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PostPosted: 28 Jul 2020, 23:21 
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LordCope wrote:
Brett Clarke wrote:
First, please give us a bit of context. For example, your opponent seems fairly experienced. Does he normally beat you? Where do you feel you want to go from today? What are you looking to improve?


So my opponent is what in the UK we would call a "band 3 and 4" player - so around top 300 senior men. I've never beaten him in a match, although have got games off him (including today!)

I felt I did "ok" given the conditions (not a lot of room behind the table, and not a lot of room for me to step around my BH). Against this particular player, I find it hard to transition into attack - you'll see often I end up twiddling against him - in this case with a few good results, but also a few rushed or mistimed shots.

I think service return wasn't too bad, but service could be tightened up, with more variety.


Yep. My first thought after watching was, you need to use your forehand attack after creating ample opportunity with the long pips. Your friend can loop the ball fairly high/safely and take too many advantages because of his consistency. Don't worry, I heard what you said about the size of the room and feeling uncomfortable about turning and attacking more with the forehand.

In my view, the best part about long pimples is the opportunities it creates to attack. I've had exactly the same conversation with some world ranked women who use anti and long pips. In your case, I wouldn't care if it's flat hitting/smashing or aggressive forward looping, but I'd be training one of those options. You could get someone to feed you some slower multiball etc and get good at putting the ball away against high loops and loose pushes. I'll bet I can find opportunities in many of your matches, if you posted.

Your serve can certainly improve, if you want to work on it. You need to decide on a couple of serves and work towards using your body to get more spin. I can try to help you with this if you wish. Just email me. Same with your forehand attack.

Your pimple play is solid and it looks effective from here, even though your friend is experienced enough to deal with it. It's good that you can take the ball early and block, as well as use a defensive chop.

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PostPosted: 29 Jul 2020, 00:12 
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Brett Clarke wrote:
Joo Se Kev wrote:
That makes perfect sense, thank you! And I largely agree with that perspective.

Personally, I have found great benefit in building out a "tactical playbook" against various styles and individualized strategies against specific opponents. Not that I'm consulting it between points during a match, but more as a learning tool. The very act of physically writing out ideas and sketching out concepts on paper has a beneficial effect on memory/retention. I've found this helps make my strokes (remembering form cues) and game play a little more "sticky."

As to reading through hundreds of pages on this thread...I'm working on it!!


Kev, I like your posts, so I'll tell you some stuff, just between us. You didn't just come on here to teach me table tennis, so thanks for that.

I've coached against most of the best players in the world with a decent success rate. I give myself zero credit for any player's win because I just don't like that concept. I've been both an international player, and a coach, and I know that all credit goes to the player. Coaches don't like to hear this because they drastically overestimate their impact and it needs to be said. Pro players absolutely hate coaches taking credit too.

The average rally in top 100 goes for 3.6 hits (including serve). I've counted many matches. Now let's assume I'm coaching against Harimoto, for example. The serve from my player is totally controllable, and placement is super important. This needs to be discussed and understood or else your team is going down hard. Harimoto is going to try to banana flick every serve, so the serve needs to be short and very wide to the forehand, mixed in with some variations. A good variation against Harimoto is very short and wide to the backhand (the Chinese use this against him) or long to middle/backhand. Again, this situation is very controllable and coachable.

When it comes to receiving against Harimoto, you can't use regular returning which is short to forehand. His forehand flick is too strong, so the return needs to be more to the middle. If he starts to use the banana (less likely than you think) the player needs to push long to his middle. When he is nervous, Harimoto accidentally serves long and these must be heavily attacked to his middle/forehand to put him into a cycle of nervousness.

During rallies, things become very difficult to control and this opens the door for horrible "coaching" mistakes, because you need only one idea. Let's say the idea here is, always attack to the middle and forehand. Do this as much as you can.

The above ends the discussion because we have accounted for the 3.6 hits. If a rally goes any longer, it will come down to variance and even luck. Hopefully my player can hit the middle forehand with most attacks.

The biggest mistakes that coaches make is not understanding what is controllable and how long a rally really goes for. For example, if you say that this guy has a bad backhand, so play everything to his backhand, you are probably a 1600 coach. The serve is the most controllable, followed by the return and then a little direction for attacking during a point.

I bench coached this win against Harimoto last year (all credit to Sathiyan, of course). At least you may believe that I'm not a totally incompetent tt coach and you can reconcile everything with the above mentioned advice that I gave to the player.



Was this the most fun post of the entire thread?


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PostPosted: 29 Jul 2020, 00:17 
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Brett Clarke wrote:

In my view, the best part about long pimples is the opportunities it creates to attack.


Absolutely - and against lesser players this is my route one to success. I just find this guy harder to attack against. Here are some of the highlights where I did manage to get an attack in:


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PostPosted: 29 Jul 2020, 00:37 
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LC, I think since this thread started in 2015 your play has improved as much as the other core posters put together. NL, me, Dr P, Big D, wilkinru all play pretty much the same way only a little better, judging by the last videos I have seen. Your game is utterly tranformed and unrecognizable. It must be all the ejing you do, it's working!

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PostPosted: 29 Jul 2020, 00:41 
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BRS wrote:
LC, I think since this thread started in 2015 your play has improved as much as the other core posters put together. NL, me, Dr P, Big D, wilkinru all play pretty much the same way only a little better, judging by the last videos I have seen. Your game is utterly tranformed and unrecognizable. It must be all the ejing you do, it's working!


Aww thanks! To be fair I was absolutely rubbish, and you were all tolerably good!

Evidence:



Actually I'm going to play with this chap tomorrow.

