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 Post subject: Member Interview: Tat
PostPosted: 19 Nov 2011, 05:01 
For your Long A's Only
For your Long A's Only
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Joined: 14 Dec 2007, 14:05
Posts: 4590
Location: USA
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Blade: BBC Doubl Diamond
FH: Prasidha Tokyo Max
Here are my long and boring answers.

1. gdogg1:
a. As a long time reader (but recently poster) I was really taken aback by
your "switch" from long A to the 755. Could you elaborate a little more
about this change?

It is a long story.
Actually, 755 0.6 mm was my first long pip rubber, played with it for
more than a year and really like it. Unfortunately, I think it was the way
I stroke the balls, pips in the middle started to break and fall in three or
four days. Although it cost around $10 a sheet, it was so annoying that
I started searching for more durable pips, and at the same time suitable
to my strokes.
Finally found Prasidha 1615 1.0 mm in Hong Kong, cost about the same
but last a little longer, pip structure not too much difference than 755
0.6 mm, suitable my style. Played with this pip for a year or so,
unfortunately, still loosing pips in a week.
One Thanksgiving in Hong Kong, the manager in Prasidha outlet store
introduced me to Prasidha Long A 1.1 mm, said this pip will last a lot
more and many players were using it. I bought 2 black and 2 red, all
1.1mm. Played for a month without any breaking pips. Ordered more
sheets that can last me a whole life, I still have 12 sheets in the drawer.
What changed my whole game was an email from my brother in law’s
wife last Christmas, she asked what kind of gift I would like for
Christmas because she was tire of guessing. I sent her the
zeropong.com’s web pages of 755 OX and Pogo OX. I got 3 each, all red.
Not wasting any time and materials, played to play both on different
blades with different forehand rubbers and different sponges.
Pogo was ok but lacking the power. Same stroke, percentage of landing
was less than 755 OX or 1.0 mm. My strokes are not depending on
deceptions, I actually hit the ball with the pips, usually pass the
opponents, so the percentage of landing is very important.
I alternate switching between 755 1.0mm, 755 OX, Long A 1.1, Long A
OX, and 1615 1.0 and 1615 OX. After 6 months (I play 5 days a week,
about 4 to 5 hours at a time), the pips for 755 were still standing and
more adapting to my style of LP strokes, or vise versa.
Seriously, pips for 755 are a lot more softer than Long A and easier to
hit and manupunate with. More importantly, I have used both 755 and
Long A to play against many different levels of players, 755 always
came out ahead.
More importantly, I have found two different blades that have the best
effect and control for 755 OX, one is Komann three ply carbon blade, a
gift from a friend, cost about $15. The other is BBC's three ply blade,
double diamond, a gift from Nathanso when I visited him last. With
these two blades, 755 behaved the best.
Now, you know the whole story. :)

2. Haggisv:
a. what made you play LP?

About 30 years ago, I was playing against Bill with 755 OX on his
back hand complimented with great forehand. He didn't do too much
on the LP but I kept missing the balls and so did my friends (you
know them, George, David and Eric, all appeared in my videos). At
that time, I just switched from C-Pen to shake hand and had a tough
time controlling the balls on my backhand, so a natural thing to do is
to buy a sheet of 837 OX and tried it on my friends.

b. How did you pick up your attacking style with LP?

Mostly by nature of necessity. Let me explain: when I was playing LP,
I didn't know OOAK and there was no youtube showing how to play
LP, the only stroke that I know how was chopping.
It is easier to chop when the ball came with pace and top spin, but I
have a tough time playing medium high no spin balls to the
backhand. I am a guy with no patience, I am a guy who would say,
"God, give me patience and I want it now". Chopping no spin balls
gave advantage to Eric and George who knew well of my personality.
That's when I started experimenting hitting with the pips and having
a robot helps. In addition, I can create those no spin balls by
bouncing the ball flat to the wall next to the table and experiment
blade angle to hit balls with LP. Without any helps from a coach, it
took about 10 years to where I am now, attacking virtually any
slower balls.

c. Did you ever have any coaching?

No, all learn by making mistakes.

d. Do you play in any competition, or mainly social at your garage and

Every Thursday night, our club has a round robin tournament where
a lot of players play, I did it for a while to get to around 1850 and
quit playing the round robin about 2 years ago. Several
reasons really, the main one was too many players with tables too
close and no barriers, balls are flying everywhere during play, easy
for me to lost concentration. Second, there was an annoying player
who yell out loud when he won a point, and unfortunately, he was
always right next to my table and least unexpected timing. And third,
waiting too long for your turn.
I did play some tournaments when they were in San Diego but I have
not travel out of my town to compete, really admire some players
who travels across country to compete in a 2 day tournament.
To answer your question, I play for fun and exercise, doesn't matter if
it is in my garage, the club or George's place. If it is no fun anymore,
I'll stop.

e. Would you recommend anyone else to play with LPs like you do?

