking is taken into account. Pavade, 376th at the time of the scoring (326th currently), was not in the right car for global competition in the United States.

“The French Federation (FFTT) tried to get a wild-card (invitation) but it did not work. If the ITTF (international federation) had made an exception for me, it would have been necessary to do it also for several young players “, explains the person concerned to AFP.

The FFTT deplored a “strict” regulation which required its nugget to obtain “a minimum world ranking” not yet reached “because of its youth” and competitions “postponed or canceled because of the Covid”.

This situation is all the more frustrating as the European bronze medalist in team and mixed doubles offered several performances against opponents much better classified than herself.

Most recent: at the end of October in Tunis where she dismissed (3-0) the Egyptian Dina Meshref, 36th in the world, to reach the quarter-finals of a professional circuit tournament.

In Cluj (Romania), during the European Team Championships, finished in third place for the Blue, Pavade even offered the scalp of the European No.1, the Austrian Sofia Polcanova (16th in the world).

“It had been more than fifty years (since 1962) since there had been a medal for the girls! For half of the group, it was the first team championships. So it’s nice and it’s very encouraging for the future “, appreciates Pavade, relativizing his absence at the Worlds.

“There is disappointment because it’s an incredible competition that I really wanted to discover. But we will continue to work to improve my ranking,” she confides.

His career in Tunisia allowed him to climb twelve places. “It is quite urgent to go up, but I tell myself that if I continue to perform, there is no reason that it does not work”, underlines Pavade.

The native of Villepinte, in Seine-Saint-Denis, therefore hopes to continue in this direction even if the tournament in Lasko, in Slovenia, did not smile on her as much as in Tunisia. After qualifying, which was won with a hard fight, Pavade came across a serious client of entry, the Chinese Yidi Wang (10th in the world), and lost without registering a single round (3-0).

But other goals will arrive quickly, such as the Junior Worlds (December 2-8) in Portugal, where she hopes to shine, especially in the individual event. “During the last edition (2019), I won a (bronze, editor’s note) double medal with Camille Lutz but I never played very well in singles”, says Pavade.

The young French Pavade Prithika focused on her match in the Olympic tournament of the Tokyo Games, August 2, 2021 / AFP / Archives

“It will be nice to find girls of my age. If I manage to put good intentions, I can achieve something”, continues the French nugget, which will continue with the Senior French Championships (December 17-19) in Cesson-Sévigné.

Another opportunity to shine at the end of a busy 2021 year – despite her forced absence from the Worlds – and unforgettable with the qualification for the Olympics, even if she did not pass the first round in Japan.

“I would have liked to come back with one or two wins, but I didn’t necessarily miss it. It’s still very rewarding,” she concludes.

The Chinese tennis star appeared at a tennis tournament in Beijing on Sunday, Nov.21, according to

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Related title :
On the road to the Games: Pavade chases the frustration of the Worlds
Table tennis: Prithika Pavade chases the frustration of the Worlds

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