Ping pong is going glam.
ESPN is set to televise two hours of the Hardbat Classic, a three-day table-tennis tournament being held at the Venetian Hotel in Las Vegas on June 26-28. Telecast will be delayed and shown in September.
Tourney is being pitched as not only sporting competition in which amateurs and pros will vie for $100,000 first-place prize, but a lifestyle event with branding viability.
“We saw a unique opportunity to create an unparalleled live sports and entertainment event that would inspire everyday players to rise from underground table tennis pros to mainstream sports stars as they compete while millions of fans watch,” said David Ellender, CEO of FremantleMedia Enterprises, one of the backers of the event.
Shingles Mark Gordon Company (“Grey’s Anatomy”) and @radical.media (“Iconoclasts”) are also supporting the tourney.