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PostPosted: 27 Feb 2015, 08:03 
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Mr. NORIO TAKASHIMA INTERVIEW
高島規郎先生へのインタビュー


Norio Takashima was one of the best defensive players in the history of table tennis. Through the 1970s and early 1980s, he was the number one defensive player in the world. After the 1975 World Championships in India, in which he reached the semi-finals, his world ranking was number 5. On the way to the semi-finals, Takashima beat Milan Orlanski, Jacques Secretin, and Kjell Johannson, until losing 3-2 to Anton Stipancic. (That match with Stipancic was also famous for its rain delay!) He also reached the quarter-finals in the 1979 World Championships.

I think that it is fair to compare Takashima in the 1970s to Joo SaeHyuk of today, since in those days Takashima epitomized defensive table tennis. He was probably the favourite of every defensive player in the world. He used inverted rubber on both sides (Butterfly Plous). He was capable of beating anyone, including Jonyer and Surbek, who were probably the best players against defense in the world. He chopped the ball rather late, often near floor, and was known amongst his opponents for incredible spin variation. His offense was not like that of modern defenders like Joo, but he could kill any shot that was even slightly loose, and his backhand pick hitting was tremendous.

Takashima defeated all of the top players in the world in the 1970s and early 1980s. Many of those players are amongst the greatest in table tennis history, such as Nobuhiko Hasegawa, Stellan Bengtsson, Xi Enting, Guo Yueha, Liang Geliang, Xu Shaofa, Li Zhenshi, Li Jingguang, Tibor Klampar, Gabor Gergeley, and all those other players listed above. He played on the Japanese team in all the world championships between 1971 and 1983.

Nowadays, Norio Takashima in a professor at Kinki University in Japan. He also remains active in table tennis as a coach, and recently developed four different versions of the new Kokutaku/Takashima table tennis blade, which came out in 2014.

Last year, I contacted Norio Takashima by email, asking him if he was interested in doing an interview for the OOAK Forum. I had not spoken with him in 40 years, and so it was very exciting to receive the following email from him.

----------
Dear Steven

Hello. How are you?
This is Norio Takashima.
I read your email and decided to accept an email interview.
I will answer their questions as possible as I can.
Please feel free to ask me anything at anytime.
Thank you

Norio Takashima

----------

This interview would not have been possible if not for help from Kyoko Matsumura who translated our questions from English into Japanese, and help from Nobuyuki Sakai who translated Takashima's answers from Japanese into English. I'd also like to thank the members of the OOAK Forum for providing the questions for Norio Takashima, and also Haggisv (Alex, forum admin) who did numerous behind-the-scenes things which were crucial for a successful interview and his friend Kim. Most of all, I would like to thank Norio Takashima for taking the time from his busy schedule to answer all of questions.

It is exciting to present the OOAK Forum interview of Norio Takashima!

Early years

When did you start to play table tennis and why?
卓球を始められたのはいくつのときですか。また、はじめられた理由は?

14才(中学2年)のとき。先生に勧められた。(元々は野球少年・・ケガのため断念した)
I started to play table tennis when I was 14 years old in the second grade of junior high school. My teacher recommeded it. I used to play baseball, but I gave it up because of an injury.



Why did you choose to become a defensive player? Were you perhaps motivated to play defense by the Japanese chopper Kenji Kasai?
カット主戦型になられたのはなぜですか?同じカット主戦型の笠井賢二選手の影響を受けたということはありますか?

先輩の勧めがあった。色々なカットマンのプレーを参考にした。
It was recommended to me by older students in my junior high school. I chose to play defense and then learned more from watching many defensive players.



What other sports did you play as a child and why did you take the path of table tennis?
子供のころは卓球以外にどのようなスポーツをなさいましたか。卓球を選ばれた理由は?

7才の頃から少年野球をやった(6年間)。ケガのため卓球に変更した。
I had played baseball for 6 years after starting when I was 7 years old. I changed to playing table tennis because of an injury.



What was the reaction of your parents to you first starting out playing table tennis and then again as you improved and became one of the worlds best players?
卓球を始められたことに対して、ご両親はなにかおっしゃいましたか?また、世界選手権において好成績を収められたことに対して、なにかおっしゃいましたか?

スポーツをやる事は賛成であった。世界選手権で勝っても普通の態度であった。
My parents supported all of my interest in sports. They behaved no differently even when I won matches in the world championships.



Equipment

In the 1970s, you used Butterfly Plous rubber. Why did you choose to use that particular rubber? What type of blade did you use?
70年代、バタフライのプラウスというラバーを使っておいででしたが、なぜその選択をされたのですか?また、どのラケットを使っておいででしたか?

カット守備主戦型として、一番安定感があるラバーであった。使いやすいのがよかった。厚さは3 mm程度。
I used this rubber because it offers a sense of stability and easiness for a defensive player. The thickness of the rubber was ~3 mm (sponge + rubber).



Toward the end of your career, you switched to long pips on your backhand. Why did you make this change?
選手時代の後半にバックハンドを粒高ラバーに変えられましたが、それには理由がおありですか?

腰痛が悪化し、裏ソフトラバーでは肉体的、体力的に無理になったために変更した。
It was because I had physical difficulty when using inverted rubber due to worsened pain in the lower back.



How much did it cost to buy the table tennis equipment you used in the 1970's and 1980's?
70年代、80年代に使われた卓球用品の費用はいかほどでしたか?

年間にラケット30本、ラバー100〜150枚をメーカーから提供を受けていた。
I was supported by manufacturers so that I could use 30 blades and 100-150 sheets of rubber per year.


How often did you change your equipment - blade and rubbers?
ラケットやラバーはどのような頻度で交換されていましたか?
1週間程度で交換したが、中に良いラバーがある場合は使い切らず保管していた。
I usually replaced a sheet of rubber once per week. I sometimes kept a good sheet of rubber longer before it wore out.



