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How many Penhold players at WTTC this year?

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    Posted: 05/31/2017 at 12:27pm
I was just wondering what the percentage of penhold players (or for that matter, non shakehand players) are participating in the WTTC this year?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ChichoFicho Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/31/2017 at 2:01pm
less than 1%. As a result of the ITTF's idiotic changes of the rules in the next WTTC there won't be a single penholder.

Edited by ChichoFicho - 05/31/2017 at 2:02pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote acong Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/31/2017 at 2:13pm
Originally posted by ChichoFicho ChichoFicho wrote:

less than 1%. As a result of the ITTF's idiotic changes of the rules in the next WTTC there won't be a single penholder.

What? More changes? Any details?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Matt Pimple Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/31/2017 at 2:13pm
Originally posted by ChichoFicho ChichoFicho wrote:

As a result of the ITTF's idiotic changes of the rules in the next WTTC there won't be a single penholder.

Would you mind to elaborate a little bit more on that, please? Which rule caused penholders to "disappear"? Last time I checked Xu Xin is still doing fine and there seems to have been a trend since a while of the numbers of penholders going down.

P.S.: Looks like acong beat me to it!

Edited by Matt Pimple - 05/31/2017 at 2:16pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote wanchope Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/31/2017 at 2:19pm
I think mainly it's the adoption of the new ball and the serving rules, reducing the impact of spin and fast attack. Now games are more played away from the table, where penholders are disadvantaged. Xu Xin is not doing very fine. This championships is probably his last chance in the CNT. After him, there's only one penholder in the first team, Xue Fei. So yes, penholders are disappearing from the professional level. You can probably still see them among the amatuear players.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bbkon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/31/2017 at 2:35pm
Originally posted by wanchope wanchope wrote:

I think mainly it's the adoption of the new ball and the serving rules, reducing the impact of spin and fast attack. Now games are more played away from the table, where penholders are disadvantaged. Xu Xin is not doing very fine. This championships is probably his last chance in the CNT. After him, there's only one penholder in the first team, Xue Fei. So yes, penholders are disappearing from the professional level. You can probably still see them among the amatuear players.


you re wrong there are at least 3 male cpens beside xue fei at cnt
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Matt Pimple Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/31/2017 at 2:37pm
Originally posted by wanchope wanchope wrote:

I think mainly it's the adoption of the new ball and the serving rules, reducing the impact of spin and fast attack. Now games are more played away from the table, where penholders are disadvantaged.


Like my old six sigma teacher always said "Show me the data!". Do you have any data that shows that since the poly ball (a very recent event, I'd like to add) the number of penholders in international competitions has gone down? Are you telling me that the game is played away from the table since the new ball? The loop-loop game away from the table has been played for quite a while and not just since a couple of years when the poly ball was introduced so that can't be a cause. Also, if the impact of spin is less, as you pointed out, wouldn't that favor classic short pips penhold hitters? I did not see a recent advent of more short pips hitters, neither internationally nor on a local level at the club I visit.

P.S.: On last check Xu Xin is #3 in the world!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote wanchope Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/31/2017 at 2:51pm
Originally posted by Matt Pimple Matt Pimple wrote:

Originally posted by wanchope wanchope wrote:

I think mainly it's the adoption of the new ball and the serving rules, reducing the impact of spin and fast attack. Now games are more played away from the table, where penholders are disadvantaged.


Like my old six sigma teacher always said "Show me the data!". Do you have any data that shows that since the poly ball (a very recent event, I'd like to add) the number of penholders in international competitions has gone down? Are you telling me that the game is played away from the table since the new ball? The loop-loop game away from the table has been played for quite a while and not just since a couple of years when the poly ball was introduced so that can't be a cause. Also, if the impact of spin is less, as you pointed out, wouldn't that favor classic short pips penhold hitters? I did not see a recent advent of more short pips hitters, neither internationally nor on a local level at the club I visit.

P.S.: On last check Xu Xin is #3 in the world!


