November 6, 2023

Tip of the Week
Three Keys to Fast Reacting.

2023 USA Table Tennis Election
It’s time for another USATT election! This is a “special” one, to take up a spot on the board that was recently vacated. There are five candidates running for one position. Balloting starts today (Monday) at 11AM Eastern Time. Here is the election info page.

I strongly urge you to vote for Dennis Taylor. Here is his Campaign Flyer, which gives you his background and why he’s running. I’ve known and worked with him for 25 years. He’s a former board member, chaired the High Performance Committee, was on or advisor to eleven committees, was USATT secretary and took minutes for over one hundred USATT board meetings, and was the pro bono USATT lawyer for 18 years. He helped me run the Eastern Open one year and was a student in my adult training sessions for years at MDTTC. He is a rock of integrity and will bring that, experience, and vision to our sport.

The others running are Alex Figueroa, Dr. Tuan Le, Ludovic Gombos, and Derek May. Some of them are fine candidates as well, but none stand out for me as Dennis. He has more USATT experience than the other four combined by several levels – and in my humble opinion, he’s been on the “right” side of issues throughout.

Make sure to vote and ask your TT friends to vote as well! In fact, why not post links to Dennis’s campaign flyer and print them out for your club?

Weekend Coaching, White House, and Halloween
I was mostly a “walk-around coach” this weekend, meaning I mostly walked around and coached the players. (In many sessions I feed multiball or act as a one-on-one practice partner/coach, with the players rotating to me.) As usual, the focus was on fundamentals. In this case, I was (as usual) harping on active feet, keeping corner shots to the corners (or wider), and consistency.

Last Tuesday was a wild day. I’ve toured (and gotten souvenir magnets!) just about every possible landmark and museum in DC. The one I hadn’t done was the White House itself, since they are somewhat hard to get, and have to be arranged by your local congressperson way in advance. I finally got on one on Halloween Day at 11AM. I had a great time, visiting such historic areas as the East, Green, Blue, Red, Vermeil, and China Rooms, the State Dining Hall, Library, the East Colonnade (where Obama ran with Bo – I stood right where Obama was in the picture), and others. Afterwards I spent a few hours visiting the Washington and Lincoln Memorials and browsing the Smithsonian American History and Natural History Museums. (I practically grew up in the latter.) Then I took the subway home and it was time for Halloween. Alas, every year my area has less kids and fewer trick-or-treaters. When I moved here in 2001, we had hordes of them; this time we had only four. I’m now stuck with about three big bags of varied candy, mostly chocolate. I don’t know how much longer I can stare them down, so I’ll have to find a place to give them away.

Pan Am Games
Here’s the ITTF page for the event, though it doesn’t seem to have results. Here’s the official Pan Am Games page, and here’s where they have table tennis results. Here are USATT news items on USA results:

=>Articles by Steve Hopkins/Butterfly

$500,000 WTT Champions Frankfurt 2023
Here’s the home page for the event held Oct. 29-Nov. 5 in Frankfurt, GER. Here are the men’s and women’s finals:

=>Articles by Steve Hopkins/Butterfly

2024 US Nationals to Be Held in Huntsville, Alabama
Here's the USATT News item. Dates are July 3-7. 

Powerful Backhand Flick Tutorial - Learn the Professional Way
Here’s the video (5:24) from Rational Table Tennis Analysis. This is an excellent video, very clearly showing both the topspin backhand “banana” flip and the flatter “pancake” flip. Note the part about taking the ball a bit on the side against heavy backspin.

Butterfly Training Tips

New from Tony’s Table Tennis
Here are some excellent drill videos.

New from Ti Long

New from PingSunday/EmRatThich

Drill to the Middle for Choppers
Here’s the video (1:46) from Angela Guan/PongSpace.

Major League Table Tennis
Keep up to date with them from:

New from Steve Hopkins/Butterfly
(See others under Pan Am Games and WTT Champions Frankfurt)

New from Jenson Van Emburgh

Ping Pong Serving Rules: The Definitive Guide
Here it is.

Incredible Point Between Frenchmen
Here’s the video (60 sec) of the point between Simon Gauzy (left, world #25) and 17-year-old Felix Lebrun (world #8).

Sebastian Anthony DeFrancesco (1953-2023)
Here’s the video (3:32) of the wheelchair star.

35 Losses / 1 Win – The Inspirational Tale of Uma
Here’s the article by Tom Lodziak.

New from ITTF

“I Want to Play with Long Pimples!”
Here’s the cartoon! (Here’s the non-Facebook version.)

“It’s Like Table Tennis Champion Playing Djokovic in the Wimbledon Final”
Here’s the cartoon – with a clever comeback!

Adam vs. India's Best Ever
Here’s the video (12:58) from Adam Bobrow, featuring Sharath Kamal Achanta!

New from Pongfinity

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