SINGAPORE —Table tennis player Koen Pang has become the first Singaporean to be ranked the world’s No. 1 Under 18 paddler.
This comes after the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) updated the current Under 18 world ranking list, the Singapore Table Tennis Association (STTA) said in a statement on Friday (30 August).
Koen, 17, said, “I am very happy that I am able to achieve this target. It's a milestone and I'm really grateful for the support given to me by Singapore Table Tennis Association, Sports SG, Singapore Sports Institute and Singapore Sports School. I hope this will spur the younger players to believe that with hard work and perseverance, all things are possible!’’
The left-hander is training under the Men’s Team, Head Coach, Gao Ning, who said, “I am so proud of Koen’s achievement. Koen has worked very hard for it and he truly deserve this new accomplishment.”
Koen has scored a string of victories in the past few years including three titles – singles, men’s doubles, mixed doubles – at this year’s National Table Tennis Grand Finale in January this year.
At the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia, he was the youngest member of the Singapore men’s table tennis team, and reached the men’s doubles semi-finals with Ethan Poh.
Koen also made it to the quarter-finals at the Youth Olympic Games in Argentina in October 2018, and clinched three golds and a silver at the South-east Asia Table Tennis Championships in Bali in November last year.