I don't have the data and neither do you. If someone wants to start a research, this could be an interesting topic. All we are discussing here is our observation and basic reasoning. Look at the number of penholders at the top level compared to 20 years ago or 10 years ago, before the serving rules and with the smaller balls. Changes are graduate, but it's been hard for penholders to keep up at the top level.
In terms of short pips, it's too early to tell, but I do see it coming back as a result of the new ball. This type of changes takes time, you can't expect people who's been using the smooth rubbers for years switching to pips right away. However new players will probably pick up the short pips. For this we'll need to wait and see.

Edited by wanchope - 05/31/2017 at 2:53pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bbkon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/31/2017 at 2:59pm
Originally posted by Matt Pimple Matt Pimple wrote:

Originally posted by wanchope wanchope wrote:

I think mainly it's the adoption of the new ball and the serving rules, reducing the impact of spin and fast attack. Now games are more played away from the table, where penholders are disadvantaged.


Like my old six sigma teacher always said "Show me the data!". Do you have any data that shows that since the poly ball (a very recent event, I'd like to add) the number of penholders in international competitions has gone down? Are you telling me that the game is played away from the table since the new ball? The loop-loop game away from the table has been played for quite a while and not just since a couple of years when the poly ball was introduced so that can't be a cause. Also, if the impact of spin is less, as you pointed out, wouldn't that favor classic short pips penhold hitters? I did not see a recent advent of more short pips hitters, neither internationally nor on a local level at the club I visit.

P.S.: On last check Xu Xin is #3 in the world!


last year a chinese penholder won an asian junior tournament
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote wanchope Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/31/2017 at 3:04pm
Originally posted by bbkon bbkon wrote:

Originally posted by Matt Pimple Matt Pimple wrote:

Originally posted by wanchope wanchope wrote:

I think mainly it's the adoption of the new ball and the serving rules, reducing the impact of spin and fast attack. Now games are more played away from the table, where penholders are disadvantaged.


Like my old six sigma teacher always said "Show me the data!". Do you have any data that shows that since the poly ball (a very recent event, I'd like to add) the number of penholders in international competitions has gone down? Are you telling me that the game is played away from the table since the new ball? The loop-loop game away from the table has been played for quite a while and not just since a couple of years when the poly ball was introduced so that can't be a cause. Also, if the impact of spin is less, as you pointed out, wouldn't that favor classic short pips penhold hitters? I did not see a recent advent of more short pips hitters, neither internationally nor on a local level at the club I visit.

P.S.: On last check Xu Xin is #3 in the world!


last year a chinese penholder won an asian junior tournament


I definitely hope penholders will still bloom. I'm a penholder myself. But if you think about what are the advantages and disadvantages of penholders vs. shakehanders, I think it's hard not to say that the chances are going slim for us.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote apenholder Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/31/2017 at 10:57pm
Since I've researched this quite a bit recently:

Men: Xu Xin, Wong Chung Ting, Wang Zengyi, Cazuo Matsumoto, Jesus Cantero, Chang Hoi Wa.  
Women: Ni Xialian

Did I miss any?  Possible I missed a few.  

There are quite a few others that have competed internationally in ittf in the past year or so but are not competing in the world championships.

So total that's 6/336 men, 1/274 women, 1.8% men, .36% women,   1.15% overall.


Edited by apenholder - 06/01/2017 at 12:33am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote amateur Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/31/2017 at 11:22pm
Originally posted by apenholder apenholder wrote:

No women that I'm aware of.  

Ni Xia Lian is still playing, and doing well.

Normally Tin-Tin Ho would be there, but England didn't send any women - why?

Shan Xiaona is a top player but not eligible for WTTC.

For the USA, Jiaqi Zheng decided not to try out this year (just like Feng Yijun).


Edited by amateur - 05/31/2017 at 11:35pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote apenholder Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/01/2017 at 12:30am
Originally posted by amateur amateur wrote:

Originally posted by apenholder apenholder wrote:

No women that I'm aware of.  

