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PostPosted: 03 Dec 2011, 09:36 
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Well, folks, a reply from Adham Sharara in less than 12 hours - I think that's pretty impressive for the president of an international sporting body in response to a query from a nobody in the wilds of Tasmania. :up:

I have had to edit the email slightly, because the forum's setup doesn't let me format it the way my email does. However, the message is still the same. My email to the ITTF is in blue; the reply is in red; quotes from ooakforum are in purple.

Thank you for giving the ITTF the opportunity to clarify the plan to introduce non-celluloid balls.

Please find the answers to the questions in RED below each section.

Adham Sharara
ITTF

On 2/12/2011, at 7:06 AM, [Tassie52] wrote:

Dear Mr Sharara (and others copied into this email),

I subscribe to a very active table tennis forum - http://ooakforum.com/viewtopic.php?f=25&t=18031&p=197497#p197497 - where there is much speculation about the introduction of the new ball in 2013. I think ... it may be in the interests of the sport and of the ITTF to allay some of the fears people are expressing. With this in mind, I am attaching some comments and would love it if someone from the ITTF could offer a considered response, particularly in the area of changed playing characteristics of the new balls and their usability in TT robots.

Post 1:
Table tennis supplier Cole Ely posted the following on mytt:

Quote:
Emailed to suppliers from the ITTF:
 
1. The new POLY balls: 

The decision taken is that the new POLY balls will be officially used at ITTF events as of 1 July 2013. After this date the ITTF will NOT use celluloid balls, although they will remain legal for a while, until we officially decide the date to stop them (perhaps 2 years later). 

Moreover please be aware that for the period between the 2013 WTTC in Paris and July 2013, the new POLY balls may be used exceptionally, in the case of events starting at the end of June 2013 and/or ending in the beginning of July 2013.

Post 2:
When I interviewed Vladimir Samsonov in September he said he had not tested the new balls yet... I sure the Althletes Commission that he chairs was consulted on this decision and there was considerable support. I will ask him.

Mr. Samsonov was supplied with the samples, 3 different types, he tested the balls and asked several players to test the balls as well. Their report was provided to the manufacturers and they have made adjustments accordingly. The manufacturers provided new samples in November and the players, as well as other rubber manufacturers are now in the process of testing the new samples. The Athlete Commission Chairman is fully involved in the process. 


Post 3:
The ITTF does't care that this dubious ban creates hardship for 28 TT companies (729, Adidas, Artengo, Butterfly, Champion, Cornilleau, DHS, Donic, Double Fish, Dunlop, Gewo, Giant Dragon, Go Sport, Imperial, Joola, Killerspin, Nimatsu, Nittaku, Peace, Rucanor, Schildkrot, Stag, Stiga, Tibhar, TSP, Xiom, Yasaka and Yashima) who have produced 59 ITTF-approved *** balls. (http://www.ittf.com/stories/Pictures/Balls_04_2011.pdf)

They don't care that this new ball will make millions of balls worldwide pretty much worthless overnight, just like they did to us before a decade ago.

They don't care that this will likely render a large percentage of expensive table tennis robots obsolete.

They don't care that this will disrupt all of our games and likely force many of us to have to waste money on new equipment (again).

All the ITTF cares about is slowing the ball down (again) under the self-serving delusion this will suddenly make their failing pro tour catch on.

Of course the above post is totally out of place and is a hysterical reaction from someone that is ill informed and not seeking to be informed, instead venting out of control. The reality is that all manufacturers are involved in the process and nothing will change from before. The ball manufacturers can be counted on the fingers of one hand. All others receive balls pre-stamped with their own logo from the source manufacturer (2 in China, one in Japan and one in Korea). So the supply from the source will continue as it is now, and the celluloid balls will have sufficient time to be gradually phased out. At the lower levels it will actually be a bonanza, because celluloid balls will be made available at a large discount, and will be still legal as they are now for some time (perhaps 2 or 3 years) until all stocks are depleted.

Regarding the robots, the balls should all fit as they will still be 40mm balls, however, the tolerance will be upwards instead of upwards and downwards. This is not like the change from 38mm to 40mm. Most robots have a margin and therefore we do not anticipate any problems.

The early indications of the Poly balls is that it is more bouncy and less spinny. Our goal is to get it as close as possible to the current celluloid ball. It will never be 100% exactly the same, for obvious reasons, but we hope to get to around 95% the same. from early indications, we expect a very short adaptation period, of course the adaptation may vary from player to player depending on their style.



Much of this speculation does not appear to be grounded in any factual data. I am aware that the president of an international sporting body has answered numerous questions (many of them overtly hostile) from ooakforum members in the past. I hope the ITTF's well of tolerance matches its desire to dispel rumour and gossip.

It is my pleasure to post answers directly on the Forum, which I read often. But lately I have less and less time to answer all the questions on OOAK and MyTableTennis Forum. Of course it does not help when some of the posts are rude and aggressive, but it indicates the passion we have in the world of TT.

