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PostPosted: 08 Mar 2016, 20:05 
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I suppose a more nuanced answer would be...

No one's happy that there weren't more "real fans" at the WTTC, and more could have been done to advertise it locally. Still, I don't think you can blame ITTF for not filling the stadium - it's an impossible task, regardless of whether you think the ball changes et al. helped or hurt.

But it wasn't ITTF who brought the crowd or paid for it, it was the main sponsor, Perfect. And rather than be berated for it, they should be thanked. Whatever else you may think of China, the Chinese system, the ITTF, rules changes, etc., the presence of that huge crowd really gave the event some atmosphere.

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PostPosted: 08 Mar 2016, 20:11 
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They may not have been TT fans but they were sure enjoying...something. And do Malaysians always support China by default when Malaysia isn't involved?


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PostPosted: 08 Mar 2016, 20:27 
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The Chinese fans were definitely enjoying themselves. Table tennis fans or not, they were cheering on their national team and enjoying an all-expenses-paid trip to a foreign land, with free hotel rooms and meals. Who wouldn't enjoy themselves? :lol: Table tennis enthusiasts or not, I'm sure they all knew who Liu Shiwen and Xu Xin were. Who in China wouldn't?

I'll post some photos later.. I think you'll find them entertaining. :lol:

As for Malaysian fans supporting the Chinese.. Ummm... it used to be like that. In the old days most of the people playing table tennis in Malaysia were ethnic Chinese. And they saw the Chinese as being, well, like Americans view the English - long lost cousins. These days it isn't as true any more, some of the top players are not ethnic Chinese, and attitudes among the Malaysian Chinese seem to have shifted somewhat.

During the group matches the biggest (and loudest) group of fans were the Malaysians, followed by the Japanese. The Malaysian matches were always on Table 1 (in the middle of the hall), the Japanese matches on Table 3 (against the back wall). The Japanese would congregate above Table 3, the Malaysians over Table 4 (the opposite wall). From what I saw, they were cheering the Malaysian team and ignoring the Chinese. The Malaysian teams were way overmatched, of course (World Team Ranking No. 60 for the men, 48 for the women - we'd have been in the Third Division) but did manage to win one or two matches overall. We enjoyed it while we could.

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PostPosted: 09 Mar 2016, 00:08 
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its a shame the crowd needed to be "topped up" with non-TT fans, but its probably a good move for the future of its events. I don't know if they did enough prior to the event to get a good crowd, but you'd hope they did all they could.

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PostPosted: 09 Mar 2016, 00:35 
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Whether or not it happens in the future will depend on the sponsor, I suppose. The crowd WILL need topping up unless they hold the event in Germany (there's the Bundesliga) or in China. Just no getting around the fact that table tennis is pretty small-time in most places, and the biggest crowd of people you'll find is those who play seriously and follow the sport. You won't get the sort of audience that goes to football matches, which would be the general public (except in China). And there won't be 2-3 thousand of these players in any given town outside China or certain parts of Europe. You'll have to siphon off maybe 100-120 of those you do get as volunteers (therefore "free tickets"). A Chinese sponsor would be more likely to pay for this sort of thing, perhaps to earn brownie points with the government (since it promotes patriotism). I suspect there was probably some sort of government money added to what Perfect put in this time, too.

Somehow I can't see Herbalife or Amway spending 2-3 million dollars to send a couple thousand supporters to wave American flags, even if it were at the Olympics.

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PostPosted: 09 Mar 2016, 21:04 
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Here's the ITTF's take on it - (it was the sponsor!):-

http://www.ittf.com/_front_page/ittf_fu ... n_ID=2587&


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PostPosted: 09 Mar 2016, 21:26 
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10,000 employees! Wow. I thought maybe 2-3 thousand, but what would that have cost them? Minimum USD300 per person, USD3 million? And 178 million viewers on TV. I suppose China is the only place in the world where table tennis players are national heroes to this degree. Maybe Perfect got some additional sponsorship from TV sources.

The shirts and headgear.. I guess you had to be there in person. As I said, I'll post some photos, it was something else! :lol: I'm just glad I didn't choose that day to actually attend the matches, I'd have been lucky to find somewhere to sit!

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PostPosted: 12 Mar 2016, 08:29 
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It's always disappointing when an unruly crowd ruins a good table tennis rally as frequently happens during an off-the-table loop-loop rally. The surging crowd noise invariably distracts the players, or masks the ball bounce sound, and one of the players soon misses. I've wondered why golf and tennis crowds routinely show proper ball-in-play etiquette while table tennis crowds do not. Now I know one reason: Ignorant non-fans being paid to attend, and probably instructed to cheer and generate 'excitement'.. like a good TV game show contestant.


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PostPosted: 12 Mar 2016, 10:20 
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Well, that was the case here. Don't know what it's like in China. Supposedly even golf and tennis audiences there (who pay to get in) don't know how to behave (because it's new to them). I recall reading reports of golf spectators wandering onto the fairway, disturbing balls, etc. And Li Na actually had to yell at a crowd to tell them to shut up once (some were shouting "advice" when she was getting ready to serve). The thing is - table tennis will NEVER be able to get huge audiences if it is unable to pull in non-involved people, like the big sports do. If we only rely on enthusiasts and players, there is no way we'll fill halls. In China they've managed to do this, you have "armchair fans" of table tennis much like you have that whole demographic in America of people who will tune in to watch the Super Bowl while swilling beer and potato chips on the couch. How these people will behave at the stadium depends on how long they've been doing it and how you handle them - the commentators would have quite a bit to do with it. In Tennis, the umpire will ask the crowd to quiet down before the serve, I don't see why it can't be done in table tennis.

From what I've been told, table tennis audiences, even in Europe, can be noisy. Gatien's father would supposedly bring a bugle or something of the sort. Others would bring compressed air horns. Don't know if they only use them at appropriate times.

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PostPosted: 13 Mar 2016, 18:11 
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ATTRACTING PEOPLE, ATTRACTING MONEY.. ...

40* Celsius degree noonday out temperature, far beyond human endurance, much like a hell's tar heater.
People from Europa all scared to arrive to Malaisia, hot weather scalded.
ITTF should make a better reasonable choice of the host country.

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VOLEYBALL EVENTS "FULHOUSE REQUIREMENT."
One more curious fact,
-- Volleyball World Circuit did now fixed a heavy penalty fee for the vacant seats in the play-hall. The domestic event organizers is under obligation to "provide" a fulhouse audience by any means available. As usual, the school falks and military students would fill in the spectators seats during voleyball WC events.
Just a fake decoration, something like artificial flowers to make a better TV show and better "heated" environment to please the TV viewer's eye

More money income from the Major Advertisers is surely the target designation of the "fulhouse requirements" ....


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