Battersea table tennis star and Commonwealth Games silver medallist Darius Knight has admitted his sports needs an overhaul and fresh investment.
After making his debut for the England senior side at just 14 and becoming European Under-15 and Youth Olympics champion, Knight made the podium at the 2010 Games in Delhi, although he admits that his career hasn’t quite delivered on that early success.
Knight, 27, now feels that he needs to concentrate on his own personal ventures at this point, away from Team GB.
Speaking at the launch of his new venture the Table Tennis League (TTL), Knight said: “The sport hasn’t updated itself in the last in 10, 15 years.
“You look at tennis, it’s an event, you look at rugby, it’s an event. Table tennis isn’t an event.
“I try to be positive but I think the sport needs a big shake-up or something like a businessman investing in it.”
Global sports charity Right To Play are set to receive 10% of profits from the league, and Knight believes his involvement with the charity has offered a fresh perspective on his career and himself.
The former British number two joined Right To Play in 2012 and visited one of the programme’s projects in Uganda in 2015.
The charity aims to change the lives of underprivileged children through sport, something Knight got to see first-hand in Uganda.
He said: “I’ve seen how the kids love to play, they just love it, so if it means I can do a better job for them, I’m doing a good job as a human being.
“They’re happy and I think in life we focus so much on money and success but that doesn’t bring happiness.”
The TTL will give multiple corporations the chance to compete against each other across the region, in a competitive yet fun atmosphere.
Organisations will be able to select from two packages, black and gold, which will give them a range table tennis gear to use in the weekly competition format.
Knight said: “There’s no catch, sign up the team, start competing, network, socialise, make the gap closer between old and young people, your staff will work better for you.”
After spending the early part of his life hitting the highs of his profession, Knight is entering a different phase of not only his career but his life.
A decorated athlete, Knight is looking to find personal gratification through growing his business, contributing to his charity and helping others who are less privileged in order to leave a permanent legacy.
“I want to be admired in a 100 years, a guy that’s changed something,” said Knight. “If I died, what would I want to be remembered as, a guy that’s given and was kind to people.”
To sign up to the league visit https://dariusknight.com/pages/ttl and for information on Right To Play visit
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