GB table tennis' Darius Knight moves abroad before Games

European Table Tennis Championships

Venue:
Ergo Arena, Gdansk, Poland
Date:
8-16 October
Coverage:
Reports on bbc.co.uk/sport and updates from Olympic sport reporter Jessica Creighton on Twitter - @Jess_BBCSport
darius knight
Knight won a men's double gold medal at the 2006 Youth Olympic games

Table tennis player Darius Knight has chosen to move to Austria due to a lack of funding in the sport in Britain.

British Table Tennis receives the lowest amount of funding of all the summer Olympic sports at £1.2m, after having it slashed in 2009.

"In Austria, life is not as expensive and the table tennis is much better," Knight, 21, told BBC Sport.

"With our funding problem there's not much here [in England] for me, the move can only be positive."

Ranked 261st in the world, Knight's best chance of reaching London 2012 is via one of three host nation places given out by British selectors to make up the male squad.

The Londoner's competition results and performances in training will all be taken into consideration, which he hopes a move abroad will improve.

"Two of my team-mates Liam Pitchford and Paul Drinkhall are living abroad so if I want to compete with them for Olympic places I have to move too. It shows selectors I'm thinking about my future and I'm serious about my sport," Knight said.

"Different routines, coaches and ideas - I think I need that change if I want to be a top player and represent my country in 2012."

After the disappointment of Beijing, British Table Tennis had their Olympic funding slashed by half to £1.2m, making it increasingly difficult to fund the support staff required and send players to foreign training camps.

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Darius Knight is a table tennis player for Great Britain. He competes for Great Britain on the ITTF World Pro Tour and is a three-time national under-21 champion.

Ten months out from the Games, results for the British contingent have become a concern as players struggle to reach the latter stages of senior international tournaments.

With the European Championships on the horizon (8-16 October), Knight knows a solid performance in the tournament, will put him in prime position for selection.

"I will concentrate on two or three things I know I am good at. At this level, what wins you matches is your strong points."

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