Tibhar have hit it for ‘six’ this summer!
Tibhar have launched two great new Evolution rubbers for the coming season. The new EL-S and FX-S versions make it six great variations in the super popular Evolution range!
The new high grip PRO rubber sheet is extra grippy and incorporates a special tuned pimple geometry beneath the rubber surface. EL-S features an elastic medium hard RED POWER 45° sponge which will suit advanced and professional players alike.
The result is sensational touch and amazing spin charged dynamism for powerful looping and varied topspin play both at the table and at mid distance.
FX-S generates flexible spin with plenty of gears, allowing you to vary the amount of topspin, loop and chop you impart with ease.
The mid soft 40° sponge is forgiving, and the combination is perfect for attacking players who generate serious spin but require the delicacy of touch that softer sponges can offer.
To celebrate Bribar’s 35 years in business – buy any 2 sheets from the Evolution range for only £36.99 each Evolution rubbersPosted on 5th August 2016
Evolution MX-P 50 HARD (50°) TABLE TENNIS RUBBER
The latest development in the Tibhar series of rubbers will be available to you from the end of March. Take advantage of our special introductory offer.
The rubber surface of the MX-P 50 HARD version is identical to the rubber surface of the already familiar Evolution MX-P (47.5°). The Pro Tension rubber sheet gives excellent sensation and extended ball contact time to increase spin generation. The Tibhar professional players have already had this high-performance harder sponge available to them and due to the new generation of plastic balls it is now being made available for all players.
The Tibhar professional players have the choice between fine-pored and open-pored sponges, currently the MX-P (47.5°) is open pored but the new MX-P50 Hard is being released with the fine-pored variation and is 50° hard. This fine pored version plays noticeably differently with an increased forward and direct motion yet retains the superb spin and feel characteristics of MX-P.
If you play a power loop game try MX-P50 Hard and take your game to new heights of speed and high spin generation. Direct, powerful and dominating but with sensitivity of touch in passive situations.Posted on 10th April 2019
TIBHAR EVOLUTION MX-P (MAX POWER) TABLE TENNIS RUBBER
The most dynamic and fastest version of the Evolution family, due to the pimple geometry the rubber is more flexible, giving greater energy to attacking balls. The RED POWER sponge is a hard 46–48°, and makes no concession in terms of speed or spin. The ball contact time is extended by the PRO-TENSION rubber giving excellent sensation and is chosen by powerful loop layers.
Paul Drinkhall said “For speed MX-P has to be king but for spin it is also excellent. It’s very fast, and suits the attacking player who likes to take the ball early at the table or from mid distance and play hard, attacking shots with a huge amount of spin. The rubber is not so quick that it lacks any feeling or control – the balance is excellent”.
To sum up – If you like to topspin the ball strongly from both wings, open up from a backspin push or chop ball with heavy topspin, attack on the third or fifth ball aggressively, loop with heavy spin and speed from mid distance or block quickly but with control, then MX-P is the perfect choice.Posted on 16th March 2018
Tibhar Evolution EL-S (Elastic Spin) Table Tennis Rubber
Tibhar rubber development is second to none.
New Evolution EL-S has been developed for top players who require extra spin when attacking.
The new high grip PRO rubber sheet is extra grippy and incorporates a special tuned pimple geometry beneath the rubber surface.
EL-S features an elastic medium hard RED POWER 45° sponge which will suit advanced and professional players alike.
The result is sensational touch and amazing spin charged dynamism for powerful looping and varied topspin play both at the table and at mid distance.
When carrying out trial testing, Paul Drinkhall said, “I’m amazing at the spin you can generate – this is a rubber perfect for serious players through to professionals like myself”.Posted on
TIBHAR Evolution EL-P (Elastic Power) Table Tennis Rubber
Evolution EL-P is the most elastic of the range and offers a great balance to play precise and powerful strokes both at mid distance and at the table.
The 42–44° medium sponge offers a good balance of feel and bounce and is perfect for attacking topspin players who want an emphasis on consistent controlled spin and power.
The ball contact is terrific and you can play push, block and topspin strokes with confidence.
The arc is higher than MX-P and MX-S versions and when looping and top spinning from mid distance feels totally safe with a big forgiving sweet spot.
When testing, Paul Drinkhall said “When I’m top spinning the ball, the contact feels great and the rubber feels quick .
I feel I can either do a safe steady block, a soft block or even a hard punch block, from my opponents top spin with ease, and again it is the contact that really stands out – the rubber offers really good feeling.
If I try to re-loop close to the table from my opponents attacking shot, the rubber is again very ‘forgiving’ – I do not need perfect contact every time to generate a good return”.
Posted on 15th February 2018
TIBHAR Evolution FX-P (Flex Power) Table Tennis Rubber
Still adopting the PRO-TENSION surface and RED POWER sponge, Evolution FX-P is the most flexible and softest of the range. An attacking rubber but with wonderful control and feel in all playing situations.Soft topspins and counter topspin rallies can be played without concern, and the kick will create real problems for your opponent. If you play an attacking game with touch close to the table you will be delighted by the fine tuning of this rubber, and the performance when combined with the soft 39-41° sponge. Immense spin, super sound, amazing catapult effect but most importantly great control.Posted on
TIBHAR Evolution MX-S (Max Spin) Table Tennis Rubber
More forgiving than the MX-P version but still adopting full ‘pro player’ properties.
Retaining the RED POWER 46–48° sponge, but the high friction rubber surface and new pimple geometry beneath the rubber surface, gives an expanded ball contact time.
The result is a spin geared dynamic version of Evolution with great ball feeling.
The emphasis from MX-S is on spin, spin and more spin, yet still retaining stability and touch with power.
Controlled blocking and looping and return of serve feel easy; spin loaded short serves can be performed with confidence, and seem even more effective when using the new plastic ball!
MX-S has already been selected by many leading Bundesliga players. A great choice for all attacking players who prefer a medium hard sponge, but require bags of spin.
Tibhar Evolution FX-S (Flex Spin) Table Tennis Rubber
Evolution FX-S is the younger sibling of EL-S and incorporates the same new extra elastic but mega grippy PRO top sheet.
FX-S generates flexible spin with plenty of gears, allowing you to vary the amount of topspin, loop and chop you impart with ease.
The mid soft 40° sponge is forgiving, and the combination is perfect for attacking players who generate serious spin but require the delicacy of touch that softer spongers can offer.Posted on
DER-MATERIALSPEZIALIST Kamikaze Table Tennis Rubber
A revolutionary development in long pimples designed for the new plastic ball.
Long and wide pimples with wide spacing produce a very flat ball trajectory and sinking effect.
Relatively fast with ‘bouncing effect’ which causes wobbly trajectories but also offers great control when blocking and counter hitting and is very insensitive to incoming spin.
When attacking, the rubber creates a catapult effect that is unpredictable for the opponent and is strengthened by the fact that the rubber itself produces spin.Posted on 31st July 2018
|EXTREME CATAPULT EFFECT|
|Tibhar||Evolution MX-P||33||Germany||1.7, 2.0, 2.2||*||*||115||116||68||No|
|Joola||Rhyzm-P||24||Germany||1.8, 2.0, Max||*||*||116||112||69||No|
|Tibhar||Evolution EL- S||32||Germany||1.7, 2.0, Max||*||*||118||110||70||No|
|Joola||Samba 27||23||Japan||1.8, 2.0, Max||*||*||116||109||71||No|
|Victas||V>15 Extra||44||G & J||2.0, Max||*||*||113||114||67||No|
|Joola||Rhyzm Original||23||Germany||2.0, Max||*||*||111||116||68||No|
|Tibhar||Evolution MX-S||33||Germany||1.7, 2.0, Max||*||*||117||113||69||No|
|Victas||V>01||45||G & J||2.0, Max||*||*||112||112||68||No|
|Joola||X-plode||28||Germany||1.8, 2.0, Max||*||*||106||114||68||No|
|Stiga||Calibra Tour H||51||Japan||2.1||*||*||111||112||67||No|
|POWER CATAPULT EFFECT|
|Joola||Rhyzm-Tech||24||Germany||1.8, 2.0, Max||*||*||117||106||70||No|
|Tibhar||Evolution EL-P||34||Germany||1.7, 2.0, 2.2||*||*||115||108||70||No|
|TSP||Regalis Red||43||Japan||2.0, Max||*||*||112||102||74||No|
|Joola||Rhyzm 425||23||Germany||2.0, Max||*||*||112||107||72||No|
|Tibhar||Evolution FX-P||34||Germany||1.7, 2.0, 2.2||*||*||115||103||73||No|
|Tibhar||Nimbus Delta V||36||Germany||2.0, Max||*||*||112||102||71||No|
|TSP||Ventus Speed||43||Japan||2.0, Max||*||*||109||102||71||No|
|Tibhar||5Q VIP||37||Japan||1.9, 2.1||*||*||112||104||72||No|
|ALLROUND CATAPULT EFFECT|
|Joola||Samba Tech||23||Germany||1.8, 2.0, Max||*||*||114||98||80||No|
|Tibhar||Evolution FX-S||34||Germany||1.7, 2.0, Max||*||*||118||100||74||No|
|Joola||Samba 19||23||Japan||1.8, 2.0, Max||*||*||114||101||75||No|
|Tibhar||Nimbus Delta S||36||Germany||2.0, Max||*||*||112||99||78||No|
|Joola||Energy X-Tra||27||Germany||1.8, 2.0, Max||*||*||113||96||80||No|
|Tibhar||Aurus||35||Germany||1.7, 1.9, 2.1||*||*||109||99||75||No|
|TSP||Regalis Blue||43||Japan||2.0, Max||*||*||112||96||80||No|
|Double Happiness||Hurricane 8||60||China||2.2||*||*||116||93||79||C|
|Joola||Energy||27||Germany||1.8, 2.0, Max||*||*||108||102||76||No|
|Double Happiness||Tin Arc 5||60||China||2.1||*||*||114||99||77||No|
|Tibhar||Quantum S||37||Germany||2.0, Max||*||*||116||98||76||No|