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PostPosted: 29 Jul 2020, 01:06 
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Hrm... I don't seem to be able to add the times and have them embed, so you'll just need to click on the links:

And from the archives: NL: vs so_devo:

https://youtu.be/bIjL2wrmI8o?t=259

and NL vs me:

https://youtu.be/bIjL2wrmI8o?t=880

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PostPosted: 29 Jul 2020, 01:24 
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LordCope wrote:
Brett Clarke wrote:

In my view, the best part about long pimples is the opportunities it creates to attack.


Absolutely - and against lesser players this is my route one to success. I just find this guy harder to attack against. Here are some of the highlights where I did manage to get an attack in:



Awesome play :clap:

I tell players that if they've used the long pips 3 times in a row, it's too many because they have missed an the opportunity to attack.

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PostPosted: 29 Jul 2020, 01:34 
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Brett Clarke wrote:
I tell players that if they've used the long pips 3 times in a row, it's too many because they have missed an the opportunity to attack.


I sometimes play conditional games where if I hit three LP shots in a row, I automatically lose the point, to reinforce this idea.

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PostPosted: 29 Jul 2020, 01:37 
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Thought it might be an interesting idea to share me playing against righty’s for the first time since beating the lefty’s 11 0. Had a hard time in the beginning to get focused so there were a few restarts

https://youtu.be/ty_H8sFdeNU


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PostPosted: 29 Jul 2020, 01:55 
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big d wrote:
Thought it might be an interesting idea to share me playing against righty’s for the first time since beating the lefty’s 11 0. Had a hard time in the beginning to get focused so there were a few restarts

https://youtu.be/ty_H8sFdeNU


It's quite amazing Dan. I've got a fair idea of how much time it take to get there.

I used to restart, but not anymore. I want to put myself into difficult situations where I have to make comebacks.

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PostPosted: 29 Jul 2020, 02:06 
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BRS wrote:
LC, I think since this thread started in 2015 your play has improved as much as the other core posters put together. NL, me, Dr P, Big D, wilkinru all play pretty much the same way only a little better, judging by the last videos I have seen. Your game is utterly tranformed and unrecognizable. It must be all the ejing you do, it's working!


It's a nice post. It's wonderful to see LC out there still moving forward and happy.

Improvement is an interesting thing and I'll give you another perspective. It's quite amazing that you all still play and seem to enjoy the game. In my mind, that's a monstrous win.

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PostPosted: 29 Jul 2020, 02:27 
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I became a relatively good national player in about 1991. Then I really stopped playing in 2008 after coming back to play in a local league.

Throughout these 17 years of senior play, I'm not really sure if I improved. I honestly don't know. For some of the years I played well, some were a joke, and in many of the years I just coached and then tried to compete. One year I drove a truck for 10 hours per day and played tt only once. I don't know what you'd call that?

If I could do it all again, I'd definitely do it differently. But it's crazy because it'd be unfair to go back with 2020 knowledge to coach in 1991 or even 1983 when I started. The game has changed and I've got unfair advantages. I now study the game for many hours per week with amazing technology and I've had access to international tournaments and training halls.

Do I have a point? I probably didn't improve over 17 years!

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PostPosted: 29 Jul 2020, 03:03 
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Brett Clarke wrote:
I became a relatively good national player in about 1991. Then I really stopped playing in 2008 after coming back to play in a local league.

Throughout these 17 years of senior play, I'm not really sure if I improved. I honestly don't know. For some of the years I played well, some were a joke, and in many of the years I just coached and then tried to compete. One year I drove a truck for 10 hours per day and played tt only once. I don't know what you'd call that?

If I could do it all again, I'd definitely do it differently. But it's crazy because it'd be unfair to go back with 2020 knowledge to coach in 1991 or even 1983 when I started. The game has changed and I've got unfair advantages. I now study the game for many hours per week with amazing technology and I've had access to international tournaments and training halls.

Do I have a point? I probably didn't improve over 17 years!



You probably did improve in some ways. Your understanding of the game probably got better. All that trucking must’ve given you a lot of time to think


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PostPosted: 29 Jul 2020, 03:33 
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big d wrote:
Brett Clarke wrote:
I became a relatively good national player in about 1991. Then I really stopped playing in 2008 after coming back to play in a local league.

Throughout these 17 years of senior play, I'm not really sure if I improved. I honestly don't know. For some of the years I played well, some were a joke, and in many of the years I just coached and then tried to compete. One year I drove a truck for 10 hours per day and played tt only once. I don't know what you'd call that?

If I could do it all again, I'd definitely do it differently. But it's crazy because it'd be unfair to go back with 2020 knowledge to coach in 1991 or even 1983 when I started. The game has changed and I've got unfair advantages. I now study the game for many hours per week with amazing technology and I've had access to international tournaments and training halls.

Do I have a point? I probably didn't improve over 17 years!



You probably did improve in some ways. Your understanding of the game probably got better. All that trucking must’ve given you a lot of time to think


If it was long-haul trucking across Australia there would def be lots of time to think. Thoughts would probably come back to:

"This place looks like the surface of F*** ing Mars, man. What am i doing here?"

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PostPosted: 29 Jul 2020, 03:53 
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Brett Clarke wrote:
Do I have a point? I probably didn't improve over 17 years!


Well it's not easy to improve from the level of good national player. Clearly you improved a lot between 1983 - 1991, in spite of everything you knew about TT during that time being either wrong or non-existent.

Most of us are where you were in 1991, about eight years in, except some of us are a hell of a lot older. I started playing Feb 2012 so I'm right there. We may know 2020 TT wisdom and secrets, but none of us is anywhere near being a lousy national player, or even top 100 in our state probably. Why is that?

It is nice to still enjoy the game and practicing despite the evident lack of improvement. Without table tennis I would lose what is left of my mind and have no friends. So even though I continue to suck at it with no end in sight, overall it's still a plus.

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