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Table Tennis Review Technology (TTR) is amazing

This is the first time in table tennis history, ITTF used the “Hawk-Eye” technology in an international competition.

This will be great news for many players! And also important news for players around the world!

If you are relying on “tricky serve”, or “illegal serve”, watch out! This could be a game-changer!

TTR Hawk-Eye Technology in Table Tennis

Hawk-Eye technology, or also called “Table Tennis Review” TTR by ITTF, is first implemented in December 2019.

TTR is developed by RigourTech Technology Company.

For the first time in an ITTF tournament, athletes can review referees’ decisions with the help of review technology. Table Tennis Review (TTR) technology is similar to the Hawk-Eye technology in tennis and a number of other sports.

TTR technology is applied at the 2019 World Tour Grand Final, held from 12-15 December in Zhengzhou, China.

Table Tennis Review Hawk Eye Technology in 2019
Table Tennis Review Hawk-Eye Technology (or TTR) in 2019

Why use TTR Hawk-Eye?

The ITTF is constantly improving and modernizing table tennis and TTR Hawk-Eye technology will bring about positive changes

Hawk-Eye will provide a database that helps to solve uncertain cases, leading to decisions, possible inaccuracies of arbitration or controversial decisions

If the player has doubts about the referee’s decision, then they can challenge the Hawk-Eye system.

If we are able to reduce the human error or uncertainty, which can naturally occur in all sports, through a fair, transparent and effective system, we believe this will benefit the players, fans, and officials themselves, as has been achieved in a number of sports already.” – Vicky Eleftheriade, ITTF Competition Director

This new technology will help the referees to make a decision and give an accurate score.

TTR Hawk Eye introduced by ITTF in November 2019

What is TTR Hawk-Eye?

TTR is the ball trajectory tracking system, and camera review technology, developed by RigourTech Technology Company.

With the help of high-precision ball trajectory tracking technology, it is possible to replay the moment when a complaint is needed immediately and be reviewed by a match supervisor/ umpire who has the authority to change the decision.

Initial identification based on video evidence.

Edge ball is confimed by TTR Hawk Eye - Succesful

ITTF chose RigourTech after the bidding process in August 2019 and successfully tested for 3 days backstage at Men’s World Cup 2019.

Hawk-Eye in other Sports

The Hawk-Eye ball tracking and Reviewing systems are not new.

It has been used in many other sports such as cricket, tennis, football, badminton, hurling, rugby union, volleyball, to visually track the trajectory of the ball.

Ball tracking has been used in Tennis for a long time
Ball tracking has been used in Tennis for a long time

The video assistant referee (VAR) is used in football and is a great success.

FIFA officially approved the use of VAR for the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

VAR Video Assistance has helped umpire a lot during the controversy in football

VAR Video Assistance is used in football

So why not Table Tennis?

For me, it’s too late! We should apply this technology sooner!, said EmRatThich

In 2001, the technology was first used for Cricket.

In 2006, then it is used officially for the first time at a tennis tour event.

Hawk-Eye at Wimbledon
Hawk-Eye at Wimbledon (Photo by Daniel from Galashiels, United Kingdom)
Ball is out confirmed by Ball Tracking Technology
The ball is out confirmed by Ball Tracking Technology

And up to 2019, it is used officially in table tennis, during the 2019 World Tour Grand Final.

12 Ways to use TTR Hawk-Eye

The TTR technology is provided by ITTF so that the athletes have the right to review the referee’s decision that they think is incorrect. With high-precision technology, the time to appeal is immediately replayed and reviewed by a video slow-motion monitor who has the authority to change the original decision based on evidence.

There are 12 examples that you can use TTR technology to track the ball trajectories such as:

12 ways to use Hawk Eye in table tennis
12 ways to use Hawk-Eye in table tennis

During the serve:

  • hitting the net,
  • not vertical, tilt when launching,
  • covering, hiding the ball during the serve,
  • hiding hands under the table when tossing the ball,
  • toss the ball in the table surface,
  • the ball toss does not open and is high enough;
  • the ball touches a body part;
NOT EDGE Ball - The ball is OUT Confirmed by Hawk Eye
NOT EDGE Ball – The ball is OUT Confirmed by Hawk Eye


Service TOSS is not high enough - Confirmed by TTR
Service TOSS is not high enough – Confirmed by TTR


The ball touches the NET - NET BALL

During the rally:

  • The ball hits the edge of the table or edge of the table.