|Butterfly||Tenergy 05-FX||49||Japan||1.9, 2.1||*||*||106||100||73||No|
|Donic||Bluefire JP01||54||Germany||2.0, Max||*||*||108||99||73||No|
|CONTROL CATAPULT EFFECT|
|Joola||Energy 325 Soft||27||Germany||1.8, 2.0, Max||*||*||113||92||88||No|
|Tibhar||Nimbus Sound||37||Germany||1.8, 2.0, Max||*||*||106||88||88||No|
|Joola||Rhyzm 375||23||Germany||2.0, Max||*||*||112||96||80||No|
|Tibhar||Aurus Sound||35||Germany||1.7, 1.9, 2.1||*||*||109||94||83||No|
|Victas||VS>402 Double Extra||45||G & J||1.8, 2.0||*||*||111||85||85||No|
|Tibhar||Nimbus Soft||37||Germany||2.0, Max||*||*||104||96||84||No|
|Victas||VS>401||44||G & J||1.5, 2.0||*||*||111||75||94||No|
|Joola||X-plode Sensitive||28||Germany||1.8, 2.0, Max||*||*||109||96||82||No|
|Double Happiness||Neo Skyline 3||53||China||2.15||*||*||110||80||89||C|
|Double Happiness||Skyline 3-60 Soft||53||China||2.1||*||*||108||78||90||C|
|Victas||VS>402 Limber||44||G & J||1.8, 2.0||*||*||109||80||90||No|
|Double Happiness||Hurricane 3-50||52||China||2.1||*||*||112||87||86||C|
|Imperial||Cyber Tacky Factory Tuned||55||China||2.1||*||*||107||84||86||C|
|Double Happiness||Neo Hurricane 3||53||China||2.1||*||*||113||83||89||C|
|Donic||Acuda Blue P3||54||Germany||Max||*||*||112||93||85||No|
|Stiga||Calibra LT Sound||51||Japan||Max||*||*||108||93||80||No|
|Joola||Mambo H||30||Japan||1.8, 2.0, Max||*||*||103||85||94||No|
|Friendship||Focus III Snipe||56||China||2.1||*||*||104||89||86||C|
|Winning||Super 729 TSS||56||China||2.0||*||*||103||86||89||C|
|Friendship||RITC 2000 Tack Speed||56||China||1.5, 2.0||*||*||100||79||92||C|
|Yinhe||Moon Max Tense||56||China||2.0||*||*||106||88||87||C|
|Friendship||729-08 Energy Storage||55||China||2.1||*||*||106||87||87||C|
|Yasaka||Mark V||48||Japan||1.5, 2.0, Max||*||*||103||95||80||No|
|Stiga||Mendo||50||Japan||1.5, 2.0, Max||*||*||99||85||89||J|
|TRADITIONAL ALLROUND CONTROL|
|Tibhar||Speedy Spin||38||Japan||1.5, 2.0||*||*||99||78||98||No|
|TSP||Triple Spin||42||Japan||1.5, 2.0||*||*||103||70||102||J|
|Tibhar||Vari Spin d Tec S||38||Japan||1.5, 2.0||*||*||102||66||101||No|
|Tibhar||Vari Spin||38||Japan||1.5, 2.0||*||*||102||60||104||No|
|Stiga||Chop & Drive||50||Japan||1.5, 1.8||*||*||102||62||102||No|
|S & T||Secret Flow||48||Germany||1.5, 2.0||*||*||103||52||102||No|
|Stiga||Neos Tacky||50||Japan||1.8, 2.0, Max||*||*||100||80||96||J|
|Butterfly||Sriver L||49||Japan||1.5, 2.0, Max||*||*||95||80||95||No|
|Butterfly||Tackiness Drive||49||Japan||1.5, 2.1||*||*||99||55||100||J|
|Joola||4 All||30||Japan||1.5, 1.8||*||*||84||50||95||No|
|STICKY ALLROUND CONTROL|
|Friendship||Geospin Tacky||57||China||1.5, 2.0||*||*||104||62||104||C|
|Friendship||729 Super Soft||58||China||1.5, 2.0||*||*||103||55||104||C|
|Double Happiness||Hurricane 2||52||China||2.1||*||*||103||70||100||C|
|Yinhe||9000 Techno||57||China||1.5, 2.0||*||*||104||60||102||C|
|Double Happiness||Hurricane 3||52||China||2.1||*||*||105||65||102||C|
|Yinhe||9000 Electro||58||China||1.5, 2.0||*||*||104||56||103||C|
|Friendship||729 FX Super||58||China||1.5, 2.0||*||*||102||50||100||C|
|Globe||999 T Soft||57||China||2.0||*||*||106||60||104||C|
|Imperial||Cyber Tacky Japan Soft||57||China||2.1||*||*||104||65||102||C|
|Blutenkirsche||868 China Soft||57||China||1.5||*||*||104||53||103||C|
|Imperial||China Classic Special||57||China||1.5, 2.0||*||*||104||50||102||C|
|Tibhar||Super Defence 40||39||Japan||0.5, 0.9, 1.3, 1.5, 1.9||*||*||105||45||114||J|
|TSP||Triple Spin Chop||42||Japan||1.0||*||*||105||38||115||J|
|Joola||Topspin Chopper||30||Japan||1.2, 1.5, 1.8, 2.0||*||*||105||40||115||J|
|DMS||Killing Defender Soft||47||Germany||1.0, 1.6||*||*||105||41||115||No|
|Stiga||Chop & Drive||50||Japan||1.1||*||*||104||49||114||No|
|Yinhe||9000 Electro Defence||58||China||0.6, 0.8||*||*||105||33||115||C|
|Friendship||729 Super Soft Defence||58||China||1.0||*||*||105||35||115||C|
|Friendship||729 FX Super Defence||58||China||1.0||*||*||104||38||110||C|
|Neubauer||Special Defence||54||Japan||1.0, 1.5||*||*||104||40||115||J|
|Butterfly||Tackiness Chop||49||Japan||1.1, 1.5, 1.9||*||*||105||40||113||J|
|Joola||Toni Hold Original Anti||31||Japan||1.5, Max||*||*||25||25-40||115||No|
|DMS||Best Anti Defence||46||Germany||1.1, 1.5||*||*||23||28||115||No|
|Giant Dragon||Soft Anti||58||China||1.5||*||*||30||40||110||No|
|DMS||Master Anti||46||Germany||1.5, 2.0||*||*||30||45||112||No|
|Neubauer||Anti Special||54||Germany||1.2, 1.6||*||*||30||50||108||No|
|Stiga||Energy Absorber||50||Japan||1.6, 2.0||*||30||55||108||No|
|CATAPULT SHORT PIMPLES|
|Joola||Express Ultra||31||Japan||2.0, Max||*||*||55||104||70||No|
|Tibhar||Speedy Soft D.Tecs||39||Japan||1.5, 2.0||*||*||62||94||73||No|
|Joola||Tango Ultra||31||Germany||1.8, 2.0, Max||*||*||60||92||75||No|
|Victas||VO>101||45||G & J||2.0, Max||*||*||58||102||72||No|
|Victas||VLB>301||45||G & J||1.6, 2.0||*||*||62||88||78||No|
|TSP||Spectol Red||40||Japan||2.0, Max||*||*||60||100||71||No|
|TRADITIONAL SHORT PIMPLES|
|Tibhar||Speedy Soft||39||Japan||1.5, 2.0||*||*||55||92||88||No|
|TSP||Super Spin Pips||41||Japan||1.5, 2.0||*||*||50||80||90||No|
|Dingo Swiss||Ding Yi||48||China||1.5, 2.0||*||*||64||65||95||No|
|TSP||Spin Magic||31||Japan||1.5, 1.8, 2.1||*||*||64||70||95||No|
|TSP||Super Spin Pips Chop 2||39||Japan||0.5, 1.5||*||*||60||55||95||No|
|Winning||NP8 Techno||59||China||1.5, 2.0||*||*||50||82||92||No|
|Neubauer||Tornado Ultra||54||Japan||1.5, 2.0||*||*||58||80||90||No|
|Neubauer||Diamant||54||Japan||1.2, 1.5, 2.0||*||*||55||80||80||No|
|LONG FAST EFFECT PIMPLES||EFFECT||SPEED||CONTROL|
|Joola||Badman Reloaded||31||Japan||Ox, 1.3||*||*||70||65||68||No|
|Tibhar||Grass D TecS||39||Japan||Ox, 0.5, 0.9 1.2, 1.6||*||*||70||60||70||No|
|TSP||Curl P-H||40||Japan||Ox, 0.5, 1.0||*||*||62||60||70||No|
|Giant Dragon||Attack Long||60||China||Ox||*||*||60||62||68||No|
|Dawei||388 D1 Quatro||60||China||0.5||*||*||63||60||65||No|
|LONG CLASSIC EFFECT PIMPLES||EFFECT||SPEED||CONTROL|
|TSP||Curl P1R||40||Japan||Ox, 0.5, 1.0||*||*||68||42||70||No|
|Dingo Swiss||Zik Zak||48||China||Ox, 0.6||*||*||70||44||70||No|
|Tibhar||Grass||39||Japan||Ox, 1.0, 1.5, 2.0||*||*||65||40||70||No|
|Yinhe||Qing Soft||60||China||Ox, 0.5||*||*||58||57||67||No|
|Double Happiness||Cloud & Fog 3||53||China||1.0||*||*||62||45||65||No|
|Yinhe||Bend 955||60||China||Ox, 0.8, 1.0||*||*||65||50||65||Bo|
|Friendship||755 Mystery III||60||China||0.8||*||*||66||48||60||No|
|LONG PIMPLES SLOW EFFECT||EFFECT||SPEED||CONTROL|
|S & T||Hellfire||48||Germany||Ox, 0.9||*||*||75||40||71||No|
|Air||Up, Up, Up, Up||48||China||Ox, 1.0||*||70||38||72||No|
|Joola||Octopus||31||Japan||Ox, 0.5, 1.0||*||*||70||40||70||No|
|TSP||Curl P4 Chop||40||Japan||Ox, 1.0, 1.5||*||*||70||38||72||No|
|S & T||Easy P||48||Germany||Ox, 0.5||*||*||68||37||73||No|
|Hallmark||Friction Special 2||54||China||Ox||*||*||68||38||68||No|
All of the specifications in this catalogue are as tested by BRIBAR TABLE TENNIS and do not necessarily coincide with those produced by the manufacturers.Posted on 11th August 2015
Years of research and development have resulted in a revolutionary surface with a new rubber mixture which increases ball contact and energy transfer. The most remarkable point of VIP is the further enhancement of the 45 degree sponge, where the combination of open pore and sponge elasticity in partnership with the tensioned rubber surface result in a high spin, high speed tool.
Perfect for spin powered attacking players, who require optimal arc (ball curve) on their shots but still with speed and control. The high energy transfer and SPI (playing sensation control) permit a wide range of gears in all stroke play and also suit the new poly ball.
Continuing the rapid evolution of Chinese rubbers,Friendship have produced a new lightweight rubber designed for the European market.
The soft 40° sponge permits excellent feeling.
Combined with the highly elastic rubber surface the rubber suits spin attack players giving optimum effect to any loop.Posted on 6th July 2010
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National Championships Highlights Competition and 30% off all Mizuno’s!
TIBHAR Drinkhall Offers, Grantham College TT Academy and Next-gen Players!
National’s ‘Spot the Ball’ Competition, Tibhar Sale & Top Edge/Gertsen TT Training Camp
January Issue No 2
January Clearance Sale, Chinese New Year and Club Focus…
January Issue No 1
January Clearance Sale, Play it Like Paul! and New Club Focus…
December Issue No 2
Super Stocking fillers, Christmas Bats and New Club Focus…
December Issue No 1
Christmas Gift Ideas, New Training Camps and Latest Offers…
November Issue No 2
TIBHAR Special Edition – Black Friday, Christmas Ideas & Player News!
November Issue No 1
Big Savings on Bats, Paul’s new club & E-Gift Vouchers
October Issue No 1
Latest Special Offers, Paul’s Pro Tips & Training Opportunity!
September Issue No 2
Paul Drinkhall’s latest Pro Tips, Next Gen Players & New Season Kit!
September Issue No 1
Special Offers – Celebrate our 35 Year Anniversary!
August Issue No 4
New Catalogue, Trainer Balls, Play it Like Paul and Club Focus Page!
August Issue No 3
New Mizuno’s, Signature Bats, New Balls & Summer Madness Continues!
August Issue No 2
Summer Clearance Madness and Brand New Kit!
August Issue No 1
Playing Equipment SPECIAL!!
Gear up for the new season with Tibhar!
Chris Doran Signs, Combo Bat Heaven & Training Camps.
Paul is a four time National singles Champion and Commonwealth Gold Medal winner from Glasgow 2014, as well as being Great Britain’s sole representative in the London 2012 Olympics where he reached the last 32 of the Men’s Singles competition.
The 2014/2015 season has been Paul’s best ever to date – Paul became the first English player in nearly twenty years to win an ITTF World Tour event following victory in the GAC Group Spanish Open, before recording victories over both the European No.1 and No.2 ranked players Dimitrij Ovtcharov (World Rank 5) and Marcos Freitas (World Rank 9) on his way to the final or the GAC Group ITTF World Tour Russian Open.