When choosing your equipment what came first / what was the most important thing to get right? The blade, the FH rubber or the BH rubber?
ご使用になられた卓球用品で特にこだわられたものはおありですか。

特注品のラケット(ヒノキ材3枚合板)。最初の頃はヤナギ材(3枚合板)を使用。
I used a custom-made blade composed of 3 plies of wood (Japanese cypress). In the early part of my carrier, I used a blade made of willow (3 plies of wood).



Fitness and Training

Can you give us some idea of your training routine, including physical exercise? How many hours a day did you train at your peak? How much did you train as a teenager?
欠かさずなさった練習やトレーニング・プログラムなど、選手時代のトレーニングについてお聞かせください。毎日何時間ぐらいトレーニングされましたか。年齢によってトレーニングにかける時間に変化がありましたか。

ランニング:(10代〜20才)1日10 km、(21才〜22才)1日30 km、(23才〜30才)1日5 km〜10 km。ウェイトトレーニング:(19才〜28才)MAXスクワット120 kg、ベンチ85 kg(体重58 kg)。トレーニング時間:1日2時間。
Running: Between the ages of 14 and 20, I ran 10 km/day. At 21 and 22 years, I ran 30 km/day, and between 23 and 30 years old, I ran 5-10 km/day.
Weight training: Squatting 120 kg max. Bench press 85 kg max. (Note that my weight was 58 kg.)
Time of traning: 2 hours a day.



Players such as yourself, Hasegawa, Itoh, Guo, and Surbek appeared to be remarkably fit. How would you compare the standard of fitness of these players with today's top players?
高島先生や長谷川信彦選手、伊藤繁雄選手、郭躍華選手、シュルベク選手は皆さん万全の体調で試合に臨まれておられるように思いますが、今のトップ選手と比べて違いがありますか。

トップアスリートは自己管理がしっかりしているので、コンディションは変わっていない。
There are no differences because top athletes keep themselves in good health.


During your career, you had to deal with back and knee injuries. Since many table tennis players have these types of injuries, do you have suggestions for how to reduce the frequency and intensity of injuries?
選手時代に背中や膝の故障を経験なさいましたが、卓球選手になにかけが予防に関するアドバイスがおありですか。

1970年代の日本卓球界はドクターやトレーナーが不在であり、個人の責任でやっていたため、オーバーワークに追い込まれ、故障やケガを発症してしまうケースが多かった。ドクター、トレーナー、栄養士に相談が必要。
During the 1970s in Japan, there were no doctors/trainers specialized for table tennis players, and hence players needed to decide ways to practice with their own judgement. As a result, players tended to have too heavy a workload, which often caused injuries. It is indispensable for players to consult doctors, trainers, and nutritionists.



I was once told that you did a lot of running, perhaps as much as 10 km per day. Do you feel that a lot of running is an important part of training for a defensive player?
選手時代、ランニングを一日に10キロかかさず続けられたと聞きましたが、カット主戦型選手にとってランニングは大切なトレーニングだと思われますか。

持久性の戦型のため長距離走は欠かせない。一定のスピードも大事だが、バリエーションを入れ、ターンダッシュや負荷のある坂道ダッシュも必要。
Long-distance running is indispensable for enhancing stamina, which is crucial for a defensive player. While running at a constant speed is important, it is also necessary to sprint in alternating directions and to sprint uphill.



Important Matches, Strategy, and Techniques

Who were the most difficult opponents for you - Guo and Stipancic perhaps?
高島先生にとって一番手ごわい相手とは?郭躍華選手やステパンチッチ選手はどのような対戦相手でしたか。

郭選手はピッチが速く、特に前後動の戦術に優れていた。ステパンチッチ選手はサウスポー独特のシュートドライブとスピードループが特長的であった。
Guo hit the ball rapidly off the bounce and in particular, he was excellent at making me move forward and backward. Stipancic was very good at hitting topspin with sidespin (clockwise), which is characteristic for left-handed players, and he had a very fast loop drive.



Do you think you might have reached the World Final in 1975 if it hadn't been for 'rain stopped play'?
1975年の世界選手権で雨による試合中断がなけれは、決勝戦まで進まれたと思いますか。

勝負は最後の1本、1球までわからないが、後半ステパンチッチ選手が非常に疲労しているのがはっきりわかっていたので、中断がなければチャンスはあったと思う。
Although the winner is not decided until the game is over, I think there were possibilities of my winning the match if it was not stopped by rain. This is because Stipancic definitely seemed to be very tired in the last half of the match.



What were some of your best or more memorable matches?
印象に残る対戦についてお聞かせください。

国内では全日本で二度戦った長谷川選手に勝ったこと。世界では1975年スウェーデンのヨハンソン選手に勝った試合が印象的であった。
In domestic matches, I had two memorable matches with Nobuhiko Hasegawa, including a win in the All-Japan Championships. In international matches, I had a memorable win over a Swedish player, Kjell Johansson, in 1975.



Can you describe what it was like to play against Surbek and Jonyer, probably the first two great loopers in table tennis history? What strategy was necessary to beat them?
最初にループドライブを始めたとされる、シュルベク選手やヨニエル選手との対戦についてお聞かせください。どのような手法で勝たれたのですか。

ヨーロッパ選手はドライブに威力があり、パワーを抑えてカットするのは困難なため、フルスイングをさせないカット、深いナックル(切らない)で対応し、オーバーミスを誘う戦術が主であった。
Because players in Europe hit powerful drives, it is difficult to chop their balls by absorbing their power. I mainly took the strategy to either chop balls that are difficult for my opponent to hit with full power, or to use a long, no-spin chop that my opponents often hit off the end of the table.



