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2009 News
Wednesday, 18 November 2009
Susan Sarandon to meet Swedish table tennis idol

Susan Sarandon to meet Swedish table tennis idol

Wed Nov 18, 2009 11:48am EST

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STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - American actress Susan Sarandon, due in Stockholm to receive an award next week, has no plans to meet journalists but she will set aside time to meet one person -- table tennis legend Jan-Ove Waldner.

The Oscar-winning actress, a keen player herself, put in a request to meet with Olympic gold medalist and former world champion Waldner, the director of the Stockholm Film Festival told Reuters on Wednesday.

"It was on her initiative, we just made the effort to find him," Git Scheynius, director of the Stockholm Film Festival, said. "She's actually involved in a table tennis club in New York -- that's one of her greatest hobbies."

Waldner is to his sport what Michael Jordan is to basketball or Tiger Woods is to golf. He won the World Championship twice in singles and took home an Olympic gold medal during a career that spanned more than two decades.

His longevity earned him the nickname "The Evergreen Tree" in China, where he is particularly revered.

Scheynius said Waldner was surprised at the invitation but gladly accepted. He and Sarandon will sit next to each other at the dinner, she added, but will not be alone.

Sarandon, who won an Oscar for the 1995 film "Dead Man Walking," is due to receive a lifetime achievement award at the festival.

Any chance Sarandon might square off with Waldner across a table tennis table during her time in the Swedish capital? A festival official said that if they did it would be a surprise.

Posted by netta_ct at 8:46 PM EST
Updated: Thursday, 26 November 2009 8:48 PM EST
Wednesday, 11 November 2009

Posted by netta_ct at 12:00 AM EST
Updated: Wednesday, 11 November 2009 2:59 AM EST
Thursday, 15 October 2009
M-T Players in |National Seniors Championship

Two Middletown TTC regulars competed this summer in the National Senior Games Championship - Held mid August in San Francisco.

  Howard (Howie) Eichner competed in the 55-59 age group, while Larry Chou played in the 65-69 category.

 The Two week long event drew about 10,000 athletes, 50 and older for competition in 24 sports, including 334 players in the Table Tennis events.

Both players made it a vacation with their wives in the beautiful Northern California area. 

While neither player reached the finals in the competitive event, both made it out from their original round-robin group before losing in the elimination rounds.  

  Participants finishing in the top 3 in their age division in the Connecticut Senior Games in even numbered years, qualify to enter the National Games, held in the Odd numbered years. The Middletown TTC is expected to host the 2010 TT event next spring, to qualify players for the 2011 games in Houston.

 The 2009 Connecticut Senior Games TT event's date, is to be announced, in late 2009 after initially being postponed dur to flu outbreak concerns. E-mail Dave or re-check here to be informed when the date is set.  

Posted by netta_ct at 4:35 PM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, 11 November 2009 2:57 AM EST
Thursday, 11 June 2009
CT TT assists Middle School TT Event in New Haven

  Two New Haven Middle school Table Tennis teams with connections to CT. TT Association held an inaugural competition in June 2009.



Amistad Academy  hosted the event, a team competition with  nearby Conte West Hills School.  The Amistad program, an afterschool activity option at the Charter school, is conducted by Peter Noble's Fairhaven Athletics organization.  Peter was initially trained by CT TTA director Dave Strang.  Strang was the program's  original coach between 1994 and 2000, before Peter, and continues to conduct annual coaching clinics at the school.

  Conte West Hills school's TT program is newer, conducted by Kacey Rosenfeld, a Physical Education teacher at the New Haven public school located not far from Amistad. Kacey has also been a student of CT TTA Coach/Director Dave Strang at the Middletown TT Club since finding the club a couple years ago.   

  Guests, Conte West Hills took most of the singles matches to gain an insurmountable lead, before Amistad won a number of doubles matches, finishing with a 10 to 4 match victory for Conte West.

8 Players, a mixture of boys and girls, represented each school, competing on 3 tables in the Amistad Gymnasium in the afternoon, afterschool event.

 As the conclusion of the Spring TT season for both schools, the coaches, and a number of the players, expressed enthusiasm over the well attended and conducted event, and mentioned how plans for a rematch next year will motivate the students to more serious preparation during next year's club practices.

Photos below:

Coach Kacey watches and videotapes and  Coach Peter hits with one of the kids.


Posted by netta_ct at 3:47 AM EDT
Updated: Friday, 12 June 2009 4:33 AM EDT
Wednesday, 10 June 2009
AFS Seeks Host Family for 2009/10 school year

AFS Student Exchange organization is seeking a host family for an enthusiastic young Chinese student (Yicheng) who loves table tennis and basketball.  

They mentioned Fairfield County but they can also consider other Connecticut towns.  The student has health insurance coverage and spending allowance for normal teen expences. Host families provide a bed, meals and share normal family activities. I assume families with similarly aged children may be prefered. He will be 16 years old, and program guidelines suggest he not be hosted by a family speaking his native language.

The goal is to experience life as a USA student with a friendly family during the 2009-2010 school year - starting with his arrival in August.

For additional information, please Contact Jenifer Anderson by e-mail - janderson(removethis)@afs.org for more information.  Or call 1-800-876-2377 ext 131

Posted by netta_ct at 5:12 PM EDT
Updated: Friday, 12 June 2009 4:39 AM EDT
Tuesday, 12 May 2009
World Class TT on TV, and the Internet

Universal Sports channel, available on some local cable systems, (and through the air on a digital 'side' channel from NBC's local
affiliates, probably including digital over the air channel 30.3) . will begin airing matches from the recent World Championships at various times & days beginning in mid-May 2009.

