Ultimate Table Tennis S4: Sarath, Monica Among Four Players Retained

Ten-time national champion Sharath has remained with the defending champion Chennai Lions, while Sathiyan will continue to be at the forefront for UTT season 3 runner-up Dabang Delhi TTC. 

Prior to the fourth season of the Ultimate Table Tennis (UTT) league, a total of four players had been kept by their respective franchises, including veterans Sharath Kamal and G Sathiyan.

The fab-four 

Sharath has remained with the Chennai Lions, while Sathiyan will remain at the Dabang Delhi TTC.

Asian Games bronze medalist Manav Thakkar will stay at U Mumba TT, while India's top female paddler Manika Batra is being kept by the Bengaluru Smashers with a retention transfer from her former team. 

Reaction from Sathiyan 

"This will be my fourth consecutive season for Dabang Delhi. The most unforgettable moment was certainly winning the championship point for Dabang Delhi in season 2. I am eagerly looking forward to playing for the Delhi family again and winning the UTT this year," Sathiyan said, as quoted by Sportstar.

A brief insight into the tournament

The Table Tennis Federation of India is in charge of the franchise-based league, which is encouraged by Niraj Bajaj and Vita Dani. There will be six teams competing in the 2023 season: the Bengaluru Smashers, Chennai Lions, Dabang Delhi TTC, Goa Challengers, Puneri Paltan Table Tennis, and U Mumba TT.

The focus now shifts to assembling a six-player squad during the player draft, which will take place in Mumbai next month. The UTT season 4 coach draft, which just ended, allowed franchises to select two coaches apiece.

A total of 40 participants will be available. Each team has the option to choose two male and two female foreigners, as well as two male and two female Indians, from the pool of participants. The venue of the tournament will be the Balewadi Sports Complex in Pune. The league will take place from July 13 to July 30, 2023.