Why did you play so far from the table, often chopping the ball near the floor? Was it to allow the ball to slow down, which would give you more control, or was there some other reason?
卓球台からかなり離れて(床の近くで)ボールを打たれていますが、なぜですか。ボールの速度の加減を調整するためですか?それとも他に理由がおありですか。

台から離れないと返球できないくらいのパワードライブ時代であったので、守備範囲を広くした。また、台の下でのインパクトは相手が変化を見づらいため効果があった。
It was difficult to return a ball unless I played far from the table because many players hit powerful loop drives. I also chopped the ball below the table which made it difficult for my opponents to judge the ball's spin.



What particular tactics did you use against pips out attackers? Nowadays, since there are so few pips out attackers, one rarely has the opportunity to see a pips out attacker against a defensive player.
近年、表ソフト攻撃型選手が少なくなり、カット主戦型選手との対戦を見る機会が減りましたが、表ソフト攻撃型選手との試合ではどのような対戦法を使われましたか。

十分な体勢で早く打たせないために、コースを厳しくして返球し、攻撃的なカットを入れた。台からあまり離れず、チャンス球を攻撃する狙いを多くした。
In order not to give my opponents time to prepare, I imparted an offensive push/chop to a place where it is difficult to return. Also, I stayed close to the table, watching for offensive opportunities.



I read that you defeated Liang Geliang? As he was excellent at everything, both offense and defense, I would think that it would be extremely hard to defeat him. What tactics did you use to beat him?
梁戈亮選手との試合で勝たれたと聞いておりますが、攻・防戦両方に優れた選手との試合にどのように臨まれたのですか。

最初の頃の対戦では、一方的に先手攻撃され、守備のみに追い込まれ、自在にゲーム運びの上手で負けたが、攻撃力がアップし、攻守のバランスが取れてきて対応することができた。特にスマッシュ技術が相手より強くなったのが勝因である。
In the initial matches of my career, I was hard-pressed to defend against his quick attack and lost because he controlled the game. But, I could successfully handle his game after my offensive power and balance between offence and defence improved. In particular, I was able to win because my smashes were better than his.



Many people feel that Guo Yuehua was the greatest player ever. You have played Guo a number of times, including in the quarter finals of the 1979 world championships in North Korea, and you defeated him in 1976. Can you describe what it was like to play against Guo? What strategy did you use to defeat Guo?
多くの人が郭躍華選手を最強選手として挙げておりますが、その郭選手と1979年の北朝鮮で開催された世界選手権の準々決勝を含めて幾度も対戦され、1976年に郭選手を破られました。郭選手との試合の感想、また戦略などについてお聞かせください。

前後動に非常に速く攻められ、フットワークが及ばなかった頃から徐々にスピードアップでき、ストップ球に対する攻撃や変化で対応でき、攻撃チャンスが多くなった。また、相手のペースを崩せるようになった。特にサーブから3球目を防ぐことができた。
At first, he forced me to move backward and forward with his quick attack, but as I gradually improved my footwork, I gained offensive opportunities, including an attack against drop shots. In addition, I could eventually control the game. In particular, I could prevent his attack immediately after his serve.



Your match in the team competition against Li Jingguang in the 1973 World Championships in Sarajevo was probably one of the greatest matches in table tennis history. Can you please tell us some interesting facts about this incredible match?
卓球史上に残る1973年のサラエボ世界選手権での李景光選手との対戦についてお聞かせください。

李選手とセットオールになり、促進ルールの戦いになり、14-20で負けていたが、19-20に持ち込んだときの5ポイントの取り方が今でも思い出せない。最後の一球もミラクルであったが李選手に止められた。
In the final game, the expedite rule was applied. Although I was behind by a score of 14-20, I was able to get 5 points in a row, to reach the score of 19-20. I can't remember how I got the 5 points. My last shot was also a kind of miracle, but it was blocked back by Li.


How did you practice the mental side of the game, staying strong mentally, never giving up, working out players during games and finding their weaknesses?
精神的な強さはどのように培われるのでしょうか。どのような訓練をなさいましたか。

甘さのある練習環境を作らないこと。「ヒリヒリ」とした緊張感で一球一球に集中すること。最後の1本まであきらめないこと。人と違った技と底力を出せるかどうか。
Do not practice half-heartedly. Concentrate fully on the ball at all times. Do not give up until the game is over. Acquire unique techniques and be strong at the fundamentals.



If a defender "wins" a match it's often portrayed as being due to mistakes from their opponent. Did this ever bother you, or did you feel as a defender, you never really got the true credit you deserved, certainly from the media, for your ability to create forced errors rather than unforced errors from opponents.
ディフェンダーが勝った理由として対戦相手のミスがしばしば挙げられますが、どう思われますか。

試合における3つの要素は、自分の得意技で取る、絶対ミスをしない安定性で取る、相手にミスを引き出す方法で取る。(常に作戦、戦術を立て、計算通りにポイントすること)
There are three elements for winning points in matches. These are to use my best shots, not to make an unforced error, and to force my opponent into making a mistake. It is important to win points by formulating strategies.



What is the most important skill for a player of your style to have?
高島先生のスタイルで最も大事な技はなんであると考えられますか。

相手に早いタイミングでポイントされないこと。サーブ、レシーブ、台上ネットプレーでミスしないこと。常にラリー展開から自分のペースに引き込むこと。そして、変化カットと攻撃のバリエーションでポイントを取る。(フォアハンドカットの変化球とフットワークの速さ)
Do not give away points by attacking too early. Do not make a mistake in serve, receive, and pushing. Be sure to gain the initiative during the rally. Get points by attacking, and with no-spin and sidespin forehand chops. Good footwork is crucial for making an attack.



What is your favorite table tennis shot?
いちばんお好きなショットは何ですか。

カットからのバックハンド攻撃。
Attack with my backhand after chopping.



