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Terrific Table Tennis

What's so good about Table Tennis? | How to Play | Table Tennis Star

Did you know that "Whiff Waff", "Gossamer" and "Ping Pong" were all games that lead to the sport of Table Tennis?

Table Tennis began in the 1880's in England when people found a way to play tennis indoors during the winter. Bats were made from dried animal skins stretched over a wooden frame and balls were made of rubber or cork.

Today we play with plastic balls and rubber covered wooden bats. Table Tennis is 'officially' played in 140 countries in the World and has been an Olympic sport since 1988.
Read more about the history of Table Tennis.


What's so good about Table Tennis?

Lots and lots of teams turned up to compete in the New Zealand Schools Team Championships 2001 last month. Here's what a few of the competitors had to say...

Congratulations to Hutt Intermediate — winners of the Intermediate School section.

Table Tennis winners
Photo: North Shore Table Tennis

"It's fun!" Andrew Rieper, 12, Hutt Intermediate.

"My brother taught me to play, it's fun & exciting" Julia Niall, 12, Takapuna Normal Intermediate.

"I've played for three years, it's fun, exciting, challenging and you make new friends!" Sarah Barrie, 12, Wairau Intermediate.

"I taught myself how to play through trial and error, now I've been playing for two years" Julian Gray, 12, Murrays Bay Intermediate.

Northcote College Table Tennis TeamNorthcote College Table Tennis Team 2001 — winners of the Girls College Section.

Photo: North Shore Table Tennis


How to play.

Table Tennis can be played as 'singles' (two players) or 'doubles' (four players). You start the game with a serve where the ball must bounce first on your side of the table, go over the net, and bounce on your opponent's side of the table.

The object of the game is to score more points than your opponent — you score points when your opponent either

  • Misses the ball
  • Hits it off the table on the full
  • Hits it onto the net

The first player to reach 11 points wins.

Table tennis is great because it can be played indoors and you don't need much equipment.
All you need is:

  • A Bat — table tennis bat with sponge rubber on both sides
  • A Ball — table tennis ball or if you just beginning a bigger softer ball or semi-inflated balloon
  • A Table — a table that has a division marked at halfway by a net or a line

Want to join a Table Tennis Club?
Talk to someone in your area for more information.


Table Tennis Star

Tracey McLauchlan Name: Tracey McLauchlan
Sport: Table Tennis
School: My favourite years at school were intermediate (Sts Peter & Paul School, Lower Hutt) and in 7th Form at Sacred Heart College.
Message: People of all ages should strive to be successful in whatever they put their mind to. I had a simple beginning to my table tennis career and have achieved a lot from there. I keep a balanced life with study, work, family and social life."

How did you get into table tennis?
"My Dad used to drop my brother at Belmont Table Tennis Club on a Friday night. I came for the ride! After a while I insisted on staying when I saw all the kids having fun — from there I was spotted as having potential and started my table tennis career."

What do you love about table tennis?
"I love the long rallies — I like the way you have to have fast reactions and a good understanding of spin and touch."

"I enjoy the competitive nature of the sport, the tournaments, the trips away overseas and within New Zealand. I have met many different people whom I would not otherwise have met."

What are your dreams and goals?
One of my goals this year was to get a World Ranking and I achieved it! I am 394th in the world."

"My dream is to have the perfect game. I know this will never be totally possible but I continue to try to get as close as I can."

Sporting History

Commonwealth Teams Championships 2001, India — Bronze Medal

NZ Open Women's Doubles Championships 2000 — 1st Place

World Teams Championships 2000, Malaysia

Commonwealth Teams Championships 2000, Singapore — 3rd Place

New Zealand Open Women's Association Teams Competition 1997 & 1999

NZ Under 21 Championships 1999 — 1st Place Singles & Doubles

NZ Under 19 Championships 1998 — 1st Place Singles & Mixed

NZ Under 21 Championships 1998 — 2nd Place Singles

NZ Under 20 New Zealand Team 1998

Winner H. N. Ballinger Cup 1997 & 1998 — New Zealand Junior of the Year

New Zealand Open & Under 19 Association Teams Competition

Australian Junior Open Championships 1996 — NZ Team Capt. — 3 x Bronze

BCA in Economics & Econometrics at Victoria University

Link - up!

Check out Tracey at the New Zealand Open Championships 2001 (28 Sep — 6 October)

Table Tennis New Zealand

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