"We are continuing to see benefits from the forthcoming changes to the format of the World Championships Finals, which will be introduced from next year onwards, leading to more countries bidding from different regions of the world," said ITTF Deputy President Khalil Al-Mohannadi.
Despite losing a place to Bottas at the start, Verstappen was happy to finish second. "To be able to split the Mercedes cars, we can be pleased with that. I was just trying to do my own race. I'm very happy with second after two (retirements)."
Following reigning world champion Liu Shiwen's withdrawal due to an injury, her compatriot and current world No. 1 Chen Meng enters the action and expects a tough challenge from the closest rival Mima Ito from Japan.
Newly-crowned US Open champion Dominic Thiem extended his winning streak to nine matches as the 2018 and 2019 Roland Garros finalist saw off American qualifier Jack Sock 6-1, 6-3, 7-6 (6) in two hours and 22 minutes.
The scheduled dates for each prefecture in 2021 will be one day earlier than the originally scheduled dates in 2020 but the days of the week will match the previous schedule.
"It's an unfortunate incident, Mokua was heavily attacked by the hippo while on his training session on Monday evening. If it wasn't for his training partner who rushed to his rescue, it could have been a different story," athletics coach Francis Kamau told Xinhua on Tuesday.
Like Bayern, Borussia Dortmund might also feel comfortable, drawing Lazio, Club Brugge, and Zenit St. Petersburg in Group F.
Ten minutes before the final whistle, Chris Shimbayev fired home after a long run to give Suzhou the three points.
The game was played behind closed doors at the Menorah Mivtachim Arena in the coastal city of Tel Aviv.
Roberto Soldado will probably replace Jorge Molina in the Granada starting 11 on Thursday, while the Darwin Machis will also probably start with Antonio Puertas perhaps dropping to the bench for the Chinese owned club.
The new format for the World Table Tennis Championships Finals will come into place in 2021, requiring participants to contend for berths through continental qualifications, thus making it more feasible for more countries and regions to host the event.