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Self-Improvement & Hobbies

‘Faster, Higher, Stronger’ - Table tennis

Table tennis or ping pong may be made popular by the Chinese but few knew it was invented in another continent
CATS Classified In The Straits Times - August 19, 2010
By: Goh Mei Yi
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‘Faster, Higher, Stronger’ - Table tennis

Table tennis probably originated in Britain during the 1800s as an after-dinner activity played on the dining table. In the 1890s, several patents of the game were registered and the game was known as Gossima as well as Whiff-Whaff.

In 1901, Ping Pong was registered as a trademark by John Jaques & Son. The name “Ping Pong” could only be used when the game was played with equipment made by Jaques, while other manufacturers called their game table tennis.

The International Table Tennis Association (ITTF) was formed in 1926 and the term ping pong faded from use as more national associations affiliated to the ITTF were formed.

Table tennis was featured as an Olympic sport in 1998 with four event categories: men's singles, women's singles, men's doubles and women's doubles. At the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the doubles matches were replaced as a team event.

A table tennis match can be made up of any odd number of games, usually five or seven. In a five-game match, a player or team must win three games. The first player or team to score 11 points, and is at least two points ahead of the opponent, wins that game.

Players use a wooden racket, also known as a bat or paddle, to hit a ball. A sheet of sandwich rubber, followed by another layer of pimpled rubber, is glued onto the sides of the blade. The pimples may face inwards or outwards.

Table tennis regulations allow each side of the racket to have a different surface to provide various levels of spin or speed. To help players distinguish between the two surfaces, one side must be red while the other side is black.

Hollow celluloid balls measuring 40mm in diameter are used. The ball can be white or orange. The balls are graded on a three-star rating system. Three stars indicate the highest quality and are used in competitions. Zero- and one-star balls are usually used for training purposes.

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