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Celebrated Champions of Table Tennis Host Engaging Seminar at 2018 WVC

By Matt Hetherington | June 20, 2018, 8:38 p.m. (ET)

A rest day in the competition as the qualifications for singles and doubles ended and on Thursday the main draws begin. Though most went in search of thrills and sights across the magnificent landscape of Las Vegas, whether it be down the famous Las Vegas strip or out to the awe-inspiring Grand Canyon and red rock, a select few were drawn to the competition hall.

After thousands had poured through the hall for competition it seemed relatively peaceful inside today - throughout the day people steadily trickled in and out for practice sessions, but the main draw card was at the Joola booth.

A unique opportunity presented itself for the 70-80 individuals who found themselves seated around the small demonstration court at the Joola booth, indeed more came and went throughout the special presentation which spanned a couple of hours.

German National Team Coach Joerg Rosskopf and one of the world's defensive greats, Chen Weixing, were the honorary guests and put on an informative, engaging and friendly show.

Both players individually first sat through Question and Answer sessions, with topics ranging from the state of the German National Team (for Rosskopf) to how to defeat China and how to select table tennis equipment. The most valued part of the seminar was the personal nature of it all, legends of the sport just an arms reach away and actively engaging with the guests who came to participate.

The atmosphere was light and enjoyable, one guest asked about the future of the German team, to which Rossi humorously responded that he was happy to keep the two experienced players - Boll and Ovtcharov, but was searching for a third player and was looking at the veteran participants in Las Vegas for options. 

The face to face time was indeed a rare opportunity and one relished by all those who attended, with many questions asked and answered - although one caused some problems.

How can the German team, who have performed well to be among the top teams in the world, defeat China. With a big smile and much laughter, Rosskopf said there was no real answer to this question and it was yet to be discovered. "We just continue trying" he laughed. 

After the question and answer sessions with both players, each individual had the opportunity to take a photo with the two stars, before the educational aspect of the event began. 

Rosskopf gave an interactive seminar on service, inviting players to come up and return different serves, whilst demonstrating different methods for mastering the service game. He also actively engaged questions from the audience - it was a very open and two sided presentation.

Chen Weixing of course spoke on his specialized field - defending and using long pimple rubber. He delved into different strokes from chopping to serve receiving and even using long pips to attack. This was a very specific topic which there were many questions on. Chen was happy to answer and respond to everyone.

In the end a very satisfied group of onlookers departed to enjoy the rest of their day before the launch event for the ITTF World Veterans Tour tonight at the Brooklyn Bowl. To have this face to face time with players who have been admired over the decades will be an incredibly cherished moment for many who attended. 

A special thank you to Joerg, Weixing and the Joola team for organizing a fantastic event.