It will be noted that I haven't asked all of the possible questions that could be asked. I've tried to stick to: who's involved, will it affect robots; the playing characteristics of the new ball. Anyone who wants to ask questions they think are more important - such as "I play in my club's third division. Why wasn't I asked for my opinion?" :rofl: - then I can recommend a politely written email to the ITTF.

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PostPosted: 03 Dec 2011, 09:42 
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What did he say in regard to the ITTF lies about the worldwide ban on celluloid? Or did you just decide to lob him softball questions he can easily put a spin on? Ask him to provide proof, just as you ask OOAK members to back up their statements.

Also I may be blunt and sick of the ITTF's gross mismanagement, but I'm hardly ill-informed.

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PostPosted: 03 Dec 2011, 10:20 
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mynamenotbob wrote:
What did he say in regard to the ITTF lies about the worldwide ban on celluloid? Or did you just decide to lob him softball questions he can easily put a spin on? Ask him to provide proof, just as you ask OOAK members to back up their statements.

Also I may be blunt and sick of the ITTF's gross mismanagement, but I'm hardly ill-informed.


I am with you on this mnnb... Adham lied to us about worldwide celluloid ban and refuses to own up to it.
So who was the misinformed (or worse, being purposefully dishonest)? Ask him about that, Tassie.


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PostPosted: 03 Dec 2011, 10:32 
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mynamenotbob wrote:
What did he say in regard to the ITTF lies about the worldwide ban on celluloid? Or did you just decide to lob him softball questions he can easily put a spin on? Ask him to provide proof, just as you ask OOAK members to back up their statements.

Also I may be blunt and sick of the ITTF's gross mismanagement, but I'm hardly ill-informed.

No, I didn't ask him about "the worldwide ban on celluloid". Yes, I did lob him "softball questions" - except I call it being polite. If you have a problem with being "lied" to, why don't you write to Adham Sharara asking him to provide a response? Or would you rather just save your accusations for the forum alone? Do what I've done: send an email, get a reply and post both here so that they can be evaluated.

BTW, why are you asking what I asked in my email? I posted the email here for you to read. Or am I part of the conspiracy as well? :rofl: :rofl: :rofl:

I note that in Sharara's reply to my email, he commented upon posts being "rude and aggressive" - perhaps that may have something to do with a lack of response to accusations about lying? It may also be (entirely my speculation here) that he recognises that conspiracy theorists never change their minds. If anything, they just add more layers to their conspiracies.

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PostPosted: 03 Dec 2011, 10:34 
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roundrobin wrote:
I am with you on this mnnb... Adham lied to us about worldwide celluloid ban and refuses to own up to it.
So who was the misinformed (or worse, being purposefully dishonest)? Ask him about that, Tassie.

No, you ask him about that, rr. ;)

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PostPosted: 03 Dec 2011, 10:34 
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Tassie52 wrote:

Post 2:
When I interviewed Vladimir Samsonov in September he said he had not tested the new balls yet...

the players, as well as other rubber manufacturers are now in the process of testing the new samples.


So, they made the decision BEFORE they even tested the plastic balls and BEFORE they found them appropriate.

Who is going to tell me now, that the people behind this decision care about players?

The new ball will be different enough to start a huge buying and testing of equipment by many millions of players worldwide in attempt to somehow compensate for the different properties of the new ball, this is my prediction. A huge amount of money will be made by some people. Of course, the ITTF volunteers did not have that in mind, no.


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PostPosted: 03 Dec 2011, 10:42 
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Tassie52 wrote:
roundrobin wrote:
I am with you on this mnnb... Adham lied to us about worldwide celluloid ban and refuses to own up to it.
So who was the misinformed (or worse, being purposefully dishonest)? Ask him about that, Tassie.

No, you ask him about that, rr. ;)


I was being facetious. ;)
I do not care an "answer" from an apparent liar except an apology. It's not my job to repeat Adham's propaganda, here or anywhere else. As of now, his reason to replace the ball has been a complete lie based on all evidences.


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PostPosted: 03 Dec 2011, 10:49 
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roundrobin wrote:
Tassie52 wrote:
roundrobin wrote:
I am with you on this mnnb... Adham lied to us about worldwide celluloid ban and refuses to own up to it.
So who was the misinformed (or worse, being purposefully dishonest)? Ask him about that, Tassie.

No, you ask him about that, rr. ;)


I was being facetious. ;)
I do not care an "answer" from an apparent liar except an apology. It's not my job to repeat Adham's propaganda, here or anywhere else. As of now, his reason to replace the ball has been a complete lie based on all evidences.

In other words, it's easier for you to just keep on making accusations without having to engage in any process of discussion. :n:

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PostPosted: 03 Dec 2011, 10:51 
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Tassie52 wrote:
In other words, it's easier for you to just keep on making accusations without having to engage in any process of discussion. :n:


What accusations? Are you dense?
Never mind, don't answer it. |(


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PostPosted: 03 Dec 2011, 11:00 
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Smartguy wrote:
Tassie52 wrote:

Post 2:
When I interviewed Vladimir Samsonov in September he said he had not tested the new balls yet...

the players, as well as other rubber manufacturers are now in the process of testing the new samples.