Paul is a former triple European Youth Champion and current UK No.1 and holds a world ranking of 37, his highest being No.33 in January 2015.
TIBHAR is a leading brand around the world within table tennis and is renowned for producing top quality rubbers and blades along with a first class range of tables, textiles and accessories. Some of their other world class athletes include Vladimir Samsonov (BLR) and Chen Chien-An (TPE).
Paul commented: ‘I’m really happy to be a member of the Bribar Table Tennis and TIBHAR families. At this stage in my career it’s important I have the support of table tennis experts and that I’m playing with the very best equipment. In the UK everyone knows Bribar Table Tennis and the support they provide to their customers, so it’s great to be in partnership with them. TIBHAR equipment is absolutely outstanding– the Evolution rubbers are the absolute perfect choice for my game, and I would recommend them to anybody who wants to play an attacking game based on power, spin and precision’.
Barry Chapman, Managing Director of Bribar Table Tennis, the main UK agents for Tibhar, commented:
“We are delighted that Paul has joined Bribar and Tibhar at a time when he is playing at his best. As well as being an extremely talented player he is very personable and friendly and is about to enter a new phase of his life. He and Jo are expecting their first child in a few months time, and this has given him renewed focus. Paul is very enthusiastic about our plans for the future. More than anything else, I think he is looking forward to working within the family environment that Bribar and Tibhar offer.”
This week, we welcome a good friend of Bribar, Paul Drinkhall to our blog spot. Paul’s been at the top of his game for several years, and he gives us some valuable insight into some of his key wins (and losses)! We hope you enjoy the interview – like most of us, Paul’s looking forward to hitting a small white ball again!
What’s been happening over the last couple of months?
It’s been a busy time, and as usual I’ve been travelling away from home training and competing. In February I had a good run in the Portuguese Open, reaching the Quarter Finals and losing to the eventual winner Qui Dang from Germany 4-2. I beat an up-and-coming Chinese player before losing to my old team-mate Emmanuel Lebesson in the last 64 of the Qatar Open, which was disappointing but I reached the Final of the Men’s Doubles with Pitch (Liam Pitchford) which was brilliant. Pitch and I retained our Men’s Doubles titles at the English National Championships, and I lost in the final to Pitch 4-2 in a real tussle of a match.
Can you give us some background into your early years in the sport?
I’ve been around a long time! I started when I was seven, and I was already training properly at eight. My brother Bryn played also, and I think having an older brother helped me so much as I was always striving to beat him, so that brought me on quickly. I’ll have been playing four nights a week for about two, maybe three hours at that point from 9 onwards. I won the National under 10s and 11s when I was 10, and only just missed out in the final of the Under 12s; by that point I’d been recognised by the England set up and things went from there really, I think I was fortunate to start at a good time when there was money being put into an England type of development squad and other things, and then the start of the National Academy in Nottingham. Being in Nottingham, gave me the opportunity to train against the best players in my age group for 3 hours per day after school and that’s where I met the England coach at the time from China, Jia-Yi Liu. I owe a lot to Jia-Yi, during this time things went very well for me as it helped me achieve a lot in my Junior and Cadet career both domestically and internationally.
Are there any wins or matches over the course of your career so far that are particularly memorable?
Of course! Winning the European youth titles as both a Cadet and Junior was special at the time, as it hadn’t been won by an English player for so many years. In my last year as a Junior I actually won the singles, doubles and mixed doubles. My first senior singles National title in 2007 whilst I was still a second year junior, beating Alex Perry in the final. Winning a Commonwealth Gold Medal with my wife Joanna in the mixed doubles, and winning Commonwealth Gold with Liam in the Men’s Doubles. Oh, and not forgetting winning a bronze medal at the World Team Championships, beating France in the Quarter Finals was a huge match, I beat Emmanuel Lebesson in the deciding game to send us through; it was a brilliant feeling for me and the team. Also my two ITTF World Tour titles, I think the only other English player to win one was Carl Prean back in the mid-90s, I won in Spain in 2014 and in Serbia in May this year – in 2014 I got to the final of the Russian Open, so I qualified for the ITTF World Tour Grand Finals in Bangkok that year.
Are there any losses that for whatever reason have disappointed you more than most?
When I was 16 years old I was doing very well as a junior and starting to play well against some top senior players too – I was 10-9 up in the 7th game against Ryu Seung Min, who at the time was the Olympic Champion and inside the world top 5. I got him away from the table, he’s lobbing and I’m smashing, I played what I thought was a winner… he somehow got his bat to it only just, ballooned it up in the air, and I actually thought I’d won the point and right at the last second it seemed to change direction and just got the side edge of the table. He won 16-14…I’d played so well. That’s one of those that will keep you awake at night!
What equipment are you currently using? Do you regularly change your blade and rubber combination for new products or do you tend to stick with a tried and tested formula?
Well, I’ve been with TIBHAR now since 2015, and I’m really happy with the equipment. I met with their Managing Director in Bangkok in 2014 when I was competing at the ITTF World Tour Grand Finals, and we discussed the possibility of me becoming a TIBHAR sponsored player. I’d not tried much of their equipment prior to this, maybe once or twice over the years on training camps if another player had a new rubber or something to try out, but I liked his ideas and suggestions about how we could work together on some different equipment; TIBHAR are very big on research and development.
I travelled to Sarbrucken where they are based, and practiced with Bojan Tokic who played for the Bundesliga Saarbrucken club and tested all types of woods and composite materials for my signature blade and others that would be developed into a range of blades that I am proud to endorse, as well rubber top sheet surfaces and many different types of sponges. Through a process of elimination, I found the right combination for me. Once I played with my signature blade, the Drinkhall Power Spin Carbon, I loved the feeling; for me, it’s incredibly well balanced. Arylate Carbon isn’t for everyone, but personally the way it’s combined in my blade… I love it!
After this, I was talking to TIBHAR about how we could then bring this blade to the UK market; TIBHAR had a presence here but nowhere near the level it had in Europe and Asia. The team at Bribar Table Tennis are great, I’ve got to know them over the years so they stood head and shoulders above the other options for me, and we’ve built a great partnership since then. There’s five blades in my range, including my own personal choice, the Drinkhall Power Spin Carbon; I’d also better mention that my wife Joanna also worked closely with me on the development of the Drinkhall Defensive Classic, or I’ll be in trouble as she did most of the work here! I don’t believe in varying my equipment very much, I very regularly change my rubber sheets but always for the same type, and I have a spare blade fitted with rubbers too for emergency situations. My blade is here to stay!
When I first tested rubbers and sponges for TIBHAR, I was very, very impressed with the quality, and in particular the consistency from one sheet of the same rubber to the next. I love the Evolution range, and I still play with the MX-P today; it’s quick, spinny and has just the right type of medium hard sponge for my game. I tested the rest in the range too, almost all of them I believe; I was the first player to test the final version of the MX-S, that was just about ready for market around that time.
I do change my rubber sheets very regularly, and this is a luxury afforded to me through being sponsored of course. It’s vital at this level, as they understand that every little bit of an advantage can make a difference – talk about marginal gains! That said, I’m also a firm believer that other players at different levels should try to regularly change their rubber sheets, especially if you’re playing with inverted type rubbers. To produce the spin required for our sport, it’s a very important factor.
Do you try new rubbers as and when they are released by TIBHAR?
Yes, absolutely. TIBHAR often want me to try the rubbers that they are developing at the time, but even just for me as a player, If I think that a new type of rubber or some new technology becomes available, I want to be first in line to try it out! As I said earlier, you can get a real edge over your opponents this way if you find something that works better for your own particular style. When I get new stuff to try, I’ll give them my feedback happily along with the other TIBHAR professionals so they can try to improve whatever rubber it may be. The next development is never far away!
How do you see Table Tennis progressing over the next ten years or so in terms of style and techniques?
That’s a really interesting question. I remember watching old matches of Jan-Ove Waldner growing up, with his unplayable serves, and then of course the free arm rule changed things a fair bit. Wang Liquin, he was another massive influence on me when I was training as a youngster, what a great athlete, so much power in the legs for movement, and that forehand was something else. The game is different now in some ways; the fundamentals don’t change, but changes in equipment can dictate our sport.
The way we have received service in the past 6 or 7 years has been a huge factor, with the different techniques now with flicking. It was always about keeping your opponent out and touching short, as anything half long would be punished… it’s still important to play tight, but players flick much more now as an aggressive opening shot.
Players in general are even more athletic, you have to have good movement and good technique for power plus the rubbers are less forgiving since the banning of speed glue. Also players are much more content now to play more backhands, many players are now equally as able on both wings. Overall, I’d say players in general will become even more aggressive, the young Chinese players are very aggressive but also very consistent. I think they will continue to build on the power to consistency ratio, attacking consistently from both wings but also with minimum errors, like Ma Long or Fan Zhendong.
Finally, how are you managing to practice or train with the current Coronavirus situation?
It’s not easy. It’s very important for me to try to stay in shape; I’m not able to do any practice on the table as I don’t have one at home, and obviously I’m only making essential journeys to the supermarket etc. so I’m limited to physical conditioning.
I’m doing some interval training, some 5k runs, skipping and core strengthening work in the house and in my garden to maintain my level of fitness. Hopefully things can improve sooner rather than later so I can get back to the table to do some training, but for now I’m stuck at home but enjoying the time with my family.Posted on 23rd April 2020
Mari Baldwin was a bit of a star at the recent English Senior Nationals – we caught up with her and her coach Craig Bryant to get a first-hand take on what has driven her rapid improvement.
Mari is only 15 years old but managed to make the final of the Women’s singles and only lost out to Tin-Tin Ho in the final having beaten some of the top ranked ladies!
We asked Mari and her coach Craig Bryant for their thoughts on her amazing performance…
‘This year I have continued my training sessions with Craig where I have been working really hard on my consistency. It really helps that we have honest and open communication as it allows me to improve at a fast pace.
I’ve been playing regularly in the Joola Plymouth Pairs league which has given me the opportunity to compete against some powerful and experienced players, which has significantly improved my performance in matches.
This season I have also started to attend my local gym and have been working with my personal trainer Alex to improve my overall fitness, strength and core-stability.
Having qualified for the Senior Nationals for the first time, I was really looking forward to the challenge, especially since I have had previous successes at this venue winning the Cadet National title here last year!
I think the key to my success was listening to my coach and keeping to my game plan regardless of my opponent.
It was rather intimidating playing on the Sunday as it was a different experience than any other matches I have played in before but I tried to stay focused despite the added pressure of the cameras!
It was also great to meet my mascot Jemima who is a Table Tennis prodigy in her age group.
I will keep training and working hard for the rest of the season and I am looking forward to playing abroad next year after my GCSEs.’
‘For me Mari’s quick progressions can be attributed to her openness to try new things and her understanding that her game has to be adaptable.
Mari’s development has come in stages, she had a very obvious strength at a young age and became reliant on it and as players matured they figured her out. We had to develop a more robust game plan, develop some new strengths and begin to build a more complete game. Once again, players started to find a way to play against Mari, so we again had to change things (this time a little more on the mental side), improving her patience as well as her consistency, for me, was the thing that helped contribute to her incredible performance at the Senior National Championships.
When Mari won the Cadet National Championships we did not go into the competition with the sole purpose of winning it. Instead the focus was to improve things round by round, to keep raising the level and to reach a point where everything just clicked and happened. The similarities in her Senior National Championships was uncanny, reaching the final of this competition was not a goal of hers but the focus remained the same. We’d talk about what needed to be better, whether that be her consistency, her placement, her tactics, execution etc. and as the competition progressed, her playing level improved, and she was making good decisions and things absolutely clicked.
Mari dealt with the occasion like an absolute professional. She was faced with competing on the one and only table, in front of a crowd, with the BBC filming, at her very first Senior Nationals event. I’m well aware of the thoughts that can creep into your mind in those scenarios!