What is the hardest shot in table tennis for you to play when you were at your peak and now?
最も難しいショットは何ですか。今と以前とで違いがありますか。

台に寄せられてからのパワードライブの返球と変化(回転)の落差。
Returning a powerful drive near the table immediately after moving forward. To maintain control against a large variation of spin.



What is the most important attribute or skill a table tennis player needs?
卓球選手にとって最も大切な素養・素質または技とは、何であると思われますか。

卓球の優先順位:テクニック、戦術、フィーリング、メンタル、フィジカル。「感性」と「地道な努力」。ラケットタッチ(インパクトの柔軟性)
The order of priority for playing table tennis: technique, strategy, talent, mental and physical strength. It is also important to put forth a full effort at all times, and to have control of the ball (good touch) at impact.



The Professional World Scene

Do you have one player who you would consider to be the greatest ever in terms of their dominance during their career? Guo perhaps?
最も優れた卓球選手を挙げるとしたらどなたでしょうか。郭躍華選手でしょうか。

歴代の世界チャンピオンであるが、中でもワルドナー選手(スウェーデン)がNo. 1であると思う。
Although previous world champions are great players, I think Jan-Ove Waldner (Sweden) is the best among them.



Do you have any thoughts and/or stories to share on Hasegawa, Surbek, and Liang Geliang - both in terms of them as players and as persons?
長谷川選手、シュルベク選手、梁戈亮選手の、選手として、また、人として、印象に残ったことをお話しください。

「努力家」であり、その国の選手から尊敬されている。3名とも真面目な性格である。
They are hard workers and receive respect from players from their own countries. All of them are serious.



Have you kept any long-term friendships with any of your old international rivals?
昔の対戦相手との交友関係はありますか。

世界中に対戦した有名選手とは交友がある。1970年代、1980年代に活躍した選手は、現在、その国のヘッドコーチや協会役員になっているので、時々会っては友好を温めている。
Yes. I maintain friendships with famous players that I have competed against from around the world. Since players who flourished in the 70s and 80s are now head coaches or board members in their countries, I sometimes come across them which gives me the opportunity to renew my old friendships with them.



In the 1977 and 1979 World Championships, you were knocked out in the later stages by Guo Yuehua both times. Was he the best player in your era? If not, who do you consider to be the best in your time?
1977年、1979年の世界選手権の時期の郭躍華選手が最強の選手であると思われますか。その他の選手を選ばれますか。

当時の中国では最強の選手である。
He was the best player in China at that time.



In today’s game, coaches video virtually every match that is played and analyze that video and also videos of opponents. How did you scout or review opponents strengths and weakness and your own strength and weakness. What recording or analysis techniques did you use to identify and to improve your own game.
近年は監督がすべての試合をビデオにとり対戦相手の研究をしますが、高島先生はどのように対戦相手のことを研究されたのですか。

試合でのビデオも活用しているが、他の選手から特徴やサーブ分析の情報を得ていた。技術レベルの分析と多用する技のパーセンテージを数値化した。
I utilized videos of matches and also obtained information from my friends about playing styles and serving techniques of other players. In addition, I analyzed other players from a quantitative viewpoint, focusing on the statistics of various shots that they frequently use.



Was player sponsorship a big thing when you were playing, and what were the benefits of being sponsored?
選手時代、スポンサーがついておられましたか。スポンサーの長短をお聞かせください。

スポンサーは用具とユニフォームのみ。(時代的に金銭の提供はない)
Only equipment and clothes were suppied by the sponsor. Monetary support was not common at that time.



Who were the characters of the game when you played, and what made them such great characters?
“おもしろい”対戦相手はいましたか?どうしてそう思われたのですか。

ユーゴスラビアのカリニッチ選手。身長が2 mを越していて、2階から打たれたような感じがした。
Zoran Kalinic of Yugoslavia. Since he is over 2 m tall, his shots were as if they came from the second floor.



The History of Defensive Table Tennis

How much did the change from 38 mm to 40 mm affect defensive players?
38ミリから40ミリへの変化が選手にもたらした影響とはなんでしょう。

スピードは減速したが、台上テクニック(特にチキータ)が上達し、プレーが速くなり、また、打球点が高いのでカウンター技術が向上した。
While the speed of ball was reduced, new techniques on the table, particularly the banana flip, were developed. The speed of play became quicker, as players counter-hit, looped, and drove the ball off the bounce.


What do you think of the many recent changes the ITTF has made? Have they helped the sport or hurt the sport?
近年のITTFによるルール等の変更について、どのように思われますか。

試合が21点制から11点制になったルール変更は、全体的な試合の組み立て方を大きく変えた(見る側からすれば、あっという間に終わってしまう。楽しめない)。ボールがセルロイドからプラスチックに変更になった点は、今後に課題が残る。ボールの堅さ、柔らかさが統一されていない(時間がかかる)。ルールが変わり過ぎる。
The change of the scoring system from 21 points to 11 points has significantly affected how players manage the game. For the audience, the game ended sooner which was less enjoyable for them. One problem is that the quality of the new plastic balls varies from one manufacturer to the other. For example, the stiffness of the plastic balls is too variable. The frequent changes in the rules are also problematic.



Can you describe for us how you feel about how defensive table tennis has evolved over the years?
以前と今と比べてカット主戦型戦法に違いがあると思われますか。

守備型からオールラウンド型に移行し、カットでのポイントよりも攻撃のポイントを重視している。一方、粘り抜く戦法が少なくなり、すぐに攻撃して崩れるパターンが多い。
In recent years, the defensive players changed to all-round or attacking choppers, and they depend on offense rather than chops to win points. Also, recent defensive players tend not to be patient. Instead, they attack at the beginning of the rally, which results in self-defeating play, i.e., they lose through their own unforced errors.