Definitely, there are so many interesting combinations playing
offensive LP. I am not a good blocker and not a good chopper, I
chopped because I want to attack with my LP if and when the
oppoenent pushes the ball back.

f. What has it been like for you on the forum, first as a member, then as
a spambuster and more recently as a moderator?

I have made many good friends here, sharing and learning so much
about LP as a member in the forum, felt so powerful and exciting as a
spambuster and still learning to be a quality moderator.

3. Anti Don:
a. How do you recover from a BAD loss? Someone you should have and
normally beat?

Well, I normally don't have this kind of problem, :) but if you did, let
it go, try harder the next time, take it easy, it is only a game.

4. Reborn:
a. Do you keep a "visitor log" for the garageto look back at the
esteemed visitors you have had there?

Not necessarily a "visitor log" per se but I did have photos and videos
of forum members playing in "the garage".

b. Do you serve drinks and snacks at "the garage"?

Water is normally the drink available, various fruits if my wife was at
home. Poor Robert didn't have anything, Hookshot and Tommy had
pizza delivered, MNNB had lunch before play time,
BHunter had the best treat, lunches and dinner.

c. Has your game continued to improve lately or has it plateaued?

Feel I am still improving. Well, at least, that was what George said to
me. haha.

d. Which bat are you using as your main bat now?

A $15 Komann three ply with 2 thin carbon layers in between, a gift
from David.

e. Who is the best player ever to play you in "the garage"?

Definitely BHunter.

f. Who is the best player you ever played?

Earl Altos (currently 2360), first in a Legue play 2 years ago and then
friendly games in George's garage.

g. What USATT rating do you think you would be if you played regular

2000 plus or minus.

h. Where is this fountain of youth that you and Hookshot have found?

It is in your subconcious, Reborn. If you think young, you will feel
young and energetic.

5. Rodderz:
a. I saw you hitting with your son once (using hard bats), and you could
hit cross court but when you have invert/LP, 95%of your backhand
attacks go down the line, can you please explain why such a thing

Really, must be an illusion. Actually, I can hit both angles, it is just a
matter of turning the wrist at the last moment. However, my friends,
George and Eric are Cpen players, they tend to stand closer to their
backhand corner, protecting their backhands well, down the line
seemed to be the logical choice, and an occasional cross court did win
more points there.

b. Is there many age group events that you can enter around your area?

Not really, once a year, we have San Diego Senior Olympic and
California Games in our club, where I can play the over 50 and over
60 matches. Other than that, we have to wait for club's
annual in house tournament where I usually play open singles, a
chance to play the higher ups that usually don't have a chance to
play us.

c. What is your best forehand rubber so far?

Haifu BlueWhale II 2.2 black.

d. What is favorite table tennis ball?

Used to be Double Happiness 3 star, now double fish 3 star for
availability from zeropong.

e. Any of your family play?

No, not even one of my close relatives play table tennis, amazing.
However, if my son didn't pick up tennis, he might be interested in
table tennis. Fortunately for him and me, he did pick up tennis
and had a very successful career as a junior and as a college player;
the hard bat games you saw in the garage was all tennis strokes.

f. What country were you born in?

Hong Kong.

g. Do you like Pina Coladas and walking in the sand?
None of the above.

6. Debater:
a. How old were you start playing tt?

Around 12 or so when a bunch of us were messing around in our
village's youth club table, a boy around our age who came from China
showed us how to play. The net was a long bamboo stick
resting on two bricks at each end.

b. You used to post videos of you playing on the forum but have
stopped. Why?

Same players, same game, same strategies, boring for me and you
guys; plus one bad experience is enough.

c. What hobbies do you have now other than table tennis and how much
time each week would you say on average you spend doing them?

Reading books (mostly online nowadays): at least 2 to 3 hours a day.
Gardening, I have at least 64 rose bushes around the edge of my
back and front yards, plus lots of other Chinese and Hawaiian plants
and flowers: 14 to 16 hours a week.
Ballroom dancing: My wife love to dance and since I have to lead, so
I have to learn too. About 10 hours a week.
Day dreaming: most of the time.

d. Is you interest in tt waning?

No, not really. I still love to play, still love the feeling of successful
hitting, and still enjoy the new discovery of useful strokes, both LP
and invert.

e. Why do you use LP?

See Haggisv question 1. And, may be it is because I want to be

f. How much have you spent on table tennis equipment? Is that
declining now?

Ha, I probably spent the most right after I joined OOAK after learning
all the various blades and rubbers. The most I spent at one time was
probably when I spent $ to buy 20 sheets of Long A 1.1 during one
Christmas. Ever since I discovered good blades and rubbers do not
need to be expensive a year ago, I stopped buying new bats. In fact, I
am still using several used invert rubbers that was given to me by an
OOAK friend in our club (Haifu, Appolo, Beijing and Innova). As
mentioned above, my best combo now worth less than US $40.

g.Do you coach any other players, or help them develop? If you do,
what the hardest/most frustrating thing to do when coaching
someone else?