However, I was put at ease when in Mari’s semi-final, after the walk out with the camera in her face, her being announced to the crowd, she came over to the corner to take her jacket off and said, ‘I feel fine now.’ Many, many positive things followed after that.
We have a good rapport in the corner, it works well. I understand her game and can inform her of what I think she needs to do to win that game. Mari trusts my knowledge and buys into the game plans. If things need changing then we change them, things have to be adaptable.
Mari has shown what her top level Table Tennis looks like, and we’ll continue to push those boundaries. We’re also well aware of her bottom level and we need to raise that too. If the latest result are good or bad it doesn’t matter because regardless, there’s some work to do.
We are constantly improving and adapting her game and style, we’re regularly adding new skills as well as adding strategies to her game that she’ll be able to call on, when she needs them. I think Mari has a great understanding that we’re developing her game for the long term and when a player has that common goal in mind there are some real possibilities for the future…’
You can read more on all our sponsored players here.Posted on 24th March 2020
Can Liam Pitchford make it 6 Singles Titles or will Paul Drinkhall stretch out to 7 Singles Titles this year? The draw has been made and there’s some talented young players looking to create an upset!
Both Liam and Paul have been in good form recently, Liam looked very strong at the World Tour Hungarian Open losing in the Semi-final to Japan’s Yukiya Uda, whilst Paul had a good run at the Portuguese Open bowing out in the quarter-finals.
Although they will be battling it out to make the Singles Final, Paul and Liam will also be teaming up again and looking to secure their 7th National Doubles Title.
The National Championships will be streamed live from Nottingham on the Table Tennis England Facebook Page on Friday 28th and Saturday 29th, then on Sunday the Finals day will be shown on the BBC Sport website from 9.30am.
This offer is available until 9am on Monday 2nd March 2020.
X Series Knock Out Table Tennis Bat
What a Christmas treat!
The TSP X Series Offensive blade fitted with our best selling rubber, the dynamic and spinny Tibhar Evolution MX-P 50 Hard.
Limited price offer and less than 100 available,
Straight or anatomic handles.Posted on 23rd October 2019
The TIBHAR Drinkhall Powerspin Carbon Blade is the signature blade and the exact model used by Paul Drinkhall!
The 6 times National Champion helped develop this blade and say’s:
“My blade gives me the speed I need for my fast, heavy topspin attacking game and the control required to receive, block and counter topspin well during the rally”.
His requirements are specific – a blade providing balance and power both at the table and at mid distance for his aggressive spin game played on forehand and backhand wings. The blade needed to be exceptionally stable to ensure tremendous control and touch when playing a short game, despite the requirement for high speed characteristics.
Speed 95. Control 75. Weight 85-90g. Handle – An, Fl & St.
The TIBHAR Drinkhall Powerspin Carbon Blade is the personal choice of Paul Drinkhall – so not a bad recommendation but why would us mere mortals choose to use one?
Matt Leete, Sales & Technical explains in more detail why it’s his pick…
‘I currently use the Drinkhall Powerspin Carbon blade. I find this blade really comfortable to play with. It is fast during the attacking shots but also with the slower touch game around the net, there is a lot of control for a fast carbon blade.
With this blade you get a lot of feel and feedback on counter top spinning shots – I have used some blades where it is hard to feel the contact of the ball, but with the Powerspin Carbon, you can feel the ball hit and catapult off the rubber which gives you far more confidence in your shots and feeling when being positive in your game!’
Matt Leete, Bribar Sales & Technical
Matt is nationally ranked at no 4 in the U/21’s and at no 21 in the Men’s – not only does he play the sport very well but he has real passion and knowledge with it.
He has just recently started at Bribar and is getting to grips with a really busy start to the season.
Unfortunately, Matt’s office football ‘dream team’ has not had such a good start, currently languishing in 9th… we are now just avoiding playing him at Table Tennis!Posted on 4th September 2018
Designed for a modern, athletic all action counter game typical of modern French players.
A 5 ply all wood blade built from limba and ayous wood plys which will always keep your opponent under pressure with uninterrupted action.
The extra hard inner veneer provides the necessary speed for loops and smashes, and the softer outer plys enable you to control your opponent’s biggest shots.
A real bargain blade – you should give it a try – it’s not as hard as you think!
Speed 84. Control 76. Weight 85g. Handle – An, Fl & St.
The Lebesson is the personal blade and choice of the French National 2017 and European Mens 2016 Champion Emmanuel Lebesson, a sure sign of quality!
Phil Thomas, Sales, Technical & Logistics Team explains in more detail why it’s his pick… ‘The Lebesson is the successor to the hugely popular original grey handle Samsonov Alpha and had a lot of expectation to live up to when it was introduced to the market. Tibhar have pulled it off though as it is currently one of the best value 5ply, OFF- blades available on the market. The blade delivers the perfect blend of Speed, Control and Ball feeling especially in conjunction with the Tibhar Evolution Series. This is down to the use of Limba & Ayous woods within the blade construction. You feel every ball onto the blade and really have the confidence to play whatever shot you want to. It slightly differs from the Samsonov Alpha by offering a bit more flex. This makes it better for players who prefer to play loops/topspins. Having said this, it is still amazing blade for blocking/hitting at the table. A real bargain blade and definitely worth a try! ’…
Phil Thomas, Bribar Sales, Technical & Logistics
Phil has been involved in Table Tennis for 15 years, playing at a Local, County & British League level. Ton’s of knowledge and experience in Table Tennis, Phil has recently ticked off a number of goals on his ‘Bucket list’… A photo with Bernadette Szocs, an interview with Table Tennis Daily (watch video clip at 14.43) and seeing his beloved Chelsea playing walking football!Posted on 6th March 2018
Paul Drinkhall Signature Table Tennis Bat
The weapon of choice for the 2017 Men’s Singles, Men’s Doubles & Mixed Doubles National Champion…
FULL PRICE £245.97
Watch the Drinkhall Powerspin Carbon Blade Video Review – with Paul Drinkhall and Dan Ives from TableTennisDaily.Posted on 16th February 2018
Bribar Table Tennis haven’t managed to sign these guys yet for local league but we can bring you their very own Signature bats…
These superb ready-to-go ‘Pro’ bats are well tested combinations of blades and rubbers – available now and with BIG savings!!
EMMANUEL LEBESSON SIGNATURE TABLE TENNIS BAT
The signature blade of the Men’s European Singles 2016 Champion with Evolution FX-P rubbers makes for a well balanced set up with tremendous feeling for all types of shots.
FULL PRICE £144.97
Signature blade of legend Vladimir ‘Vladi’ Samsonov is matched here with MX-P rubbers for plenty of power and fabulous touch for fast close to the table play.
This combination is used by TIBHAR/Bribar sponsored players: David McBeath, Emma Vickers and Emily Bolton.
FULL PRICE £157.97
The Paul Drinkhall Signature Table Tennis bat consists of Evolution MX-P rubbers on both sides and a Drinkhall Powerspin Carbon blade. Perfectly suited for a spin based attacking game both at the table and from mid distance.
Choose from a Straight, Flared or Anatomic handle on the TIBHAR Drinkhall Powerspin Carbon blade and the Sponge thickness on the TIBHAR Evolution MX-P rubbers. For the record Paul uses a Straight handle with 2.1-2.2mm rubbers on both sides!
FULL PRICE £245.97
Koki Niwa Signature Table Tennis bat is a combination of blade and rubber that’s designed for creative, close-to-the-table power Table Tennis and is a great choice for loop masters!
FULL PRICE: £263.97
Liam has been playing amazing Table Tennis for some time now and having beaten players such as Ma Long, Timo Boll and Japanese ‘Wonder kid’ Harimoto, he has risen rapidly up the World Table Tennis rankings to number 12!
Liam’s other achievements to date:
• 2018 ITTF World tour Czech Open Men’s singles third place
• 2018 Men’s World Cup Men´s Team Bronze Medal
• 2016 & 2012 Olympics Men´s singles United Kingdom Representative
• Multi national English champion in singles and doubles
Check out Liam’s new VICTAS Promotional Video
Married to wife Joanna, with two Children – Dougie and Bonnie (and one dog, Millie!)
Paul’s had a stellar few years, reaching a World Ranking of 39 (March 17), been the England No 1, is the English National Champion (Just the 6 times now) plus National Men’s and Mixed Doubles Champion!
Add to that a World Team Championship Bronze (2016), Commonwealth Gold & Silver medals (Glasgow 2014) and ITTF World Tour Spanish Open Champion 2014… a pretty good haul with more to come!
Check out Paul’s funny interview on the ITTF’s Ask a Pro Anything challenge
Paul and now Jo are both Tibhar/Bribar players!
Jo needs little introduction, she is a 3 times English National Champion, a Commonwealth Gold Medallist (Glasgow 2014), with her highest English ranking at 1 and her highest world ranking at 109 (May 2014) – not too bad!
National Mixed Doubles Champion with Paul!
Jo has her own signature bat:
A Drinkhall Defensive Classic blade fitted with Evolution FX-S – for precise chop and block play – for deadly kills opt for the 1.7mm sponge. Jo Drinkhall Signature Bat
It’s great to have Chris on board!
The larger than life player is currently ranked No.4 in England. One of the most popular and approachable players on the circuit, Chris Doran holds silver and bronze Commonwealth medals and is always one of the main contenders in the World Ping Pong Championships.
Chris has continued his great form by winning the Grand Prix Series of 16/17 season.
Watch Liverpool Grand Prix Men’s Singles final 2016 (6 mins highlights)
Jack is a Pro Table Tennis player and Paralmpian.
10 x times British Champion.
Recently won the Senior Nationals 3-5 wheelchair class event.
Jack plays with Victas equipment…
Craig has represented England at Junior level, competing in a number of international opens and European Youth Championships. He has also competed for his country at Senior level, one of his notable achievements, winning a team silver medal at the 2004 Commonwealth Championships in Kuala Lumpur.
Craig has recently started his own company delivering professional coaching and coach education – check out his website at TOP EDGE TABLE TENNIS.
Lois had a great 2017 National Championships, winning Bronze medals in the Women’s U/21’s and the Women’s doubles with fellow Sussex player Yoland King.
Highest rankings so far are 3rd in U/21’s and 8th on the Women’s ranking list.
Played for England Senior Women in the European Championships, picking up great experience and a couple of superb wins against players 200 places higher in the rankings. (2015)
Played for England at the U/18 European Championships beating no 3 seeds Germany 3-1 in the team event and won a crucial match against a top 30 player. (team placed 7th – best finish for some time)
Women’s British League “Player of the weekend” twice and part of a”Team of the weekend” twice!
Josh is ranked at No.3 in the U/21 Boys – rapid improvement has seen him compete at the highest level and he had a great National Championships finishing with an U/21 Bronze medal. He plays with a JOOLA FEVER blade and X-PLODE Rubbers.
Here are some of Josh’s best achievements…
Bronze medal in the National Championship Under 21’s
Bronze (singles), silver (doubles) and a gold (team) at the Junior Nationals
International schools – 2 silvers and 2 gold.
Represented England in Hungarian and French Open’s.
Currently ranked no 6 on the Women’s list, Mari is still only 15 years old and has beaten some of the top ladies in the country!