How would you describe the way that table tennis equipment (blades and rubber) has changed over the years?
卓球用具にどのような変化が見られますか。

材質がカーボン系など反発系で飛ぶラケットが多くなり、ラバーにおいては粘着性の強いもの。スポンジも堅く厚い。
In recent years, players use blades consisting of carbon in order to gain speed, and rubbers that are highly tacky are often used. The sponges are hard and thick.



In the early 1970s, the top defenders used a greater variety of equipment on their backhand, i.e., anti-spin, inverted rubber, short pips, long pips, and even regular pimpled rubber without sponge. Nowadays most defenders use either long pips or short pips. Do you feel that these changes make defensive table tennis less interesting today?
70年代のカット主戦型選手とは違い、近年は粒高か表ソフトのいずれかを使っていますが、この変化をどう見られますか。

ドライブ攻撃に対する守備と安定性は異質粒高が有利だが、色々な変化が出しにくい。慣れられる傾向にある。用具の変化だけでなく、基本的なカットのテクニックが止まっている。より高度なカットスイングの方法を向上させる必要がある。
Although long pips are useful for defence and stability against loop-drive attack, it is difficult to vary the spin with this rubber. Long pips are also easy to play against. Also, chopping techniques have not improved. It is necessary to develop chopping techniques that are more difficult to play against.



Can you describe chopping against the best offense players today, e.g., Xu Xin, Zhang Jike, Ma Long, Wang Hao, compared to chopping against the best players 40 years ago? Do you think that the biggest difference is the modern equipment, or is it something else, e.g., player skill, physical condition, etc.?
40年前と今日を比較して、許昕選手、張継科選手、馬龍選手、王皓選手など、ドライブ主戦型選手に対するカットに違いはありますか。その違いとは用具の違いによるものでしょうか。(それとも選手の技、体力の差等でしょうか。)

攻撃型の技の進歩により、ディフェンス型も戦術レベルが上がっている。カット型も速攻戦術を使い、長いラリーをやめ、変化と攻撃のバリエーションで勝負するようになった。
In response to the improvement of offensive techniques, defensive players have developed better tactics. Nowadays, defensive players do quick-attacks, stopping long rallies, and combine spin variation in their chops with attacks.



Forty years ago, the diversity of styles in table tennis was much greater than it is today. These days most table tennis players are loopers. For a defensive player, does this imply that the range of tactics was greater in the past than it is today? In other words, is table tennis simpler today?
今日の卓球選手の多くがドライブ主戦型であるのに対し、40年前のスタイルは多岐にわたっていました。今日の卓球は、ある意味、簡素化されたと思われますか。

簡素化の意味は、情報化社会の中で卓球のスタイルが洗練されてきたと思われる反面、以前のような、個性的なプレイヤーは少なくなったのは事実である。
The simplification of styles of table tennis has occurred because information (videos) is so readily available on the internet. On the other hand, it is true that the styles of table tennis have become less variable.



Forty years ago, attackers would smash chops that were just a little bit too high. One of the best table tennis players at smashing slightly high chops was Klampar. Nowadays, most table tennis players do not smash these balls. Instead, they loop the ball even faster. As a result, would you say that it is less important nowadays, than in the past, to always chop the ball very low?
40年前、少し高すぎるカットは攻撃型選手によりスマッシュされていました。クランパ選手はこの高めのカットをスマッシュすることを得意としていました。今日の選手はスマッシュをせず、ボールにより速い回転をかけています。このことにより、低めにボールをカットすることは、以前に比べて重要ではなくなったと思われますか。

近年の卓球はドライブ全盛時代であり、スマッシュ技はほとんど見られない(プラボールではこのスマッシュが生きてくると思われる)。カットを低くコントロールしなくても、ドライブ、ループ系なので打ち抜かれないことが多い。しかし、カットからの攻撃のバリエーションを作るには、低いカットが必要。
In recent years, most players are loopers, and smashing is rarely seen (I think smashing will become important for plastic balls). Since attackers return chops with slow loops, it is hardly seen that choppers fail to reach the ball, even if the chops are high. But, it is necessary to chop the ball as low as possible, in order to create opportunities for attacking.



How have serves of defensive players changed over the years?
カット主戦型選手のサーブはどのように変化してきていると思われますか。

守備型は以前と同様、あまり変化サーブを進化させていない。試合は、サーブ、レシーブからの勝負なので、カット型であっても攻撃型と同じ考えで先手必勝を目指すことが大切。「ゆっくり」「のんびり」とカットしようというスタイルは勝利できない時代である。
Defensive players have made little improvement in their serves. Since serves and receives are important for winning games, it is important to be aggressive in serving and service returns, both for defensive and offensive players. Nowadays, it is difficult to win matches for those who think that chopping alone is the preferred return.



You have seen defensive table tennis change so much over the years. Can you describe what have been the most important changes, and what changes do you think will take place in the future?
カット主戦型選手のプレースタイルは年々変化してきていますが、もっとも注目すべき違いは何でしょうか。また、これから何が変わっていくと思われますか。

カットマンという概念を捨て、攻撃的なカット、攻撃選手と同じプレーレベルでやれる型が必要。まさに、1970年代の中国の梁戈亮選手のスタイルが必要。
It is necessary to throw away the concept of a chopper and to adopt the style of playing with offensive chops that are equivalent to attacks by offensive players. This is exactly how Liang Geliang, a Chinese player in 1970s, played.



Has the standard of behavior changed in top level table tennis since the 1970's, if so how?
1970年代と比べてトップレベルの選手の行動基準・態度に違い・変化は見られますか?

トップレベルの選手のマナーやスポーツマンシップは大いに向上している。
Manners and sportsmanship of top-level players have significantly improved.



The Future of Table Tennis

Have you tried the new 40+ plastic ball?
40+のプラスチックボールを使われましたか。ご感想は?

