Friday, January 21, 2022
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Table tennis

Table tennis is an enjoyable and thrilling game. Today, it is not just a game but also
considered a sport that participated in Olympic activities such as the summer Olympics, held in Rio, Brazil. In the video about the 2016 Rio Olympics Table Tennis
Championship, at first, if you watched it without any knowledge regarding the rules, equipment,
and even the players’ strategies on the court, you would have a hard time understanding how
to play this game. At the beginning of the game, it is observable that the players are well-prepared
and trained starting from their attire, body build, etc. On the players’ stance, they bend their
knees to balance themselves well on executing their play; their feet are further apart from
each other and are more stable. Their bodies are slightly bent, and the player’s head always faces the table. Ma Long and Zhang, most of the time, use the handshake grip, which is
suitable for precisely controlled strokes that require less power to get the point. Sometimes, the players
switch into another type of grip, known as the penhold grip. This grip allows their wrist to move freely and creates an advantage on the service. Another advantage of this grip is that the
player does not have a crossover point where he needs to decide on which side will he use the paddle
since both sides are used to play all the strokes. On the strokes of both players, they beautifully
executed the forehand drive and the backhand drive. I remembered some of the most extended rallies of
Ma Long and Zhang wherein they exchanged a powerful backhand and forehand drive. Backhand
stroke is an attacking drive wherein it allows a small amount of topspin. Most of the time,
this backhand drive was done when a player is close to the table, and the opponents return of the
ping pong ball is a bit high. In this case, backhand drives are very effective to get the point against

Your opponent. This backhand drive was also the winning point of Ma Long against Zhang.
Another popular drive-in table tennis is the forehand drive. This forehand drive is an offensive
stroke used to force errors and prefer attacking positions. An effective forehand drive
shot should land the ping pong ball close to the opponent’s baseline. This drive is always
performed with a slight topspin and a flat hit that is very powerful. If we were going to recall the
match of Ma Long and Zhang, I observed that Zhang had many errors, maybe because of the
pressure of playing there. In addition, some of the attacks of Zhang is too eager, and he is having
a hard time positioning for the strokes. Due to the errors of Zhang, Ma Long grabbed the momentum to
execute a powerful and creative stroke which brought him a gold medal in the Rio Olympics 2016.
Overall, I enjoyed watching the game, and it is evident that both players gave their best shot.

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