National Cadet Champion
Runner up – Senior National Championships 2020
Starting at the tender age of 6 years old, Matt has already won numerous titles including:
Under 11 National Champion at the age of 9
Team Gold at Primary School International (Guernsey)
Team Gold’s at Senior School Internationals (Cardiff & Ireland)
Singles Silver Medal at Senior School International (Ireland)
English Schools Singles Runner-Up U16 (2016)
UK School Games team event-gold (2015) & UK School Games Singles-gold (2016)
Blackpool Grand Prix U-21 winner (15/16)
Tipton Grand Prix men’s runner up & Tipton Grand Prix U-21 winner (2016)
Stockton Junior 4* Winner (2016)
National Championship’s Bronze medal U/21 (2017)
Sara Williams was an English cadet and junior international playing for England on several occasions. As a junior her biggest achievement was winning the Spanish open.
After taking a rest from the game for over 20 years Sara returned to playing competitively just over 2 and a half years ago. She has quickly risen to be the England Women Vets number 1 and is the current Vetts National Champion, 6 Nations Champion, as well as winning every Vetts Masters event she has entered over the last 2 season including the Western, Eastern, and Southern Masters!
She has represented Hertfordshire Vetts in the county Premier Division this year finishing the season with 100% record. She also plays for Ping Pong in the Vetts British Premier League where again she has a 100% record.
We are delighted that Mark has joined Team Bribar!
Mark is a fairly new Veteran player who in his first year, won a clean sweep of Men’s singles, Men’s Doubles and the Mixed Doubles at the Northern Masters.
He also won the Men’s Singles and Men’s Doubles at the Western Masters, plus alongside his wife Sarah, the National Masters Mixed Doubles title!
Former England No.1 Ladies Veteran – Emma had a good 17/18 season – peaking at the Veterans 6 Nations!
Emma has struggled over the past few years with a serious knee injury but continues to play the Veterans British League and at the Masters events. She is currently ranked No 8 in the country.
Chris won the Men’s Doubles title and came runner up in the Men’s Singles at the Veterans Masters in 2017.
Unfortunately, Chris has had a serious shoulder injury this season and has been working hard to get back to fitness, in the meantime he has been helping to develop a new Table Tennis Club in Sidcup called Cleeve Park TTC.Posted on 29th June 2017
Stephen’s enthusiasm and enjoyment of coaching is infectious, he’s an experienced coach at all levels and is currently the National Youth Coach for Table Tennis Scotland.
Is currently Head coach for Halton Talent Development Centre and National Coach for the British Para Table Tennis Team!
Top player and coach, Craig brings a huge amount of experience to the table and is currently expanding his professional coaching company – Top Edge Table Tennis.
Nat is a former England No 1 and International player, since starting her coaching career, she has held coaching roles with Greenhouse Schools, Table Tennis England and is now working full-time at the Grantham Academy and Charles Read Performance Centre.
Keta is a former Czech International Table Tennis player with a fantastic defensive style. With plenty of top level experience, she is currently coaching (with Paul Whiting) at the new Talent Development Centre at Eggbuckland Community College.
Chairman and lead Coach at Bishop Auckland, Matt has quickly developed the club – winning TTE National Club of the Year in 2016 and was personally awarded TTE Coach of the Year in 2014.
A very experienced coach and seasoned player, Paul is currently head coach at the Plymouth Talent Development Centre.
Full time coach and top player, Chris is also development officer at North Ayrshire TTC and Dumfries TTC.
Aad is an extremely experienced coach, having been a National Coach in the Netherlands, ETTA Regional Coach for players with Disabilities and through to his current coaching at Britannia TTC in Ipswich, Stowmarket TTC and NETTS!
Paul is a full-time professional Table Tennis coach – working at a regional, county and school level and is Head Coach at Blitz TTC.
Jo is the Lead Coach and Secretary at Torbay Table Tennis Academy. She played in the First Women’s League in Poland whilst completing her University Course.
Kris is the Lead Coach and Chairman at Torbay Table Tennis Academy. He has played in the first league in Poland and was a National medalist in the youth categories. He also now works as a coach at the Talent Development Centre in Plymouth.Posted on
David McBeath has had a fantastic Swedish Open, not content with beating the Korean world No 107 Eonrae Cho to qualify top of his group he went on to beat the Japanese world No 24 Maharu Yoshimura in the last 64!! Unfortunately, David’s great run ended against world No 54 Wang Yang (Slovakia).
To beat Cho, (former top 20 player) was quite a result but to then follow up with a career best against Yoshima, must give him great confidence for the rest of the season!
David has been playing and training abroad for a number of years now, including Bundesliga club, Werder Bremen, ttc ruhrstadt Herne and he currently plays for Swedish Elite club Osterlens btk. Unfortunately, David has been injured for most of the season but he’s been back training hard at Eslovs BTK…
It’s great to see David get some serious results and his next world ranking should start to reflect his big improvement. We are really looking forward to seeing his progress over the next couple of seasons and hopefully with many more great wins along the way!Posted on 18th November 2016
Welcome to our ‘Pro Tips’ section where Paul Drinkhall will be sharing regular tips on what it takes to play like a Professional Table Tennis Player!
Here’s a bit of background on Paul:
|Episode 1 – Explosive Forehand Topspin.
Paul explains the importance of timing, how to use all of your body to generate power and how he developed his powerful forehand.
You’ll also see lots of footage of Tom Lodziak getting battered by Paul!
It does take a lot of practice (years and years) to get a forehand as good as Paul’s, but if we can all learn from Paul a little bit, then we will have a stronger and more explosive forehand attack.
Here’s a topic that doesn’t seem to be discussed as much these days, I suspect due to the ever changing domestic competition calendar – the ‘off season’ and how it’s best used in terms of improving your game.
When I was younger, there was a definite summer break in between seasons; for us cadet and junior players especially, this coincided with the six weeks school holidays and our already intense training schedule could be increased again to allow for maximum improvements.
The Black and White picture was taken when I was 8 years old – I’m told it was the smallest shirt they had!
Without the worry of having to peak or prepare for a weekend competition, we could forget about the exercises that were designed to focus on ‘point winning’ and sharpening us up.
We could then concentrate on improving our base skills that would hopefully serve us well in the long term, such as:
– Footwork patterns
– Overall consistency
– Changes or adjustments to technique
– Physical conditioning
At the age of 9 with one of my first medals I started working hard on my celebration pose!
Working on these four areas, makes sense, as you definitely don’t want to be making adjustments to your strokes or not practising point winning exercises half way through a season (though this does depend in some respects on a players standard).
These days, the summer break seems to be shorter and shorter as the domestic competition calendar becomes more crowded, but my personal view is that if you can find a month or so away from competition to focus on improving the above elements of your game you will reap the rewards.
This is especially applicable to those players who may play a winter local league but then don’t compete in a summer league – use this time to your advantage guys and come back in September with an improved game and enjoy some big wins!
As a cadet I went to some great training camps and in some seriously baggy shorts…
Here’s how a two hour session for you and a practice partner might look like in the off season compared to when you are in regular competition for comparison.
Summer (Off Season) Session
7:00pm – 5 minute warm up, stretches etc
7:05pm – 10 minute knock up
7:15pm – 10 minutes each person hard regular footwork exercise, practising your weakest stroke as much as possible (if this is your forehand for instance, try designing an exercise where you play 2 or 3 forehands to every 1 backhand).
7:35pm – 10 minutes each person hard regular footwork exercise, practising your weakest stroke as much as possible…. Again! Yes you did hear me correctly, time to get a sweat on guys!
7:55pm – 10 minutes each person hard irregular footwork exercise, practising your weakest stroke as much as possible.
8:15pm – 10 minutes each person hard irregular footwork exercise, practising your weakest stroke as much as possible, this time including a service element.
8:35pm – best of three ends match play.
8:50pm – 9:00pm – physical conditioning. See Play it Like Paul article on TT fitness for some ideas of how best to use this fifteen minutes – better still, make it thirty minutes before you go home to your healthy steak or chicken breast and salad….!!!
7:00pm – 5 minute warm up, stretches etc
7:05pm – 10 minute knock up
7:15pm – 10 minutes each person hard regular footwork exercise, practising your weakest stroke as much as possible (if this is your forehand for instance, try designing an exercise where you play 2 or 3 forehands to every 1 backhand).
7:35pm – 10 minutes each person hard irregular footwork exercise, practising your strongest stroke for at least 50% of the time, starting with a service
7:55pm – 10 minutes each person serve and receive exercise, concentrating on simulating match type situations and scenarios and point winning play (for example 3rd or 5th ball attack).
8:15pm – Match play
8:50pm – 9:00pm – physical conditioning focused around speed, utilising exercises such as fast side steps, sprints, and anything which develops explosive speed
To sum this up, the key differences in the ‘off season’ are:
– Practise your weaknesses twice as much as your strengths to make big improvements to your stroke play.
– Practising physically demanding regular footwork exercises will improve effective technique, leg strength, movement and consistency.
– Slightly less match play and more time spent on developing areas of your game which need attention.
It’s time to take the above and put it into practice guys, ready for some big wins next season…
Today I’m going to look at a stroke that has become increasingly important to the point of essential in modern day table tennis – the forehand counter topspin, or re loop shot.
This is a stroke that was mainly a European innovation in the early 90s, with one player in particular, the Frenchman Jean-Phillippe Gatien (World Champion and Olympic Silver Medal Winner) using it to great effect. His entire game was based on quick footwork and taking the ball very early (or ‘off the bounce’) with his short and incredibly quick forehand topspin stroke, to take time away from the opponent and prevent them from adapting.
One of the main differences here is that Gatien would ‘re-loop’ or loop the opponents loop back at them, using the spin and speed which they had generated against them, which was very different to most players at the time who would either block the incoming loop shot or move away from the table to loop the ball back.
This shot has now established itself as an absolute main stay in world class table tennis, with virtually every player using it to varying degrees in their play – but also it’s a very popular and effective shot in both National and Local table tennis leagues. It’s well worth mastering!
The key element here is timing. If you watch the top players do it (and there’s MANY examples on YouTube) it looks rather easy; if only that was the case! However, with a little practice this shot will quickly become part of your arsenal, and like so much of our sport it becomes a natural trained reaction.
Let’s break the stroke down into a game scenario. I’m writing this from my perspective as a right handed player using my forehand…
– Your opponent serves short, and you are unsure of the spin; you decide that a long and fast, well placed long push is the best option for a return.
– Your opponent opens up with a topspin loop shot, wide to your forehand side.
– One of the KEY points here is to have recovered after your push receive. Your feet and body should have returned to neutral position, enabling you to have the best chance of dealing with your opponent’s next stroke. THIS IS CRITICAL!
– From the neutral position, you can take one side step directly side ways to your right so your now in the centre of the forehand side of the table. By moving directly sideways and not backwards and sideways, you give yourself much less ground to cover and put yourself in the right position to take the ball early (‘off the bounce’).
– Starting with your arm at a 90 degree angle, stroke over the top of the ball with a shortened forehand topspin loop action that should finish just a couple of inches in front of your nose. The stroke requires virtually no shoulder action at all, and is 80% forearm and around 20% wrist action, pivoting from the elbow.
– You must take the ball just after the bounce, and well before it reaches the peak of the bounce. This way, the topspin from your opponents shot has much less chance to kick and take effect, the ball will be easier to control, you’ll be able to get over the ball very easily and most importantly you’ll take time away from your opponent.
Sound easy? If only! It’s pretty challenging to get this stroke mastered, but after a good few weeks of practice several times a week this shot will begin to appear in your game as a matter of course. It’s instinct, you’ll play the shot without even realising!
Here’s three simple but effective ways to practice this, increasing in terms of difficulty:
Week 1 – 2: Your opponent serves short, you push long and fast to the body, they open up with a topspin loop wide to your forehand – you re loop the ball (TAKE IT EARLY!!) wide to the opponent’s forehand then free play.
Week 3 – 4: Your opponent serves short, you push long and fast to the body, they open up with a topspin loop anywhere to your forehand – you re loop the ball (TAKE IT EARLY!!) wide to the opponent’s forehand or body, then free play. By this point, your anticipation should be increasing and the shot should be in your muscle memory – this is more difficult!
