ZIM to stream live table tennis events


TORONTO -- Canadian Internet broadcaster ZIM Corp. on Thursday unveiled plans to stream live professional table tennis matches for viewing online ahead of the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics.

Ottawa-based ZIM said it has a deal with the International Table Tennis Federation to stream live matches from 21 tournaments from 18 countries on the pro tour and the world junior tour this year.

The professional ping pong matches will be available to Internet surfers for free for the rest of 2007. Beginning in 2008, ZIM and the ITTF will offer pay-per-view streaming -- $4.99 for a single event or $19.99 for a subscription fee enabling access to about 10 events monthly.

Professional table tennis matches mostly air on Asian and European broadcast schedules. But ZIM anticipates ping pong being a marquee event at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, raising the sport's profile internationally.

"We expect this to be a true launch pad for the sport on a global scale," Michael Cowpland, president and CEO of ZIM Corp., said.