Repeat broadcasts are expected throughout the summer and early fall and streaming video of even more matches are available archived at ITTF.com

The digital signal may be available even through a cheap rabbit ears antenna - if you are close enough to the station towers and can't get it through your cable provider.

You would need a digital TV set rescanned for broadcast channels after you temporarily attach an antenna in place of the cable, or the add-on onverters available at Walmart and other stores for around $50, attached to a recorder or old-style non-digital TV set.

If you have a high-speed internet connection, iphone etc, matches from past events are often available at Youtube, and current and recent tournament matches are also available to stream or download at sites like ITTF.org.

Posted by netta_ct at 4:22 AM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, 11 November 2009 3:26 AM EST
Tuesday, 5 May 2009
A Champion passes from the scene

 Mike Demsey, a USATT Hall of Fame player, and national and world wheelchair Table Tennis Champion, shown below as flag-bearer for the USA team to the Para-Olympic Games,  passed away suddenly from an anueryism in April at age 52


He was one of the first players I played against, as teenagers, in USATT tournament competition in Ohio in the early 1970's - as shown in the B&W photo.

Not only an accomplished champion among wheelchair players, he was a 2000 level rated player competing among the able bodied.

Shown recently with son Henry above, he was remembered by many in the TT community at recent memorial services in Columbus and San Diego as a 'champion' father, ,  husband and friend.  

His HOF biography is available here:


His memorial website here:


Posted by netta_ct at 6:28 PM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, 12 May 2009 4:33 AM EDT
China takes World TT Titles in Japan

China's Wang Hao kisses the trophy in the awarding ceremony after winning over his compatriot Wang Liqin in the men's singles final match against at the World Table Tennis Championships in Yokohama, Japan, on May 5, 2009. Wang Hao won the title after beat Wang Liqin 4-0 in the final. China's Wang Hao kisses the trophy in the awarding ceremony after winning over his compatriot Wang Liqin in the men's singles final match against at the World Table Tennis Championships in Yokohama, Japan, on May 5, 2009. Wang Hao won the title after beat Wang Liqin 4-0 in the final.(Xinhua/Ren Zhenglai) 

China swept all the gold and silver medals in the eight-day championships, leaving only three bronzes to be split up by the Hong Kong team, South Korea and host Japan.

    It was China's fourth, or third straight clean-sweep of the world championship golds. The overwhelming success made Chinese table tennis boss more worried than joyous.

    "I am concerned about the future of table tennis," said Cai Zhenhua, chairman of the Chinese Table Tennis Association (CTTA). "I hope not only does China enjoy table tennis, but also the whole world."

    Cai, also a Chinese vice sports minister, promised that the CTTA would help the rest of the world close the gap with China in table tennis.

    "We have started an aid program to raise the standard of the sport in the world, which includes attracting more non-Chinese players to the Chinese professional league and inviting foreign players to train with the Chinese team," he said.

    In a lopsided men's final, the top-seeded Wang Hao, who earned a tag of "big-time choker" after finishing twice in the 2004 and 2008 Olympics, crushed Wang Liqin 11-9, 13-11, 11-5, 11-9 to win his first major singles title.

    Wang Liqin, whose victims included Olympic singles gold winner Ma Lin, withered after losing the first two sets with the narrowest margin.

    Ma Lin and Ma Long picked bronze medals.

Posted by netta_ct at 4:41 PM EDT
Monday, 6 April 2009
Senior Games TT set for early May




Players 50 years or older - as of dec 31st 2009 - are eligible for the 2009 Connecticut Senior Games event - once again hosted by CT TTA at Middletown.

This year's event will be held starting shortly after doors open at 5pm on Sunday May 3rd. Advance entry is encouraged, but walk-in entries will be accepted as space allows.

Participants get a free Senior Games T-shirt and compete with players based on age groupings. The club is open for regular play at 6:30 and event participants are welcome to stay for that after their seniors play ends.        Entry information is available at:


Results from last year's tournament are available at the bottom of this newsblog.

Posted by netta_ct at 3:35 AM EDT
Updated: Friday, 1 May 2009 4:10 PM EDT
Sunday, 11 January 2009
Confirming our playing schedule-

We expect that weekly sessions at both locations will continue as listed at the homepage throughout 2009, including the summer. 

Please understand that 'normal' winter snowstorms won't usually cause cancellations, and that we have always played on Sundays during the Superbowl and on almost every three day weekend .

New Phone numbers and procedures: 

To confirm current regular schedules and locations, check the recorded schedule message - available 24/7 at (203) 66O-1363.

(Only) call my other number, my cell phone - preferably about an hour to 90 minutes before any session - if weather seems a possible issue.

   I'll leave a temporary outgoing message on my cell phone, or return your call as soon as I can, IF we have a weather related cancellation. Otherwise trust the regular schedule phone message, cancellations are rare and I only have these procedures because so many players drive 30 to 60 minutes to join us at either location.

  Or If the regular schedule recording is unavailable when you call, try back a bit later -then call my cell phone  and leave a message, including name and full phone number, if a recording is still not available - PM hours at (2O3) 668-l945. 

  Since my cell phone number is listed on the internet, and costs me by the minute, I frequently have the ringer off and check my voice messages and caller ID periodically to return calls, especially when expected, including if a session, or other pre-planned coaching would need to be be cancelled.

  Don't expect an immediate call-back from my cell phone unless it's urgent, like a cancellation, and also , messages at the regular schedule information number,only get to me as forwarde e-mail attachments which I may sometimes have problems or delays retrieving. - best to talk in person, e-mail me, or leave a message on my cell phone - depending on the urgency and length of your inquiry.



Posted by netta_ct at 4:52 AM EST
Updated: Tuesday, 12 May 2009 4:40 AM EDT

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