回転量はセルロイドより少なくなり、台でのバウンドの変化がセルロイドより多い。ストップも止まる。セルロイドより球質が堅くなっている。
It is more difficult to spin plastic balls than celluloid balls. The bounce of plastic balls is different from that of celluloid balls. It is easy to block with plastic balls. Plastic balls are also harder than celluloid balls.



What do you think will be the future of defensive table tennis?
これからのディフェンスは、どのように変わっていくとおもわれますか。

素速い動きと高度な戦略性を持ったタイプの選手。攻撃のバリエーションが攻撃選手を上回るテクニックと高い打球点での変化カットが大事。カットマンの速攻戦術型と最後のガマンと辛抱。
It is important to be able to move quickly, to have a high-level strategy, to have a greater variety of attacking techniques than offensive players, to impart spin variation in their chops, and to chop the ball as close to the top of the bounce as possible. It is also necessary to do quick attacks and to be patient and enduring.


Do you think that a defensive player will ever win the men's singles world championships?
世界選手権においてカット主戦型選手が優勝する可能性はあるとおもわれますか。

ディフェンス型が優勝するためには、この型の選手が多く出ること、タイプの違うカット型が多くいることでチャンスが増える。
For a defensive player to win the world championships, it is necessary to increase the population of defensive players with various playing styles.



What do you think would make table tennis more popular? Do you think that reducing the speed and spin of the ball would help? Or, do you think that table tennis is great as it is and changing it to be more popular is not a good idea.
卓球がこれから益々人気のあるスポーツになるためには何か変える必要があるとお考えですか。ボールのスピードやスピンと関係があると思われますか。それとも、変える必要はなく、人気のある・なしを考慮する必要はないと思われますか。

サーブの出し方のルールが改良されてきたので、見る側にわかりやすくなってきた。問題は、中国選手のルール無視が目に余る(ラバーの接着剤)。
It has become easier for the audience to watch games after the service rule was changed. One of the unresolved issues is that Chinese players disregard the rules about glue.



If you could make one rule change for modern table tennis, what would that be?
一つだけルールを変更することが可能であれば、何をかえられますか。

11点制を21点制に戻すこと。21点制の3ゲームマッチとする。選手の技量が最大限に発揮される。
The scoring system should be changed from 11 points back to 21 points (and a 2 out of 3 game match). In this scoring system, better technical skills and tactics are more likely to be reflected in the outcome of matches.



Mr. Norio Takashima today

Do you still play table tennis today? If so, how have you adapted your game for playing at an older age?
今も毎日卓球をなさっておられるのでしょうか。

多くの選手のコーチをボランティアで行っている。毎日は仕事上で無理なので、3日に1回のペース。
I do volunteer work advising many players once every three days. I can't do it everyday because of my work.



Do you play competitively or mostly for enjoyment?
試合に出ておられますか。それとも趣味として楽しまれておられるのでしょうか。

コーチをしているので、見本を見せる程度。
Just for showing various techniques to other players.



If you still play today, what type of equipment do you use?
どのような卓球用品を使っておられますか。

2014年発売のオリジナルラケット4種類を使用(コクタク・タカシマモデル)。
I use 4 versions of my newly-designed Kokutaku/Takashima blade, which came out in 2014.



If you were 20 years old today, how would you play defense? Would you play classical defense as when you were on the Japanese team, or would you play a modern-defensive style with plenty of looping like Joo SaeHyuk?
いま、高島先生が20才であれば、どのようなカット主戦型のプレーをなさると思われますか。現役時代のプレーでしょうか。それともジュ・セヒョクのようなループドライブを使ったプレーでしょうか。

両面裏ソフトの変化カットを主としたオールラウンドプレーを目指し、サーブ、レシーブは攻撃型と同じスタイルから始める。特にカットバリエーションを多彩にするタイプ。
I would try to be an all-round player that chops with spin variation with inverted rubbers on both forehand and backhand. Serves and receives would be similar to those by attackers. In particular, I would want to use both offensive and defensive chops.



Forty years ago, you were incredibly fast. How fast do you move nowadays?
40年前はとても俊敏でおられましたが、今もあの頃のようなスピードを保たれておられますか。

現在63才なので速くは動けないが、技のレベルは進化している。コーチは常に新しい技を研究しなければならない。
Although I can't move quickly since I'm 63 years old now, the quality and variation of my techniques have improved. Advisers always need to develop new techniques.



Japanese Defenders

Over the years, why has Japan had many great defensive players?
日本には優秀なカット主戦型選手がたくさんいますが、その理由はなんでしょうか。

伝統的にカット型を指導するコーチが多くいるが、古いスタイルになっている。
There have traditionally been many coaches and advisers that can instruct defensive players. But, their styles have become an anachronism.



Some Additional Questions

If you were not a table tennis player, why type of career would you have chosen?
卓球選手の道を選ばなければ、どのようなキャリアを目指されたと思われますか。

少年時代にケガがなければプロ野球選手を目指していた。または、プロゴルファー。
I had the goal to be a professional baseball player unless I was injured. Or, a professional golfer.



Have you read the OOAK Forum interviews of Masato Shiono, Joo SaeHyuk, and Seo Hyowon? How did you like these interviews?
OOAKフォーラムでの塩野真人選手、ジュ・セヒョク選手、ソ・ヒョウオン選手のインタビュー記事をご覧になられましたか。ご感想をお聞かせください。

見ていません。
I haven't read them.



Can you describe what it was like to coach Koji Matsushita?
松下浩二選手を指導した経験をお話しください。

80%位カットスタイルが出来上がっていたが、試合における戦術・戦略を指導した。最後の「ツメ」を失敗しない、強いメンタルを教授した。
He had almost established his playing style before I started instructing him. I instructed him about tactics and strategies for games as well as having a strong mindset about not losing after reaching game point.



