February 17, 2017

St. Andrews Invades MDTTC!!!
Yesterday afternoon, for 75 minutes, MDTTC was invaded by hordes of small creatures, students ages 8-10 from the nearby St. Andrews School - 75 of them to be exact. I ran a demonstration and exhibition, assisted by fellow MDTTC coaches Wang Qing Liang ("Leon") and John Hsu. After giving a short introduction to the sport, Coach Wang and I demonstrated the various techniques - forehands, backhands, looping, footwork, and serves. The serving demo always is a big hit as I use backspin to make the ball bounce back into the net, then directly bounce back over the net (made it on the first try), and then sidespin to make the ball curve and hit a target off to the side.

Then I went into my, "A very bad thing happened today" routine, and explained how Coach Wang told me that he believes he can beat me (!) in table tennis. And so we had it out, one game to 11, with the loser to sweep and mop the entire club. We did lots of fast counter-hitting, lobbing, smashing lobs while on my knees, blowing the ball, big racket vs. small racket, 50-foot serve from the side, the world's "first" table tennis wave (for about the 500th time). It all ended with me lobbing four of Wang's smashes back while rolling about on the ground before he finally smacked one past me to win, 11-9. (I always play the "bad guy" in these exhibitions, and always lose.)

Then I explained how to play "Master of the Table" (commonly called "King of the Table," except that's not fair to the girls). One player is "Master" and the others line up, taking turns, until one of them scores, and then that player becomes the "Master." (The more advanced version is you have to win two points to become the Master, but for this level winning one point is more fun.) Then they fanned out and played this on 16 tables for about 45 minutes. We had great fun, and hope to get a few new players out of this.

$2700 MDTTC Butterfly February Open
Last chance to enter - deadline is 7PM tonight! I'm running the 3-star tournament on Sat and Sun.

USATT Veterans and Resource Development Committees
These are newly formed USATT Committees. Are you interested in being on one of these committee, perhaps even chairing it? If so, email me. It's timely - we're actually supposed to send in our recommendions for committee chairs by 5PM Saturday. We're also getting new chairs for the Ethics and Grievance Committee (two people have already applied), the Coaching Committee (one person has already applied - not me), the Tournament Committee (Larry Rose is term limited out), and the League Commttee (I did my two years). We also will be getting a new chair for the Compensation Committee, but that person must be a current member of the USATT Board. All USATT Committee Chairs have to be approved every two years, but the rest of the committees have current chairs who wish to continue - but you can apply to replace any of them. Here are the two new committees:

  • The Veterans Committee would deal with senior issues. (I originally wanted to call it the Senior Committee, which is what a previous version of this committee was called, but was told USATT is matching the ITTF and World Veterans by using the name Veterans for senior issues, and I went along with it.) There's been a growing need for this committee, with the All-America Over-40 Table Tennis Tours and the 2018 World Veterans Games in the U.S. (Las Vegas in July). Last year when I was looking into having copies of USATT Insider printed and mailed to elderly members without an Internet connection, there was no one to turn the idea over to. I sent emails to three prospective chairs, but none were interested or had anyone to recommend. 
  • The Resource Development Committee would focus on marketing and fundraising. I wanted to call it the "Marketing and Fundraising Committee," since that's what they would do and what a previous version of this committee was called, but was told that these days companies call this a "Resource Development Committee" - which does Marketing and Fundraising. I agreed, but still find it strange to intentionally obfuscate by not calling a committee in charge of Marketing and Fundraising the "Marketing and Fundraising Committee." Doesn't "Resource Development" pretty much describe any committee? Let's see, the Coaching Committee develops our coaching resources (coaches); the Junior Committee develops our junior resources (juniors); the Umpires and Referees Committee develops our umpires and referees; and so on through the Tournament Committee, Club Committee, etc., etc. But I'm not going to fight city hall on what to name this committee since I was assured by half the board that "Resource Development" is the standard term for this. Okay, I'm sort of making fun of this, but I do find it rather funny. We live in a world where you drive on a parkway and park on a driveway, so I can live with this.

History of U.S. Table Tennis, Volume 19
Volume 19 of this series is available! Once again USATT Historian and Hall of Famer Tim Boggan has brought out another of these mammoth volumes. It covers 1991-92, with 483 pages (8.5x11 pages) and over 1800 graphics. Cost is $40, which is personally autographed by Tim. Buy the whole series - all 19 of them! - and it's $30 each. As I'm quoted on the web page, "How can any serious player not buy these books?" (Disclaimer: I do the page layouts and photo work, with much help from Mal Anderson, who scans the photos and takes about half the pictures.)

How to Get More Power on Your Forehand
Here's the new article and podcast (9:30) from Expert Table Tennis. (Here's a related Tip of the Week I wrote, "Easy Power.")

USATT Insider
Here's the current issue.

Pong Talk With the Stars: Interview with Angela Guan
Here's the interview by Rahul Acharya.

Kanak Jha with His Team in Sweden
Here's the picture.

Training for the Worlds

Xu Chenhao Highlights (Chinese Trials 2017)
Here's the video (8:10) of this rising Chinese star.

German Women Physical and Table Training
Here's the video (52 sec).

What to Look at While Betting on Table Tennis?
Here's the article, which gives eight things to look at.

Darth Vader vs. the Martian
Here's the cartoon!

Minions Playing Pong
Here's a page devoted to the Minions playing table tennis, with four videos. The latter two I've never linked to before.

Photoshopping the Pros!
Here's the video (27 sec) - Ma Long as a cowboy? Zhang Jike as a fire-breather? Or as a Prima Ballerina? Ding Ning as a sword fighter?

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