Week 6 onwards: Your opponent serves short, you push long and fast or flick long and fast to the body or wide forehand, they open up with a topspin loop anywhere from the middle of the backhand court to wide forehand court – you re loop the ball anywhere, then play free.
This third exercise is particularly tough, but most beneficial; don’t be disheartened if you don’t enjoy success immediately, it does take practice to master this technique.
Players who have mastered this technique include Zhang Jike, Ma Lin, Wang Hao, Ma Long, and Timo Boll… here’s a short YouTube clip which shows some great counter looping.
WE HAVE EXAMPLES HERE OF RE LOOPING FURTHER AWAY FROM THE TABLE AS WELL – DON’T CONFUSE THE TWO!!
This is important, as it’s a different technique entirely.
We’ll start this series with the most important stroke in the game – you guessed it, the service!
If you’re serious about improving as a player, I can’t stress enough the importance of the service stroke in table tennis. Remember – it’s the ONLY shot in the game that you’ll ever have complete decision making control over. Once the ball is in play, to some extent your shots will be dictated by what your opponent does to the ball; but when that ball is in the palm of the hand prior to serving, you and you alone can decide what happens next!
As well as the obvious spin and speed aspects of the service in table tennis, I’d like to touch upon another aspect that’s important, and that’s exactly where the ball will bounce on your side of the table when you serve, and how this will effect where it lands on your opponents side.
Remember, the four fundamentals of table tennis when playing the ball are… Speed, Spin, Height, Direction.
When we think about our service when trying to play a short service, we must realise that for the ball to go short (ideally bouncing twice) on your opponent’s side of the table, we need to aim to have the ball land relatively closely to the net on our side of the table first. This is something we should be considering when we practice our serves; watch where the ball is landing on your side of the table, and watch the results when the ball travels over the net and lands on your opponent’s side of the table. You’ll notice that where you aim to have the ball land on your own side has a very direct result on where it lands on your opponent’s side… Ideally, for a good length short service (remember you don’t want it too short, as this makes the service easier to flick or for your opponent to keep the return very tight to the net, preventing you from making the first attack) you should be aiming to have the ball land somewhere in the region of the mark in figure 1.
If you’re aiming to do a long service as a variation (you may see that your opponent is moving into the table too early to receive your serves, or you may think that you can catch them by surprise with a different and unexpected service, or you may even realise that serving long to a certain area of the table can yield a particularly weak return that you can capitalise on) then you must remember the importance of serving with some speed! A long slow service will give your opponent lots of time to react and invite the first hard, direct attack. Remember that even modern defensive players will very often exploit a long weak serve with a good attacking stroke, so taking them by surprise and playing the serve with speed is key!
For the attacking player, a long service is often used as a variation and to ‘keep the opponent guessing’, or to try to break up their rhythm. If the service is not played with speed, or it lands too short on the opponent’s side, then it’s very easy to deal with and their return will put you under pressure immediately.
For a long serve to be difficult for your opponent to deal with, try to disguise the service until the last moment. You can practice making it look like another short serve, and then simply using your wrist angle your racket downwards so it’s pointing towards the floor and hit through the back of the ball at speed. This takes some practice to get right, so don’t worry if your first few attempts aren’t successful!
You should aim for the first bounce to be landing in the region of the mark in figure 2. You can see how this differs to the first bounce for the short serve; the ball bounces much closer to you, and the extra speed on the ball will take the service longer and quicker. As an extra tip, if you can direct this towards the opponents body or crossover point, it can make it very difficult for them to react quickly and play a good receiving stroke. Hopefully you will either win the point directly through an error from them, or you will take them by surprise, leading to a weak return which you can then follow up easily with a good shot of your own.
That’s it from me for now, so remember to spend some time practicing those serves and disguise them as much as you can! It’s a really worthwhile thing to practice if you’re looking for a fairly easy way to improve.
For the second instalment of this series, we are carrying on with looking at the service; this time we’ll look at how to change and vary the spin on your service action. Master this and you’ll add several points on your game, but it takes TIME so don’t worry if it doesn’t happen overnight. Keep at it!
A key part of an effective spin (or indeed no spin!) serve is the disguise which we apply to it. This can fool your opponent into making a weak return which we can then follow up with a preferred stroke of our choice, or even better the opponent can fail to return the serve at all.
Some masters of disguising the service that you may wish to watch on YouTube include Jan Ove Waldner, Liu Guoliang, Werner Schlager, Ma Lin, Ma Long, Xu Xin, Koki Niwa and Dmitrij Ovtcharov (his backhand service is particularly effective).
Last week we looked at the length of service being critical, and this applies here too. If you are serving long unintentionally (meaning a short serve that is ‘just drifting’ long) then the amount of spin can become in effective, as a good topspin loop from your opponent will still be the most likely outcome. In your service practice, try to always get as much spin as possible whilst maintaining the control to serve short! As your feeling for the ball and control develops with your technique, you’ll be able to impart more and more spin on the ball and also keep the service tight to the net and short on your opponent’s side.
Figure 1 shows where to contact the ball and the direction of the bat for a heavy backspin or chop serve. As you can see, the best place to make contact on the bat is at the leading edge – this will allow the rubber to ‘grip’ the ball and impart the spin, and it’s also marginally where the bat is travelling the fastest.
Ideally, your bat should be almost horizontal and you should flick your wrist at speed on
contact. Remember to keep a thin contact and ‘brush’ or ‘cut’ underneath the ball, and imagine it almost ‘rolling’ over the surface of your bat.
Figure 2 shows you where to contact the ball and the direction of the bat for a float or no spin service. This service is extremely useful if you can learn to make your action almost identical to your backspin service; your opponent will miss-read the spin, open the bat head too much when receiving and the ball will then come back to you higher than usual, giving you the time and additional height to make an easy first attack!
As the diagram shows, the best place to contact the ball is at the top or back edge of the bat – this means the ball has minimal time and space to ‘roll over’ the bat surface, meaning that very little spin can be imparted. To disguise this service to make it appear like a backspin serve, you can keep your bat virtually horizontal and the action the same, so the only thing that changes is the contact point.
Some players may also use the wrist less as to not impart any spin at all; you should practice this to make the difference between your backspin serve and float serve appear minimal!
Figure 3 shows where to contact the ball for a heavy topspin service. The best place to contact the ball here is once again at the leading edge of the racket, and the ball will ‘roll over’ the bat face in the opposite direction.
NOTICE THE DIFFERENT ANGLE OF THE BAT, as this is critical for the success of this service and the disguise! Your action can be virtually the same to your backspin service, but you are catching the ball around the back and underneath of it this time, and the contact point is different; it’s when your bat is on the way back up to finish the action.
If we look at the three serves we have covered so far, figure 1 could be the start of your action, figure 2 a split second later, and figure 3 a split second after that; your racket has continued to travel and it’s at what point you hit the ball, and where on the bat face itself, that will make ALL the difference.
Mastering a top spin serve that looks very similar to your backspin serve is a huge asset, as your opponent will make several weak returns and become very tentative and unsure when receiving.
Finally, Figure 4 shows a variation that can be useful, which is almost ‘straight’ sidespin. Here, we are not cutting or brushing underneath the ball, but simply at the back of it in an almost vertical position. This will generate straight sidespin with virtually no top spin or back spin at all, though of course there are many slight variants you can apply, with slight back spin and side spin, slight topspin and sidespin… you can experiment!
The side spin serve will ‘kick’ one way or the other, depending on which way you have your bat travelling, meaning it’s tricky for the opponent to be in the correct place to receive with as much control as they would like. It will also ‘rebound’ from their bat and spin the opposite way, meaning they have to think a lot about how there bat angle and how they will control this. Think about what 3rd ball shot you would like to play, and where you would like the ball to come back on your side of the table.
Using side spin in conjunction with back spin or topspin is a brilliant way to help disguise your service also, so practice brushing behind, underneath, and around the back of the ball at different points of your rubber surface and see what effect this has on the ball.
That’s it from me this week, now it’s time to get a big box of balls and practice those serves! Pick one serve at a time and try to master it for ten minutes, then try to do another spin variation with the same action. Remember, patience is a virtue!
In my third ‘Play it like Paul’ instalment, we are going to look at receiving service, something which I feel is possibly neglected slightly at club and intermediate level.
If we take the service as the most important stroke in the game (the ONLY time you have complete, sole control over what happens next to that ball!) then it follows that the receive of service is the second most important stroke. The reason is exactly what you may think; it’s the first chance in the rally that you will have to influence the outcome of that particular point.
It takes a long, long time to become a great receiver and something which can’t be ‘coached’ as such is the matter of ‘experience’; the more types of service you face, the better you will become as your knowledge level increases and practice against that type of service increases.
One thing we CAN coach and improve on though is giving ourselves the best chance of doing everything else right, namely thinking how to receive a service (what type of stroke to use) and then getting that receiving stroke technically sound to allow us to make the best return we can!
Let’s look this week at the service receive that is used enormously at the top level of the game, and should be used much more at other levels – the short touch/short push receive. The aim of this type of receive is to prevent your opponent from making the first attack, or ‘third ball attack’ as it’s commonly known. If you are an attacking player, it’s a great idea to think about making the first attack in the rally yourself, and at the first opportunity – if you allow your opponent to do this, then you are in effect setting yourself up to play a defensive block or tricky counter loop.
This rule of thumb now applies to defensive players too; the modern defender such as Panagiotis Gionis, Joo See Hyuk, Ruwen Filus or Chen Weixing all have brilliant attacking skills to mix the play (a tactic kick started by the Japanese defender Norio Takashima in the 1970s) and they will often elect to play a short push receive to try to make the first attack also.
The basic idea is to prevent your opponent attacking first by receiving with a short (we are looking for the second bounce to be a couple of centimetres short of the servers white line at the end of the table) push or touch that is low over the net, preferably with a little backspin to prevent a flick, and not TOO short so that it’s easy for your opponent to deal with.
Here’s a breakdown of the technique. Figure 1 shows a backhand receive, but the same rules below apply to a forehand short touch too!
As a slight word of warning, remember that there’s nothing easier to deal with than a half long touch or loose return. If you are unsure of the spin on the service and you don’t think you can touch the ball short, you are much better off playing a positive long dig/heavy push or flick and trying to get the return as deep as possible.
As you improve at this, try to touch the ball short with more backspin; this helps to keep the return low, tight to the net and stops your opponent from making an easy flick. Keep your wrist relaxed and try to ‘cut’ underneath the ball very slightly to impart a small amount of backspin. The stroke should be the same, only you will use your wrist ever so slightly more and your contact on the ball will be different.
Don’t try to touch a half long service short! This is incredibly difficult to do well. If your opponents service is long (the second bounce is after the line) then try to make the first attack yourself; trying to touch a long service short will more times than not end up as a disaster!
For an example of a fantastic receiver of the ball, look up the Chinese player Ma Lin on clips on youtube; his touch and technique around the net are second to none. He’s a pen hold style player, but the positioning and techniques are virtually the same.
That’s it for this week. Don’t lose patience with this, it’s a tricky technique to master, but well worth the time investment!
In the fourth instalment of my ‘Play it like Paul’ series, I’m going to talk about the block shot; this is without doubt one of the most under practiced shots in the book, especially at the intermediate level.
An early memory for me was at my first ever club, with a good player who loved to train hard, big physical exercises and lots of attacking strokes. The coach was trying to get this player to focus more on blocking as a key area for improvement, and the player’s reaction was… ‘Why do I need to practice the block when I can simply loop everything back?’ Why Indeed!
