April 22, 2019

Tip of the Week
No More Excuses - Develop World-Class Serves with TNT

Serving Seminar at Maryland Table Tennis Center
Here's the info flyer for the Serving Seminar I'll be running at MDTTC in two days (Gaithersburg, MD, USA), on Wednesday, April 24, 7-8:30PM - hope to see you there! 100% of all fees will be donated to the HW Global Junior Program at MDTTC. I'm dividing the seminar into two parts - third-ball serves (serves that set up attacks, which should be the majority of your serves) and trick serves (serves designed to win the point directly, if not overused - I'll demonstrate a number of these). There is, of course, overlap between the two, as I'll go over. We already have a bunch of people signed up - hope to see you there! I'll likely stay late to work with players.

2021 World Championships - in Houston, USA!!!
Yep, we won the bid this morning at the ITTF meetings in Budapest, 83-44 over Morocco. This will be for Singles and Doubles, as are the current 2019 World Championships - for roughly the last 20 years they've alternated each year between that and World Team Championships. This is the first regular World Championship ever held in the USA, though we've had others for Veterans, Juniors and various World Cups. (See listing below.)

Here is the USATT article, The World Table Tennis Championships is Coming to USA for the First Time in 2021!, by Matt Hetherington. Here's the ITTF article. Here is video of USA's Bid - the link should take you to the start of the roughly 15-minute bid. There were four presenters:

  • Dragomir Cioroslan, main presenter (Director of International Relations for the U.S. Olympic committee, a 1984 bronze medalists in weightlifting, and husband of former USATT President Sheri Cioroslan, then Sheri Pittman)
  • Janis Schmees Burke, CEO of the Harris Country Houston Sports Authority
  • Anne Cribbs, Chair of the USATT Board of Directors
  • Lily Zhang, USA Olympian and member of the U.S. Women's Team and four-time Women's Singles Champion

Here's an updated version of my listing of World Championship-type table tennis events that have been held (or will) in North America:

  • 2028 Summer Olympics, Los Angeles, USA
  • 2021 World Championships, Houston, USA
  • 2018 World Veterans Championships, Las Vegas, USA
  • 2017 Women’s World Cup, Markham, CAN
  • 2016 Women’s World Cup, Philadelphia, USA
  • 2007 World Junior Championships, Palo Alto, USA
  • 2000 World Veterans Championships, Vancouver, CAN
  • 1996 Summer Olympics, Atlanta, USA
  • 1995 World Team Cup, Atlanta, USA (discontinued event)
  • 1992 World Doubles Cup, Las Vegas, USA (discontinued event)
  • 1990 World Veterans Championships, Baltimore, USA

World Championships Coverage
Here's the ITTF home page for the event in Budapest, Hungary, April 21-28, with results, and lots and Lots and LOTS of news articles, video, and pictures. (For USA coverage, check the USATT News page daily.) Here are more World Championships links:

Stress Indicating Illusion - Sports Application?
Here's the picture. (Here's the non-Facebook version.) Under the picture, it says, "This image was created by a Japanese neurologist. If the image is still, you are calm, if the image moves a bit, stressed, and if it moves like a carousel, you are very stressed. Tell me how you are doing?" I tested it, and sure enough, if I clear my mind - as I would before playing a serious table tennis point - the image goes still. I think this could have a serious application in sports as a way for players to practice calming themselves before sports activities. (Alas, too much viewing hurts my eyes.)

How to Make the 2020 United States Olympic Table Tennis Team
Here's the USATT news item. I blogged about how I and others didn't like the initial plan, where up to 4 of 6 potential members of the U.S. Olympic Team could have been selected by committee. They've changed it now so that at most 2 of 6 will be selected that way, with the others making the team by their finish at the current Worlds (quarters or better, unlikely) or highest world ranking, Trials, and then committee selections.

World's Best Table Tennis Robot vs TableTennisDaily's Dan!
Here's the video (9:15) of the latest generation of robots that can actual play table tennis, not just throw balls at you for practice. This one not only rallies really, really well, but reads spin. I don't think the player gave him his best serve, so I'd like to test the robot out against world-class serves, or even my own, or see how it does against pushes or against a chopper. Here's discussion at the TableTennisDaily forum.

History of U.S. Table Tennis, Volume 23
Tim Boggan and I finished work on it on Wednesday. It's 491 pages with a record 1841 graphics, covering 1997-1999. The proof copy is already in the mail to Tim, which he should receive tomorrow (Tuesday). Assuming all is well, it'll go on sale this week! Info on buying it will be at Tim Boggan Table Tennis (which I maintain for him), along with info on buying any or all of the previous 22 volumes.

Happy Birthday to Jorgen Persson
The 1991 World Singles Champion and 4-time World Team Champion from Sweden turned 53 today!

Three Tips to Improve Mental Strength in Table Tennis
Here's the article by EmRatThich.

How to Beat Flat Hitters at Table Tennis
Here's the article by Ben Larcombe.

Right Footed?
Here's the article and video (13 sec) by Samson Dubina.

Table Tennis From the Heart
Here's the article by Eli Baraty.

The Real Value of Table Tennis
Here's the article by Coach Jon.

Zhangliang Emphasizes Benefits of Multiball Training
Here's the USATT article by Matt Hetherington and Larry Hodges (hey, that's me!).

Collegiate Articles by Matt Hetherington

WAB Club Feature: Folsom Table Tennis Club
Here's the article by Steve Hopkins.

Paddle Power: Employers Find Net Profits in Ping-Pong
Here's the article from the Philadelphia Enquirer.

Zhang Jike Practicing Backhand Loop at WTTC in Dortmund
Here's the video (53 sec).

Best of 2019: Marvelous Twelve
Here's the video (5:15).

Top Backhand Table Tennis Moments
Here's the video (4:37).

Timo Boll 2009 Wonder Rally at the Qatar Open
Here's the point (41 sec) against Mizutani of Japan.

Incredible Point
Here's the point (26 sec), including some incredible returns and changing hands!

Incredible Chopping and Lobbing Defense!
Here's the point (43 sec) - including two body-spinning chops!

How Good Is The Pongfinity Trick Shot Team?
Here are two videos (4:38 and 3:31).

Table Tennis Magic: LEON the Magician Live Footage!
Here's the video (6:35)!

Players Have Too Much Fun with Bunny Ears at the 2019 U.S. Collegiate Championships
Here's the video (34 sec)! They push a button to make the ears flop.

New Table Tennis Cartoons

Table Tennis is Fun and Good!
Here's the great and hilarious video (47 sec) of Izabel, the enthusiastic daughter of Jasna Rather, two-time U.S. Women's Singles Champion, 1988 Olympic Bronze Medalist in Women's Doubles, and current USATT Director of Para Programs.

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