Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Top times at the table tennis

My Olympic adventures continued today with the women's table tennis semi finals at the Excel centre. Table tennis was actually one of the few sports we wanted to see in Athens but didn't manage to (I used to play league table tennis as a lad), so it was a treat to have tickets to a couple of important matches like this.

The first match - between Ding Ning from China (the World Number 1) and Singapore's Feng Tianwei was an absolute belter. Ding Ning won the first two games easily and it looked like the match would be over in no time. But then Feng - cheered on by most of a packed crowd - embarked on an amazing and unlikely comeback. Ding Ning still won eventually - 4 games to 2 - but there was some incredible table tennis played. If you're reading this in the UK within seven days of me posting, do check out the astonishing rally at 45m 15s on the iPlayer here. Just incredible.

The second match, between Japan's Kasumi Ishikawa and China's Li Xiaoxia never quite hit those heights, but it was still a genuine thrill to be there. Wasn't sure how much of spectator sport table tennis would be - but I'd love to see more of that quality again. There was a great atmosphere in there again today too. London is really taking to these Games.

Actually, it's great to see how the Olympics being in London is making so many people in the UK discover that football isn't the only worthwhile spectator sport. I've seen people raving about beach volley, water polo and handball, among others. I'm hoping that one legacy of these Games was that sports like that get more of a look-in with mainstream TV coverage.

Anyway, best get to bed - got to be up in about 6 hours to head to the archery at Lord's. Again, can't wait.


Rob Salmon said...

Great to see Robin The Robin is back! The table tennis sounds ace :)

Anonymous said...

That rally was amazing, never seen anything like it, or heard crowd getting louder and louder during a table tennis rally. Thanks for link. M