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11 Questions with Tahl Leibovitz

By USATT | May 19, 2015, 12 a.m. (ET)

Tahl Leibovitz

USATT Insider poses 11 questions to 4 x US Paralympian Tahl Leibovitz.

11 Questions with Tahl Leibovitz

Why do you play?  

To test myself, to challenge myself and to battle against myself. 

Which is your favorite tournament? 

USA National Championships 

Who is your primary nemesis?  


What is your favorite game tactic to score? 

Backhand opening, middle, out the forehand hand, then middle again, then forehand smash! 

Thoughts on the Poly Ball

I prefer the 38mm ball overall, but I do like the poly ball better then the 40mm celluloid ball. 

Toughest Loss?

2006 Para World Championships Open Bronze Medal Match up 7-4 in the final game against Stanislaw Fraczyk.  

Greatest Wins/Accomplishments?

Tahl Leibovitz1996 Paralympic Gold Medal in Atlanta, completion of my book "Ping-Pong for Fighters," and earned MA at Queens College (CUNY) and MSW at NYU. 

How you prepare for a tournament?  

I start preparing for tournaments in the beginning of the year.  I usually focus on 4-5 important tournaments that I would like to play my best.  I use other tournaments to help me prepare for the important tournaments.  I do serve practice 3-5 hours a week.  Mainly I practice for specific players.  I try and adapt my style to give players I will be facing more, difficulty.  

When you see a new player at the club, what do you do?  

I usually engage them in conversation and try to be helpful. 

Player you would most like to play in a tournament? 

I would like to play against myself because I know exactly what I would do to win the match.  

If you had to face Jimmy Butler/Lily Zhang/Crystal Wang/Kanak Jha what would your game plan be?  

Change of pace, speed and spin for both Crystal and Lily, I have not watched Kanak play all that much, so I have no idea how to play against him.  For Jimmy, I would have to do 6-7 things correctly to be competitive against him.  

Related Athletes

head shot

Tahl Leibovitz

Table Tennis