This notion that you are an ultra attacking player who will simply re-loop or counter topspin any attacking stroke that comes your way is idealistic at best and downright naïve at worst! Sometimes, your opponent will play a very heavily spun or very quick (or both!) attacking topspin shot at you and you won’t have the time to react and play such an aggressive stroke, or you may be slightly out of position, therefore not able to ‘get over’ the ball to counter any topspin effectively.
In week one, we talked about the importance of serving well. If your opponent has good length and well disguised spin serves, you may take a while to adapt and adjust to these, so your returns could be comparatively weaker, allowing them to make a hard and direct first attack. The key point here is that no matter how good your own attacking game is, you will never be able to stop your opponent from attacking or make the first attack every single time. Get used to it guys, it’s a fact of table tennis!
The backhand block is used much more in table tennis than the forehand block, particularly as the level gets higher. It’s true that attacking players in modern table tennis will ‘re-loop’ or counter topspin from the forehand probably 80% or even 90% of the time if they can. This is much more difficult from the backhand, so you will see the backhand block used much more in modern table tennis.
For either forehand or backhand block, key technical points are…
– The stroke should be short and start virtually on the ball, with almost no backswing.
– Your racket head angle should be adjusted depending on how much topspin is coming over the net generated by your opponent’s stroke. Open the bat angle slightly to deal with less topspin from your opponents stoke, and close the angle slightly to deal with more topspin.
– Your bat should be positioned around 30cm in front of your body at the start of the stroke. Here’s a tip; sit at a desk and pick up a pen and paper as though you’re about to write a letter. Your arm should bend naturally at around 90 degrees in front of you. This is almost an identical position to where your arm and hand should be positioned for a table tennis block shot!
– You should take the ball early, and before the top of the bounce. This makes any oncoming topspin easier to control, and also takes time away from your opponent.
– STAY RELAXED! Tensing up at the point of contact will result in you losing hand feeling and control, meaning you will struggle to control the topspin on the ball. Try to feel the ball!
– At the point of contact, use your hand. Keep this in mind! Gently roll your hand and wrist forward so you are in control of the ball.
– You DO need to play a stroke and not just hold your bat head in the way, you will only have control of the ball and be able to control the spin if you do this!
It’s a great idea to set exercises that practice the block shot…
– You can practice your service receive (perhaps a heavy backspin ‘dig’ to your opponents body or cross over point) with the opponents third ball being a topspin loop shot to either your forehand or backhand. You can then practice either forehand or backhand block, or even a re-loop or counter topspin should this be possible; remember, try to treat each ball on its merit!
– Ask your opponent to play consistent, medium paced alternate top spin shots to your backhand and forehand. You can then practice moving from the backhand side to the forehand side, blocking on each corner.
– A good variation of this exercise is to ask your opponent to occasionally play one of the topspins to your body, or cross over point. This helps with anticipation and ensures you get used to adapting and moving slightly to play a backhand block or a forehand block, instead of being caught out!
Over the years, there have been many incredible exponents of the block shot, who have used it to brilliant effect. One player does stand out here, and worth watching how he used the block to control his opponents attacking shots, making life difficult for them and creating angles for his own attacking shots – the great Jan Ove Waldner, the Swedish maestro. Have a look at this highlights clip of the great Swede on YouTube for an example of how to REALLY withstand an opponent’s attack with the ability to block. For possibly one of the finest examples of ball control I’ve ever seen, check out the point at 3:08; absolutely incredible!
Something I’m asked about a lot when I’m doing my coaching days and chatting to other players in general is how to play against long pimples; or the dreaded ‘funny rubbers’ as they can be known!
I’ll start by saying that in our sport, we are possibly more influenced by materials than any other that I am aware of. Through chatting to other athletes from different sports, it’s always came across to me that they don’t have either the sheer volume of variations available, nor the different types of rubber… I’m talking long pimples, short pimples, medium pimples, anti spin etc. Once you start bringing in different sponge thicknesses (including no sponge of course), different ways of ‘treating’ rubbers (sometimes illegally!!) it can become a minefield.
I’m going to focus on long pimples here, as I have found that this is (apart from reversed rubber) the most common type of material used by combination bat players. Also, I must say that sometimes these types of rubbers can take many hours of dedicated practice to play against, and many players really learn how to use them in a very skilful manner, so in no way would I say that they are inferior in anyway. I couldn’t… sadly it was only last season I lost to the great German defensive combination bat player Ruwen Filus!
However, the good news here is this… despite the many variants, the basic types all ‘respond’ and behave in the same way. And here’s the really good thing to know if you are one of the players who tends to struggle against ‘funny’ rubbers – you can practically decide what spin is going to come back to you.
Yes, you did hear that correctly; your opponent will have very little choice as to what spin comes back over the net from their rubber. This is the key to playing against a long pimpled player, and it matters not if they are a classic away from the table chopper or even a stand up to the table blocker with almost frictionless pimples – the variation is very small.
Ok. Here’s the basic rule… If you play:
These are the three scenarios you are faced with. So you can see that your shot will dictate the spin you get back; the more topspin you apply to your attacking shot, the more backspin you will be faced with. If you do a push return, you will get a ‘floated’ or no spin ball back… and so on.
With this in mind, here’s some great tactics to use against players who are chopping or blocking with long pimples – these apply whether they play with very little, maximum or no sponge. Just remember that the less sponge underneath the pimples, the more extreme the ‘reverse spin effect’ will be… but the trade-off is that these are harder to use and play strokes with.
– You serve short with no spin (heavy sidespin only helps the pimple player get more effect and ‘wobble’ on the return, so stay away from this until you are confident!). The next ball will be float, so easily attacked with a strong aggressive shot; there is no reverse spin effect to consider.
– You serve long and fast with no spin; the pimple player either blocks or chops the return. This return will also have very little reverse spin effect, perhaps a small amount of backspin due to the speed of the ball on a long fast serve having a little topspin on it – this will basically still be a very mild backspin or float return, so you can attack relatively easily without worrying too much about having to ‘lift’ the ball.
– In the rally itself, you play an aggressive topspin loop and the pimple player blocks or chops the ball back; this will result in a heavily backspun return. Your next shot should generally be a ‘touch’ or shot push return, this will help you safely return the ball without having to continue to lift your own ‘reversed’ spin over the net.
Also, for those who are starting to get the hang of this ‘reverse spin’ rule; you guessed it,
if you push to the pimple player, you will then get back a ‘float’ return that you can easily attack aggressively.
It’s as simple as that to describe, but of course the reality is that it’s harder in practical terms, and requires practice! As a youngster, I was lucky in that at my club I had a defender to practice against regularly who played with long pimples. This meant that I very quickly became accustomed to this style, and really this is key – putting the ‘rules’ into practice and learning just how much backspin you will get back after your topspin shot, and so on.
Once you are confident and have learned these basics to the point where you can do the ‘loop – push – loop – push’ pattern in your stroke making, you can start to experiment with looping two or three balls consecutively, knowing that each time you will need to apply more topspin to lift the ball, and knowing that in return you will get your own spin reversed back at you with some hefty interest!
Remember that many combination bat players and defenders in particular like one paced attacking shots, as this helps them settle into a rhythm, and find their range – so variation is the key. If you can continue to mix the pace of your attacking shots along with the ‘loop – push – loop’ patterns, you’ll be making life much more difficult for them than simply playing one paced attacking shots.
I love Christmas! It’s a time for family, friends, and of course a little excess. Though it’s a little different for a professional player, I still allow myself a few more treats than normal, and I have to work that little bit harder in my practice and physical training in the new year to make sure I’m back in shape. As a full time player your body is one of your work tools, and it needs to be in tip top condition if you want to be able to rely on it!
That said, I know how important fitness is for any level of player, and the benefits and rewards it can bring to your play. I thought with it being early January and with perhaps some of you doing the same as me and indulging a little more than usual over the Christmas period, I’d use this instalment of ‘Play it Like Paul’ to look at Table Tennis specific fitness exercises that will help you shift the additional pounds, start the new year on a positive note and improve your performance on the table no end.
There are several factors to fitness when applied to our sport, but the main one is without doubt explosive fitness. short, sharp bursts tends to be how we play, for defenders this can be a little different but the principal is the same; we serve or receive, play a rally, then rest. If we compare this to say a cyclist or marathon runner, there exertion is constant where as ours is all about explosion, starting and stopping. It’s important if we want to get the most out of our fitness regime that we remember this – and whilst a good 2 to 3 mile jog once or twice a week is brilliant, I’m aware that most of you won’t have the time I do to dedicate to this type of thing, so I’ve tried to pick the most beneficial exercises I can that won’t break the time bank!
Ok, we’ll start with a couple of exercises for you to do away from the practice hall. Light stretching is recommended!
Try doing this at first 5 times through. It’s not easy, but once you start to feel more comfortable after a couple of weeks, try it 6 times, then 7 times, and so on.
I’ve chosen just two high intensity exercises that won’t take long at all to do. Both of the above should take you no more than fifteen minutes to set up, stretch, go through them and then stretch again lightly before finishing. The beauty is you get a really beneficial workout in the time you can drive to the practice hall in, so for most of us its very achievable, and remember consistency is key!
Ok, now for some practice hall based exercises. Again, I’ve focused on high intensity exercises that can be done in a short period of time and will help to build that all important explosive fitness which will help your play.
Time yourself for twenty second and side step as quickly as you can in your ‘ready’ position between the table and the wall, using your non playing hand to touch each time. Repeat ten times for a great intense work out!
To increase the difficulty, add another 5 seconds on each time you want to pressure yourself when you start to see the improvement.
Try to complete this five times initially, and then increase again to six times, seven times etc. Your ability to move around the table will increase tremendously from applying yourself to these two exercises, I would recommend trying to complete them two to three times a week and don’t be discouraged if they are difficult at first, they are for us all!
By finding fifteen minutes twice a week away from the practice hall and by adding fifteen minutes onto the end of your practice session at the club twice a week also, after a month you will be fitter, faster, a better mover and have much better explosive fitness.
I can’t over emphasise the effect these things will on your play, it adds points to your game and if it’s helping to shift the Christmas excess it can only be a good thing!
Happy New Year from me to you all, and remember that with the above, consistency is key – stick at it!
Tibhar Drinkhall Defensive Classic Table Tennis Blade
Jo Drinkhall, England’s leading defensive player, plays a world class modern defensive game and was actively involved in the production of this new blade.
Jo says: ‘My requirements are quite exacting – I need a blade not only with excellent control and the potential for precise attacking shots but it must also have good balance and the Drinkhall Defensive Classic meets this criteria in full’.
Tibhar have used their technical expertise to blend different wood types using special glueing processes to produce a blade for modern defensive strategists that allows you to perform a range of precision shots from heavy chop and float to crisp attacking strikes.
The blade can also be used with combination rubbers being well suited to the use of long pimples and anti’s.
Bribar Tip: Play the way of the returning champion with the Drinkhall Defensive Classic fitted with Evolution FXS at a special bundle price.
A warm welcome to our on-line resource for Bribar Agents!
A big thank you to all our 130 (and growing) Agents who we work with on a daily basis and who help to keep Bribar at the forefront of Table Tennis in the UK.
We have created this section to:
To get started scroll down for ‘How it works’, Special Offers and News sections…
Thank you again for choosing Bribar and we hope you find this resource very useful during the 2019/20 Season…
Best wishes, Barry Chapman
If you have any questions regarding the Agent Section please feel free to drop Wes Bush-Harris a note and he’ll be happy to help!
IMPACT Top Training Table Tennis Balls
CHEAPEST PRICE IN EUROPE
New from IMPACT, the highest quality TOP training ball available – virtually 3* in performance and available in white and orange!
Produced using new ABS material and thanks to the careful selection philosophy of IMPACT, the Top Training ball ensures hardness, durability and consistency.