What was the age and gender make up of table tennis players when you started playing as a child and how has that changed over the years?
高島先生が卓球を始められた頃、一般的に子供たちは何歳頃から卓球を始めていましたか。男子と女子の選手の割合に違いがありましたか。

男女とも、中学生(12〜13才)から始める(学校での部活動)。
Most boys and girls started to play table tennis as a school club activity in junior high school when they were 12-13 years old.



Do you ever consider setting up an academy for teaching table tennis defenders?
カット主戦型選手の卓球道場を設立しようと思われたことはおありですか。

たぶん2015年には、自身の卓球場ができる予定。
My private gym for table tennis may be established in 2015.



How did "fame" and being one of the best players in the world affect your personal life? Did you lose friends from your childhood, did it make you skeptical of new people who you came across in your life, that is, did you think "they only want to know me because of what I've achieved, rather than who I actually am". How do you learn to trust people you have never met before when you are successful at world level?
世界で最も優れた選手のお一人でいらっしゃいますが、名声を得られた影響というものはあったのでしょうか(たとえば、交友関係に変化が生じた・人の自分に対する態度に変化が見られた・他人を信頼することが難しくなった等)。

日本は過去の名声によって人生が変わることは少ない。我々の時代は選手を引退すると自力で人生を考えるのが当たり前である。ただ、人間関係において損得で付き合わないので信頼する友人は多い。
In Japan, early fame does not change one's life in most cases. Players, including me, had to think about their next career by themselves at that time. As for personal relationships, I have many reliable friends.



Would you like to add one last tip or an inspirational message for other defensive table tennis players?
何かわれわれにアドバイス等ございましたら、お聞かせください。

2020年は東京でオリンピック・パラリンピックが開催されます。卓球の素晴らしさをメディアを通して世界に発信してほしいです。
The Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo will be held in 2020. I hope that the media disseminates how wonderful table tennis is to the world.



Copyright Steven Feldstein & OOAK Table Tennis Forum - do not copy or reproduce without permission.

-------------------------end of Interview--------------------------

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PostPosted: 27 Feb 2015, 08:24 
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Fantastic! Thanks so much Steven, for getting this together, and to Takashima for his wisdom.


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PostPosted: 27 Feb 2015, 09:17 
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Thanks very much to all involved. A lot of interesting stuff, including: he didnt start playing until he was 14(!!), running 30km a day, and the acknowledgement that LP are easy to play against.


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PostPosted: 27 Feb 2015, 13:26 
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An awesome interview birding&table.tennis! :clap: :clap: :clap:

Your questions, which obviously came from your own knowledge experiences, made it so much more interesting!

His comments on the plastic balls were interesting...it's good to see he agrees with the general concensus that they are less spinny and harder.

It was surprising to hear he'd like to go back to games to 21. Personally I agree with his reasons there.

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PostPosted: 27 Feb 2015, 16:50 
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WOW !!! Totally awesome interview !!!

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PostPosted: 27 Feb 2015, 19:03 
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Steven, this is a wonderful interview. Great introduction, nice pictures :clap:. I enjoyed reading every sentence. Thank you so much!

Some quotes particularly caught my attention:

Quote:
I was supported by manufacturers so that I could use 30 blades and 100-150 sheets of rubber per year.

Ok, I can more or less understand changing rubbers every week. Do professional players these days change their rubbers every week too? The Belgian (sub-)top players I know change rubbers every 3 months or so. But 30 blades a year???

Quote:
I used a custom-made blade composed of 3 plies of wood (Japanese cypress). In the early part of my carrier, I used a blade made of willow (3 plies of wood).

His recently developed Kokutaku blades are also both 3-plied... What would be the advantage of 3 plies?

Quote:
Do not practice half-heartedly. Concentrate fully on the ball at all times. Do not give up until the game is over. Acquire unique techniques and be strong at the fundamentals.

There are three elements for winning points in matches. These are to use my best shots, not to make an unforced error, and to force my opponent into making a mistake. It is important to win points by formulating strategies.

Do not give away points by attacking too early. Do not make a mistake in serve, receive, and pushing. Be sure to gain the initiative during the rally. Get points by attacking, and with no-spin and sidespin forehand chops. Good footwork is crucial for making an attack.

All so simple, yet so true...

Quote:
In recent years, the defensive players changed to all-round or attacking choppers, and they depend on offense rather than chops to win points. Also, recent defensive players tend not to be patient. Instead, they attack at the beginning of the rally, which results in self-defeating play, i.e., they lose through their own unforced errors.

This is also what Shiono said... practicing 'patience'...

Quote:
It is necessary to throw away the concept of a chopper and to adopt the style of playing with offensive chops that are equivalent to attacks by offensive players. This is exactly how Liang Geliang, a Chinese player in 1970s, played.

I really wonder what he means exactly by 'offensive chops'... Maybe a Geliang video would make it clear?

Quote:
For a defensive player to win the world championships, it is necessary to increase the population of defensive players with various playing styles.

So true. Given the very low number of defensive choppers that play table tennis in general, there are actually quite a lot choppers in the world top (especially for women).

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PostPosted: 01 Mar 2015, 01:26 
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Good interview, Steven! :up: :up: :up:

Pipsy wrote:
Quote:
In recent years, the defensive players changed to all-round or attacking choppers, and they depend on offense rather than chops to win points. Also, recent defensive players tend not to be patient. Instead, they attack at the beginning of the rally, which results in self-defeating play, i.e., they lose through their own unforced errors.

This is also what Shiono said... practicing 'patience'...

Quote:
It is necessary to throw away the concept of a chopper and to adopt the style of playing with offensive chops that are equivalent to attacks by offensive players. This is exactly how Liang Geliang, a Chinese player in 1970s, played.

I really wonder what he means exactly by 'offensive chops'... Maybe a Geliang video would make it clear?