The throw angle of the service is not good 48 degree

How to use TTR?

What is the TTR Procedure? And how to use it if you are a table tennis player. ITTF has made some laws, regulations to use TTR.

  • Players are always informed about TTR technology before the match starts.
  • Players who need to appeal may request TTR technology by saying “TTR” or “Review”.
  • Claims to use TTR technology must be made as soon as possible, immediately after the referee announced the score and before the start of the next ball.
  • The TTR will only be specific for the reason of fault i.e. toss height.
Umpire call Review by drawing a rectangular gesture
Umpire calls Review by drawing a rectangular gesture

When did TTR is first used in table tennis?

TTR (Table tennis Hawk-eye system) was first used in test mode during the men’s World Cup 2019.

TTR will use ball-tracking technology to rapidly replay the rally on screen for review by a person with the authority to overrule the original line referee’s judgment based on evidence.

After winning a tender in August, RigourTech undertook three days of behind-the-scenes testing at the 2019 Men’s World Cup in Chengdu, China, from November 29 to December 1.

If full-scale implementation at the World Tour Grand Finals is successful, the ITTF plans to have TTR at larger tournaments in 2020.

The TTR system is not going to be used in all tournaments. It’s used only in some significant tournaments.

Who will decide after reviewing the TTR?

  • The umpire requests the TTR with a signal, indicating a square with the hands.
  • The TTR crew replays the point in question in the TTR monitor room.
  • The final decision appears on the TTR playback screen.
  • The referees confirm or change the decision accordingly.

How many reviews that a player have?

The athlete has two chances to request that the referees employ the TTR method. If a player requests a video replay erroneously and the referee rules against him, his number of attempts is limited to one.

Simultaneously, the ITTF is gathering feedback from players and coaches on how to best use the technology, and this rule may be amended in the future.

  • 1 athlete / 1 pair of athletes may only appeal a maximum 2 times in a match
  • 1 appeal will be deducted if the contestant’s complaint is not successful.

Is TTR applied in all tournaments?

TTR technology will be applied in some selected tournaments.

A player may only request TTR for the referee’s decisions that directly affect him or her regarding the fault or score. It is also important that a player can only request the use of the TTR system if the arbiter made a decision after his wrong action. At the moment, the opponent’s actions cannot be submitted for viewing.

A player cannot request TTR in case an umpire has not called a fault service for the opponent.


Table Tennis Review to be implemented at 2019 ITTF World Tour Grand Finals (ITTF)

Table tennis review explication by ITTF (TTR pdf).

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Table tennis coach in France since 2012, founder of pingsunday.com (the best online coaching program for table tennis players). Born in Vietnam in 1983, Ph.D. in Université Pierre Marie Curie. Read more about him.

5 thoughts on “Table Tennis Review Technology (TTR) is amazing”

  1. Coach I have question. I have flat feet and I don’t know which table tennis shoes to buy . Would you please help me.one more thing, would you please tell me if can wear flat foot insoles with a table tennis shoes. Thanks again for your help.

  2. A player cannot request TTR on a serve unless the umpire has already called a fault – so it can only be used to dispute when the umpire has already called a fault ?

    What a waste! The main problem of cheating in tabletennis is that umpires are never calling totally illegal hidden serves as foul. Let’s give the people receiving these serves a chance to help by giving them the option to challenge. Furthermore, I really think a player who in any match receives 3 TTR’d serves that show ball being hidden should result in immediate disqualification. I’m sick of people cheating with hidden serves.

    • exactly! You can call the TTR only if umpire said “fault”.
      So to deal with the hidden serves, you need to ask the umpire calling the “fault” first, and then if your opponent refuse, then you can ask “Review”!

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