So, they made the decision BEFORE they even tested the plastic balls and BEFORE they found them appropriate.

Who is going to tell me now, that the people behind this decision care about players?

The new ball will be different enough to start a huge buying and testing of equipment by many millions of players worldwide in attempt to somehow compensate for the different properties of the new ball, this is my prediction. A huge amount of money will be made by some people. Of course, the ITTF volunteers did not have that in mind, no.

I note a certain amount of "cherry picking" here. Why not go back to the original post and include the full statement?

Quote:
When I interviewed Vladimir Samsonov in September he said he had not tested the new balls yet... I sure the Althletes Commission that he chairs was consulted on this decision and there was considerable support. I will ask him.
Mr. Samsonov was supplied with the samples, 3 different types, he tested the balls and asked several players to test the balls as well. Their report was provided to the manufacturers and they have made adjustments accordingly. The manufacturers provided new samples in November and the players, as well as other rubber manufacturers are now in the process of testing the new samples. The Athlete Commission Chairman is fully involved in the process.


Players were consulted, through the appropriate channel - that's what the Athletes Commission is.

"Who is going to tell me now, that the people behind this decision care about players?" Actually, they do care about players. It's just that the players they consult are elite players.

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PostPosted: 03 Dec 2011, 11:10 
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roundrobin wrote:
Tassie52 wrote:
In other words, it's easier for you to just keep on making accusations without having to engage in any process of discussion. :n:


What accusations? Are you dense?
Never mind, don't answer it. |(

ac·cu·sa·tion noun
1. a charge of wrongdoing; imputation of guilt or blame.

When you say that Sharara is lying, you are imputing guilt, charging him with wrongdoing. That's an accusation.

accusation n
1. an allegation that a person is guilty of some fault, offence, or crime; imputation


When you say Sharara is lying, you're alleging that he is guilty of some fault, offence, or crime. That's an accusation.

Of course, if you were really serious you'd be doing something to bring the offender to justice instead of constantly making "accusations" on a TT forum. :D

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PostPosted: 03 Dec 2011, 11:22 
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Tassie52 wrote:
Smartguy wrote:
Quote:
When I interviewed Vladimir Samsonov in September he said he had not tested the new balls yet...
Mr. Samsonov was supplied with the samples, ... the players, as well as other rubber manufacturers are now in the process of testing the new samples.


Players were consulted, through the appropriate channel - that's what the Athletes Commission is.


Samsonov got the samples, but not before September 2011, that means, that he got them AFTER the decision about plastic balls had already been made in May 2011. Which means, that they (the BoD of the ITTF, with Mr.Sharara as a chairman) had made the decision about plastic balls BEFORE they even tested the plastic balls and BEFORE they found them appropriate.

Tassie52, I am sure you did not intend to obfuscate the issue, you just did not get it. If there is still a problem there, I can explain it again to you.


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PostPosted: 03 Dec 2011, 11:27 
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Quote:
From Tassie's correspondence with Adham Sharara:

Much of this speculation does not appear to be grounded in any factual data. I am aware that the president of an international sporting body has answered numerous questions (many of them overtly hostile) from ooakforum members in the past. I hope the ITTF's well of tolerance matches its desire to dispel rumour and gossip.

Tassie, let me get this right. You dismiss our legitimate concerns about the new ball as "speculation" that "does not appear to be grounded in any factual data."

But at the same time you're accepting the ITTF's claims that it's urgent that an untested new ball is rushed into use by July 1, 2013 based on a looming worldwide ban on celluloid.

Obviously you're more interested in furthering the ITTF agenda than getting to the truth.

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PostPosted: 03 Dec 2011, 11:46 
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Tassie52 wrote:
Anyone who wants to ask questions they think are more important - such as "I play in my club's third division. Why wasn't I asked for my opinion?" :rofl: - then I can recommend a politely written email to the ITTF.


You know, Tassie52, at first I wanted to call this posting of yours arrogant, but actually there is some sense in your words. They do not care about our opinions, because they are practically completely independent of the players of any division, and that is the root of the problem.


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PostPosted: 03 Dec 2011, 11:56 
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mynamenotbob wrote:
Tassie, let me get this right. You dismiss our legitimate concerns about the new ball as "speculation" that "does not appear to be grounded in any factual data."

But at the same time you're accepting the ITTF's claims that it's urgent that an untested new ball is rushed into use by July 1, 2013 based on a looming worldwide ban on celluloid.

Obviously you're more interested in furthering the ITTF agenda than getting to the truth.

No, mnnb, I'm not "more interested in furthering the ITTF agenda". But then it doesn't matter how many times I say that, you're so convinced I am that you fail to recognise that I'm actually more interested in "getting to the truth". I just think that getting to the truth is achieved by asking questions rather than by making accusations.

Have you written to Sharara asking him about the "looming worldwide ban on celluloid"??? Until then, I'll be inclined to think that you're not interested in "getting to the truth".

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