Quote:
For a defensive player to win the world championships, it is necessary to increase the population of defensive players with various playing styles.

So true. Given the very low number of defensive choppers that play table tennis in general, there are actually quite a lot choppers in the world top (especially for women).


Yes, patience is very important as a defender. You need to be willing to play a long game.

Offensive chops: I suppose he means chops that are fast, low and well-placed.

You've got a greater chance to reach the top of the world being a defender than being an attacker. But... It takes longer.


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Great interview!

May be because so few of His videos available in the youtube, I am in the impression that his style more “modern” than Matsushita Koji.

And learning His near the floor chopping style help develop my game. :)


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I have been too busy with work the past week (no table tennis either because of work and snowstorms) to reply to the comments on the Norio Takashima interview. I will reply in more detail next week, except for one post, but I just want to mention that it is great to read that many people enjoyed the interview.

Steven

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PostPosted: 05 Mar 2015, 07:59 
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Pipsy wrote:

Quote:
It is necessary to throw away the concept of a chopper and to adopt the style of playing with offensive chops that are equivalent to attacks by offensive players. This is exactly how Liang Geliang, a Chinese player in 1970s, played.

I really wonder what he means exactly by 'offensive chops'... Maybe a Geliang video would make it clear?



Liang Geliang would play much closer to the table than modern-day defenders like Joo, and contact the ball at a higher point, as described by Takashima. To be able to deal with the reduced amount of time to prepare for chopping the ball, Liang had a shorter stroke. These chops would come back fast, and give his opponent less time to prepare to attack. As a result, Liang's opponent would often miss these fast chops, or if they push them, he would be close to the table, ready for a power attack.

At the time, I did not find these short chopping strokes appealing to watch, as they lack the grace of chops with long strokes far from the table. But, they certainly were effective. I found it interesting that Takashima wrote that if he were 20 years old he would mix the more typical slower chops with the fast, aggressive chops of Liang.

Shortly after reading the translation of Takashima's interview, a tried doing a drill in which I alternated between longer stroke, slower forehand chops, far from the table, with shorter stroke faster chops near the table. I was pleased that this drill went well, and could quickly appreciate that these fast "offensive" chops are effective.

These ideas are also described in a fascinating interview of Liang Geliang by Kees at viewtopic.php?f=56&t=17666.

I will try some time to find a video showing Liang's chopping technique.

Steven

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Butterfly Joo Se Hyuk
Butterfly Tenergy 80-FX 1.9mm
TSP Curl P1R 1.4-1.7mm
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Returned to table tennis September 2011
Canada National Team Member, 1973-1975
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1972-1987
Brickell Balsa/Birch 3-ply Blade
Yasaka Mark V 1.5mm
Joola Toni Hold AntiTopspin 2.5mm


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PostPosted: 05 Mar 2015, 09:40 
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Takashima wrote:
I would try to be an all-round player that chops with spin variation with inverted rubbers on both forehand and backhand.

With the speed and spin of table-tennis today, it is interesting to hear chopping with inverted on both wings is possible. I know of 2 players who play that style and both do very well. One of them does so with very well disguised chop variation between floaters and very heavy underspin. However, they tend to succumb to power players. Is it feasible for this style in higher levels of table-tennis combat?


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PostPosted: 10 Mar 2015, 06:32 
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Arcturus wrote:
Takashima wrote:
I would try to be an all-round player that chops with spin variation with inverted rubbers on both forehand and backhand.

With the speed and spin of table-tennis today, it is interesting to hear chopping with inverted on both wings is possible. I know of 2 players who play that style and both do very well. One of them does so with very well disguised chop variation between floaters and very heavy underspin. However, they tend to succumb to power players. Is it feasible for this style in higher levels of table-tennis combat?


I saw Takashima play many times in the mid 1970s. He had excellent control chopping with inverted on his backhand against the powerful loops from players such as Surbek and Jonyer. I am confident that if he was 20 years he could handle the best loops of today with inverted on his backhand. However, it is important to keep in mind that Takashima used a slow rubber (Butterfly Plous). Perhaps this suggests that a double inverted chopper with Tenergy 64 on the forehand (like Joo SaeHyuk) and maybe Tackiness Chop/Chop II/Drive on the backhand could do very well, as long as the chopper is highly skilled.

Steven

_________________
Butterfly Joo Se Hyuk
Butterfly Tenergy 80-FX 1.9mm
TSP Curl P1R 1.4-1.7mm
--------------
Returned to table tennis September 2011
Canada National Team Member, 1973-1975
--------------
1972-1987
Brickell Balsa/Birch 3-ply Blade
Yasaka Mark V 1.5mm
Joola Toni Hold AntiTopspin 2.5mm


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PostPosted: 10 Mar 2015, 09:15 
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FH: BTY Tenergy 64 (2.1)
BH: TSP Spectol (1.7)
Why is it we can control such loops with forehand inverted but not backhand?

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[Old Gear/Other Setups] DHS Power G7, Adidas P7, Galaxy Mars v2, TSP Curl P1-R, Friendship 802, Butterfly Innershield, Xiom Omega IV Elite, Stiga Chop n' Drive, Butterfly Tenergy 64, Butterfly Tenergy 80, Butterfly Tenergy 05, Stiga Calibra LT Sound, Stiga Calibra Tour S, Tibhar Grass D.TecS
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My blog: "Learning to play: as a modern defender": http://ooakforum.com/viewtopic.php?f=58&t=22254


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PostPosted: 28 Apr 2015, 12:39 
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igorponger wrote:
Timo Boll's monthly supply from Butterfly would be 24 TNG rubbers in total (Bl and Red), as was once said on Timo blog.
84 grammes each one Rubber pack, no booster.


iasked a german coach close to boll if boll was boosting his rubbers and he started to laugh


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