I am not good enough to coach other players, don't want to give them
my bad habits. However, when I play with some of the lower ranked
players, I'll try to point out their obvious problems. If they listen, I'll
elaborate and demonstrate.
Since I am not coaching, there really is no frustrating thing for me to
consider. I have told a friend a hundred times not to move his head
during strokes, he still doesn't listen, what can you do?

h. You posted a video of you playing your son one time. He played
tennis as his main sport. Why didn't he play table tennis like his dad?

A good question and I have never thought about that. Just discussed
with my wife and she reminded me that when my son was growing
up, I was working 24 hours a day, at the peak of my
career, no time for the kids, she was doing all the work of taking care
of both kids. And by the time I have a little more time, he was
already an accomplished junior tennis player.

i. With having a table in your garage, do you have a set routine about
how often you train and what things you do when you train?

Before I joined the club, I used to play against the robot about 2 to 3
hours a day, mostly experimenting various hitting strokes with my
various LPs on different blades. Since returning serves is one of the
most important strokes, I have set up the robot in various positions to
serve short, medium long and long balls and try to return using the
LP. For the past year, I was attacking all serves with LP with pretty
good results especially in doubles where they have no choice but to
serve at that half of the table. Haha.

j. What is it like having a table you can use anytime you want without
having to book a club table or queue up?

Debater, just think of it this way, I have spent fortunate to modify
and beautify my garage just for the sake of playing there anytime, it
is haven. Before I play though, I still have to back up my cars to the
driveway, cover them ( as required by you know who), clean up the
floor before setting up the tables.

k. What one thing would you change about this forum?

That Haggisv stop being too nice. Other than that, his forum is in
perfect shape. Haha.

l. What one rule change would you introduce if you could for table

None really. I play by the rule and I adapt easily. As long as players
don't yell in front of me, I am ok.

m. Have you played any other table tennis forum members outside of
your home state (current home)?

BHunter is first in mind (from Maryland), Hookshot from Idaho,
NMNB from Florida, Nofootwork from New Jersey,
TraditionalTradesman from New York and Robert from Chicago. I think
that's about it.

n. What qualities/graces do you look for in person when they play table
tennis to help you decide if you want to play them?

I hate to play players yelling during points, period. Players with
grumpy faces do not attract me. Players who think they are better
than everybody does not attract me, no matter how good they
are in reality. Players who talk too much during points does not
attract me. Smiley faces always attract my attention. Hey, I just want
to have fun and exercise.

o. What annoys you most about people when they play table tennis?

Yelling when they won a point, talking too much and too loud during
a game, not picking up balls when clearly they know the ball is under
their feet, and all of the above in n.

p. Could you happily stop playing table tennis for even tomorrow?

Not yet, I have too much fun and too much ability and energy to stop
playing, I am virtually the most active and youngest old man in the

q. What table tennis ambitions have you not yet achieved?


r. Which would you chose, wealth, health, happiness or family?

Family, without family, none of the others matter anymore.

7. Der_E:
a. Why Tat's wife allow him to use garage as TTC?

She knew and understood her man works hard and deserved for some
fun especially tt is his favorite sport. And, why do I need my wife's

b. Why is he always smiling?

I love playing, smiling is one of the best way to express satisfaction.

8. Kryptos:
a. Favorite dance?

Used to be Cha Cha, now Quick Steps.

9. Silver:
a. Have you ever had to apply your engineering knowledge in table

Not really, everything is trial and error.

b. Did you read the MSDS?
Not fully understand this stuff.

c. Did you go back to your suppliers and tell them their product was
structurally unsound?

No but I called myself a forensic civil engineer and help reduce my
client's liabilities. Does that answer your question?

Thank you all for reading till the last page, now you know more about me than myself. :)


PostPosted: 19 Nov 2011, 07:55 
Kim Is My Shadow
Kim Is My Shadow
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Joined: 28 Jun 2008, 09:04
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BH: ?
Thanks for the candid answers Tat.

You sound very much like a family man who likes to live life with a smile on his face and a positive outlook on life. Nice to read about someone who doesn't take the game too seriously and plays for fun and health reasons.

Interesting you don't like people who talk too much during a game or who shout. If ever we meet and play and I'm losing I know what tactics to use now :devil: :lol:

PostPosted: 19 Nov 2011, 11:09 
Dark Knight
Dark Knight
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Joined: 13 Dec 2006, 12:34
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Location: Adelaide, AU
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FH: Victas VS > 401
BH: Dr N Troublemaker OX
Wow, great interview! Thanks a lot Tat! :clap: :clap: :clap:

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