February 8, 2011

What Is Your Game?

I've always said that coaching is a partnership, and that the top expert on a player's game shouldn't be the coach; it should be the player himself. One of the jobs of a coach is to encourage the player to become such an expert. If a player can't write a book about his game, it means either he doesn't know his game, or he doesn't have a game. A beginner doesn't yet have a game, but once you've reached the intermediate stage, you do. So . . . what's your game? (Just a summary of the "book.")

Me? I'm an all-around player with a strong and varied serve & attack with forehand loops and smashes, but little backhand attack. Once past the serve & attack stage, I'm primarily a steady player who mostly blocks and counters on the backhand, and blocks, counters, loops, or smashes on the forehand. When in trouble, I chop or lob.  On the receive, I tend to topspin most serves back with flips off short balls, and forehand loops and backhand drives off deep serves. My strongest shots are my serve, forehand smash, steady forehand loop off backspin, steady backhand counter, and (surprisingly) forehand block against loops. My weakest shots are my backhand attack, tendency to play too soft in rallies, and (in recent years) my forehand counterloop, alas.

What's the Fastest Growing Sport in America?

Sandpaper Table Tennis??? There are now FOUR (4!!!) sandpaper table tennis associations in the U.S.:

  • ICPP: International Classic Ping Pong
  • USSTTA: United States Sandpaper Table Tennis Association
  • FASTT: Federal Association of Sandpaper Table Tennis
  • TTN: Table Tennis Nation

The ICPP is currently running a $100,000 tournament in Las Vegas, Feb. 7-8. The prize money, cut & pasted from their website, is:

  • 1: $41,000
  • 2: $7000
  • 3: $6000
  • 4: $4000
  • 5-16: $2625

Results are sketchy; for such a tournament, why don't they have results on their webpage??? From various forums, I've pieced together these results:


  • Will be played today at 12:45 PM (3:45 PM Eastern Time)


  • Ernesto Ebuen d. Tahl Leibovitz, 3-1;
  • Maxim Shmyrev (RUS) d.  Michel Martinez (FRA).


  • Michel Martinez (FRA) d. Kazuyuki Yokoyama, 2-0;
  • Maxim Shmyrev (RUS) d. Gustavo Tsuboi (BRA), 2-0;
  • Ernesto Ebuen d. Stefan Feth;
  • Tah Leibovitz d. William Henzell (AUS)

Earlier rounds

  • Kaz d. Mikael Appelgren (SWE);
  • Maxim Shmyrev (RUS) d. Trevor Runyan (USA), deuce in the third;
  • Ernesto Ebuen d. Paul Drinkhall;
  • Tahl Leibovitz d. Marcos Madrid, 2-1.

New Content

Here are three new articles in the Articles section. (All three were taken from blog entries.)


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