Table tennis also known as Ping-pong, is a sport in which two or four players hit a light weight ball back and fourth across the table using small bats. The game takes place on a hard table divided by a net. Except for the initial serve, the rules are generally as follows: Players must allow the ball played towards them to bounce once to the edge of the table, and return it so that it bounces to the opposite side at least once.
Points are scored when a player fails to return the ball within the rules of table tennis. Play is fast and demands quick reactions. Spinning the ball alters its trajectory and limits an opponent’s options, giving the hitter a great advantage.
History of Table Tennis
The origin of the game is not really known and there is no consensus about it among sports historians. America and South Africa. But the majority opinion favors Britain as the birthplace of table tennis. It is also known as ‘ping-pong’ mainly because of China which has maintained a heavy dominance over others in this sport.
Table tennis first appeared at the Rome 1960 Paralympics Games and took almost 30 years to finally became an Olympic sport, in Seoul 1988. Table Tennis was invented in England around 1880 as an improvised after-dinner game using a champagne-cork ball, cigar-box lids as bats and piles of books as a net.
The Ping-Pong Association was formed in 1921 but changed its name to ‘International Table Tennis Federation’ in 1926. In 1933 the ‘U.S. Table Tennis Federation was established.
Table tennis federation of India or in short TTFI was established in Kolkata in 1937. It is the central body of the administration and promotion of table tennis in India. TTFI formerly known as All India Table Tennis Federation (AITTA) got rechristened after the country got independence. Since, then it has been putting sincere effort in promoting and upbringing the standard of Table tennis in India. TTFI is an active member of the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF).
Today this indoor game is also very popular in India as it requires less space. Even offices can omit the facilities required for this and many international talents have emerged. It is an Olympic sport.
General Rules of Table Tennis
- The playing surface is the top surface of the table which should be of rectangular shape 2.74 m long and 1.525 m wide. This playing surface should be 76 cm above the floor horizontally.
- The edges of the table top should not be included in the playing surface.
- Any material may be used to manufacture the playing surface but when a standard ball is dropped on it from a height of 30 cm it must bounce to a height of 23 cm.
- A vertical net must be used to divide the playing surface into 2 equal courts. This net should run parallel to the end lines, and be continuous throughout the area of each court.
- The playing surface must be of dark color but shall have a white side line with a width of 2 cm, each 2.74 m along the edge and a white end line with a width of 2 cm with every 1.525 m edge.
- A white center line of 3 mm width should be drawn to divide the court into 2 equal half-courts in doubles. This line should run parallel to the side lines. The center-line is considered a part of each right quasi-court.
- The net, its suspension, and the supporting posts including the clamps that attach them to the table are included in the net assembly.
- A cord must be attached to suspend the trap. This string should be attached to a height of 15.25 cm at each end and upright post. The border of the post outside the side line can be 15.25 cm.
- The bottom of the net should be close to the playing surface and the end of the net should be near the support post.
Specification of Field and Sports Equipment
The table is rectangular in shape and is made of wood. The surface must provide desired bounce to the ball. It should be painted in deep green colour. The borders of the table must have 2 cms wide white lines all around but they don’t play any role in the game. For doubles matches the table is divided in two halves.
|Length of the table
|Width of the table
|Thickness of the table
|Height of the table from the floor
|Length of the net
|Height of the net from surface of the table
|Diameter of the ball
|Weight of the ball
|Color of the ball
|White or Orange
|Material of the ball
|Celluloid or plastic
National Competitions of Table Tennis
- Burna Velock Cup
- Jai Luxmi Cup
- India Cup
- Indira Cup
- Padmavati Cup
- Raj Kumari Challenge Cup
- Kamla Ramanujam Trophy
- Intab Cup (Mini Junior National)
- Corbilon Cup (World women’s team event)
- Swatheling Cup (World men’s team event)
- Iran Cup ( World men’s doubles)
- W.J. Pope Trophy (World women’s doubles)
- Haidusac Cup (World mixed doubles)
- G. Geist Cup (World women’s event)
- Saint Bridewall Cup (World men’s event)
- U. Thant Cup
- Golden Cup
- Electra Gold Cup
- Grand Prix (International event)
- 555 World Cup (International event)