Lily Zhang will hope to appear at her second Olympic Games ©Getty Images

Timothy Wang and Lily Zhang are among five Olympians who will be targeting a place in the United States’ Rio 2016 table tennis team after USA Table Tennis (USATT) announced 81 athletes will compete at their trials.

Zhang, who at 16 was the youngest table tennis player to compete at London 2012, will be hoping to build on her experience as she targets a place on the team for the second successive Olympic Games.

The 19-year-old was a member of the United States’ gold medal winning women’s team at last year's Pan American Games in Toronto, while she was also crowned as the national champion in 2014.

Zhang will begin as one of the favourites to secure one of three women’s places in the American team for the North American Olympic Trials, scheduled to take place in Ontario, Canada, during April.

Firstly, she will have to negotiate a 16-woman field at the trials, being held from February 4 to 6 at the Greensboro Coliseum Complex’s Special Events Center in North Carolina.

Timothy Wang will hope to claim one of three places on the men's team
Timothy Wang will hope to claim one of three places on the men's team ©Getty Images

Chen Wang, a quarter-finalist at Beijing 2008 and who was recently inducted into the USATT Hall of Fame, is also among the women’s field.

The trials have a new format with three-one day tournaments due to be held, with a male and female winner qualifying each day.

Three-time national champion Wang will be one of the headline acts in the men’s competition featuring 65 players.

The 24-year-old, eliminated in the first round at London 2012, will be joined by Mark Hazinski and Ilija Lupulesku, who competed at Athens 2004.

“The combination of the introduction of an exciting new format that makes every day a championship day and the depth and talent of the fields will make for a spectacular showcase of table tennis,” said USATT chief executive Gordon Kaye.

The men’s field also features 93-year-old Bill Guilfoil, competing as part of an optimistic bid to become the oldest Olympian of all time at Rio 2016.

The oldest ever Olympian is Sweden’s Oscar Swahn, who was 72 years, 281 days old when he competed in shooting Antwerp 1920.

As a member of USATT, Guilfoil is eligible to compete at the trials.

Meanwhile, Rachel Sung is the youngest participate in the trails, as she is due to compete at the age of 11.