Available in mid November with Agent prices as follows:
We would like to ask a small favour – we are always trying to recommend the best and most suitable products to customers and a great way to do this is through reviews on the website.
If you could take a moment to leave a review on a product you recommend, use frequently, or you think is ideal for certain players – this would be a great help!
It’s quick and easy and just a sentence would be perfect…
Let us know if you would like to host an evening or day of Bat Testing and Trade Stand action near you!
Our ever popular testing evenings are a great opportunity for players, coaches and agents(!) to ‘try before you buy‘ from a wide range of classic rubbers and blades through to the latest new items for the 16-17 season…
We have an extensive bat testing range for players to try out, with numerous different combinations that our knowledgeable staff can help guide players through and discuss options that may suit their game!
If you would like to discuss hosting a bat workshop, we are quite flexible on how it runs locally – we would suggest that the following are essential to make it a successful event:
Other than that, offering refreshments, coaching and social elements to these sessions also works well!
If you are interested please drop us an email or call 01227 860348.
We know lots of people struggle to find the right gifts for Table Tennis Nuts – so when it comes to Birthdays, Christmas and as a ‘Thank you’ – the huge variety of Table Tennis equipment can be baffling.
To this end, the E-Gift Voucher can be purchased just like any other product on the website and emailed direct to the lucky recipient – taking the stress and guess work out of it!
Table Tennis Organisations
We can also provide E-Gift Vouchers to the Table Tennis Community – often Clubs and Leagues like to reward Volunteers or they are used at Events and Competitions as prizes…
If that is something we can help you with, please just drop us an email or call and we can create E-Gift Voucher(s) as required.
Full T’s & C’s can be found in the product description and in the website ‘Conditions of Use‘.
We will be reducing our best-selling rubber ranges for the Black Friday Weekend (23rd – 25th November) to £35.50 per sheet, however, we have reduced the price of all these rubbers for Agents to £32.99 and you can get this price now and until 9am on Monday 26th November!
Included are the TIBHAR Evolution range, JOOLA Rhyzer range and GEWO Nexxus rubbers.
We have brought together a wide selection of our ‘One-off’ blades and ‘Ex Bat Test’ blades so that we can offer these exclusively to Bribar Agents on a ‘first come first served basis’!
As per last season, we have collated them all into one list and they can be ordered via email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call him to discuss on 01227 860348.
We will look to update the list on a daily basis – these offers were really popular last year so be quick!
As part of our summer stock take we have a number of robots available at serious knock down prices!
We have 3 x Joola Buddy Pro robots @ £50.00 each – ex display. SOLD OUT!
These robots have been tested and they are all in working order but as they are ex display and have been previously used they come without a guarantee.
We also have a selection of surround covers: a few blue, various green in 2.3m and 2.0m lengths, mostly JOOLA but some from other manufacturers. These have been used for tournament hire but may do a good job for a club. FREE to a good home but you will either have to pay for postage or arrange to collect either from our office or a local tournament or bat test event.
For further information on any of the above please contact email@example.com or give him a call. SOLD OUT!
We also have a range of badminton rackets, plastic shuttlecocks and a few tennis rackets at very reasonable prices. These are suitable for home use, schools, youth clubs etc. If you are interested please contact Sue for further details on firstname.lastname@example.org.
During July we are reducing the price of TIBHAR Aurus Sound rubber for agents to £25.99!
A really popular rubber with our customers see what they have to say…
Was recommended the rubber after talking online and reading reviews. The ratings don’t lie great spin, control and speed. It suits an all-round game but gives plenty of gears for stepping up the attack.
What a rubber! I tried this rubber on my friends blade (Jun Mizutani ZLC OFF) it is the best rubber I have tried such as tenergy 05 tibhar evolution mx-p joola rhythm, Donic Bluefire m1.
We’ve been pleasantly surprised by the new JOOLA RHYZER rubbers!
The RHYZER 48 is a quick beast of a rubber (see our recent blog) and the RHYZER 43 version although not as rapid, still has the thin rubber topsheet and thick pink sponge – giving it plenty of zip too!
Soon to join them is the new Pro 50 version, it’s is likely to be popular with high level players when it arrives in the middle of June… watch this space for specs and price….
We’ve worked hard with TIBHAR to bring you some new products in time for the Team World Cup…
We are delighted with the new Absolute Blade from TIBHAR, it’s got everything an entry level blade should have – great control, not too heavy, a bit of ‘zip’ for attacking shots and paired with some quality rubber – it’s bound to be a best seller!
Tibhar / San-ei Team World Cup Limited Edition Shirt
Stylish, fully breathable 100% micro fibre material for maximum comfort.
Limited edition shirt featuring the Tibhar/San-ei table sponsors logo and Team World Cup graphics to commemorate this very special event.
Grab these Training T-shirts at an amazing price while stocks last – available in five colours, Red, Blue, Green, Yellow and Orange.
We have negotiated a special deal with JOOLA which we are passing on to you. These special prices only apply to online orders!
A high tech rubber perfect for the attacking player with the prolonged ball contact allowing you to feel in control at all times.
Incorporating both Geo Force Power and Geo Sponge technologies and featuring a medium soft 37.5 degree sponge, Samba Tech provides true speed glue feeling, fantastic durability, excellent touch in all situations and amazing arc.
The offer only includes 2.3mm (max) thickness and is limited to 400 sheets only, maximum of 10 sheets per agent.
Spin 114, Speed 98, Control 80.
Normal agents price £42.99
To get in the festive mood, we have added extra discounts when you add two rubbers to your basket – check out these reductions!!
– Buy 2 sheets of Samba Tech max for only £29.99 per sheet.
– Buy 2 sheets of Novic for only £16.99 per sheet – save 20% + from normal agents prices.
IMPORTANT NOTE – PRICE INCREASES ON ALL BUTTERFLY PRODUCTS
With immediate effect, customer and agents prices for all Butterfly products listed in our 2016/17 catalogue have increased.
The online customer and Agents prices have been changed accordingly, but please remember the increase if your customers are using the actual catalogue.
This price change has been put into effect by Butterfly themselves and wasn’t our decision. Unfortunately we have no control over Butterfly prices.
With this price change, now might be a good time to look at alternatives to the Tenergy series!! If you have any questions about which rubber will suit a players game, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.
ALTERNATIVES TO TENERGY RUBBERS
|Tibhar Evolution||£49.99||£37.99 (£36.99 if you buy 2 or more)||See Current Price list|
|Tibhar Rhythm||£49.99||£37.99 (£36.99 if you buy 2 or more)||See Current Price list|
|Joola Rhythm P & Tech||£54.99||£41.99||See Current Price list|
|Joola Samba 27 & 19||£45.99||£36.99 (£34.99 if you buy 2 or more)||See Current Price list|
|Victas V>15 Extra||£49.99||£39.99 (£37.99 if you buy 2 or more)||See Current Price list|
BUTTERFLY PRICE INCREASES
|TENERGY 05||£62.99||£53.99||See Current Price list|
|TENERGY 05FX||£62.99||£53.99||See Current Price list|
|TENERGY 64||£62.99||£53.99||See Current Price list|
|TENERGY 80||£62.99||£53.99||See Current Price list|
|TENERGY 80FX||£62.99||£53.99||See Current Price list|
|SRIVER L||£37.99||£32.99||See Current Price list|
|TACKINESS C||£37.99||£32.99||See Current Price list|
|TACKINESS D||£37.99||£32.99||See Current Price list|
|JUN MIZUTANI ZLC||£259.99||£229.99||£219.99|
The ‘Cuneo’ Shirt is a top quality 100% polyester shirt with subtle styling and is designed to draw perspiration away from the body.
The ‘Cuneo’ is comfortable, breathable and fashionable – three great reasons to choose this for next season!
Colours include – Black, Red, Blue, Light Blue, Yellow and Bronze.
Sizes – 4XS to 5XL
Samba 27 is designed for top players with a strong technical game.
The Japanese factory tuned sponge is combined with an extra grippy rubber surface producing great arc even when away from the table allowing spin, pace and placement to be accurately controlled.
Samba 19 is perfect for serious players, features a forgiving 41 degree distinguishable blue mid soft sponge and grippy top sheet.
Great control , excellent spin and penetration.
The new Samba rubbers are already a hit with JOOLA sponsored players and guaranteed to be best sellers in the 2016– 17 season.
Established by world maestro Ding Yi, the Dingo+Swiss brand is focused upon specialist pimple rubbers and perfectly matched blades.
Ask the team for more information on these great combination bat products from Dingo+Swiss
Modern but stylish shirt made from 100% polyester for best breathability and comfort. The neon colours are almost impossible to reproduce in print but won’t be missed!
Colours include – Neon Orange, Neon Green & Blue.
We are delighted to announce sole distributorship in the UK of the amazing der-materialspezialist range of products.
The outstanding ‘slick’ anti loop rubbers for the modern combination player offer amazing spin reversal levels; backed by a full range of long pimples, short pimples and blades for combination play experts.
Combo bat players are pretty excited about the new range of rubbers – take a look at the Transformer rubber for instance – with new dampening sponge technology, we’ve never seen anything like it for spin reversal!! Game changer?
…SHIRTS NOW OUT OF STOCK…
The exclusive Tibhar Drinkhall World Team T-shirt has yet to go on sale – so be first to get your hands on one!
Celebrate Paul’s World Team bronze medal with Bribar! Paul was actively involved in the design. Round neck high quality T shirt made from 100% breathable microfibre, for top comfort. Features the Stylish Drinkhall and MX-P logos; the latter is normally only available on ‘pro’ players shirts RRP £18.99Posted on 4th February 2016
The original blade of the multiple European champion and World Cup winner Vladimir Samsonov.
Relatively stiff medium hard feel and designed for mid distance counter and loop play.
Counter loop off the bounce with confidence, and play controlling touch shots at the net all day long.
7 ply wood build with the outer limba plys giving catapult effect to put your opponent under pressure.Posted on 24th November 2015
At Bribar we are excited to welcome David to the Bribar/Tibhar sponsored team! Using his new Tibhar Samsonov Force Pro blade and Evolution MX-P rubbers, David, currently ranked England No.7 was the surprise winner at the recent Aldershot Grand Prix. Seeded No.3 he played commandingly throughout the week-end and comfortably won the Open Singles defeating both Ryan Jenkins and Gavin Rumgay 3-0 in the Semi-Finals and Final respectively. The Tibhar Evolution MX-P rubbers allowed him to dominate with his consistent but powerful backhand loop.
Watch David in action in the Aldershot GP Men’s final against Gavin Rumgay (5 mins highlights)
Well done David, we look forward to your future successes!
Exciting prospect Kate Cheer took another step forward by taking runners up spot in the Women’s Band 1 event at the Aldershot Grand Prix. Kate, ranked No.4 in the Junior Girls has recently joined the Bribar/Tibhar team and plays with a Samsonov Stratus Carbon blade and Evolution MX-P rubbers.
We’re sure Kate will continue to do well throughout the season!
Chris, a leading English Veteran player has joined the Tibhar/Bribar squad and plays with the Samsonov Stratus Carbon blade and Evolution MX-S rubbers. Chris took the Men’s Doubles titles and came runner up in the Men’s Singles at the recent Veterans Masters.
Well played Chris!
England No.2 Ladies Veteran Emma is the latest recruit to the Bribar/Tibhar team. In the recent North East Veterans Masters, Emma had a clean sweep winning the Ladies Over 40’s Singles, Ladies Doubles and Mixed Doubles. Emma plays with Samsonov Stratus Carbon blade and Evolution MX-S rubbers.
Excellent stuff Emma!
Again, a warm welcome to all our latest sponsored players.