Ni Xia Lian is still playing, and doing well.

Normally Tin-Tin Ho would be there, but England didn't send any women - why?

Shan Xiaona is a top player but not eligible for WTTC.

For the USA, Jiaqi Zheng decided not to try out this year (just like Feng Yijun).

I didn't realize she was still playing.  I'll update my post

The others I was aware of but they aren't participating don't count
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bbkon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/01/2017 at 12:54am
Originally posted by apenholder apenholder wrote:

Originally posted by amateur amateur wrote:

Originally posted by apenholder apenholder wrote:

No women that I'm aware of.  


Ni Xia Lian is still playing, and doing well.

Normally Tin-Tin Ho would be there, but England didn't send any women - why?

Shan Xiaona is a top player but not eligible for WTTC.

For the USA, Jiaqi Zheng decided not to try out this year (just like Feng Yijun).



I didn't realize she was still playing.  I'll update my post

The others I was aware of but they aren't participating don't count


cnt penholders

1 zhao zihao
2 fan shengpeng
3 yan sheng
4 zheng pengfei
5 sun chen
5 zhou xintong
6 xue fei
7 xx
8 wang ¿¿
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jk92 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/01/2017 at 11:35am
Wu (Zhang) Jiaji has been beating a lot of players in the french league, He's a former CNT, but in recent world tour events he's been creamed by current CNT players
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bbkon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/02/2017 at 12:13am
Originally posted by jk92 jk92 wrote:

Wu (Zhang) Jiaji has been beating a lot of players in the french league, He's a former CNT, but in recent world tour events he's been creamed by current CNT players


forgot lay jianfang from australia.anybody knows what is using ni xialiang in this wttc?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ttplace Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/14/2017 at 10:20am
so many are doing well
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Believer Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/14/2017 at 7:28pm
Frankly, I don't think that any rules change mess up the pen holders. When we switch from 38mm to 40mm balls, Wang Hao and Ma Lin are top five in the world. Now with plastic balls, Xu Xin is top three. IMHO, the reason why there aren't that many pen holders is because it is more difficult to play the style. First, you have to cover the whole court with your FH unless you play like Wang Hao with a strong Reverse Penhold BH. Or you will be picked on the BH side if you play the traditional BH. But at the amateur level, there are plenty of penholders out there. But to play at the Pro level, it will be very demanding and the training to get there will be very tough. So not every one can commit to that. But is it disappearing, I don't think so. Even at the semipro level, there should be plenty. I start learning the game using pen hold, but I am too lazy to play the style and I switch to shake hand style. A really good pen holder should not have problem with any shake hander. But the effort to reach a very good pen hold play is larger than a shake hand style. So this is why you don't see many of them at the pro level.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote zeio Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/14/2017 at 7:46pm
Wang Hao didn't make his debut until 2002.

All the blaming on the rule changes are truly unfounded. Penholders suffered a "holocaust" in China after the WTTC 1989. Japanese penholders from Japan were almost extinct and those from Korea persevered with great difficulty.

Yasukazu Murakami revealed in an interview after Rio that Japanese penhold players back then were stubbornly insistent that forehand was the ONLY way to win and backhand was considered evil.

He added that the world was already experimenting with new styles using the shakehand grip and backhand attacks were on the rise. The Jpen style completely fell behind.

Quote 村上 一方、「打倒日本」を掲げた世界各国は、どんどん進化していきました。当時の日本はペンホルダーのラケットが主流で、フォアさえ強ければ勝てると妄信。バックハンドは“邪道”とさえ言われていました。

 しかし、世界ではシェークハンドのラケットを使い、バックハンドでも攻撃する選手が増えていきました。世界は、戦術・技術的にも新しいスタイルを次々に開発。気がついたら日本のスタイルは完全に時代遅れのものになってしまっていたんです。


Edited by zeio - 06/14/2017 at 8:06pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote onehander Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/14/2017 at 8:02pm
There aren't that many penholders because there aren't that many coaches that teach the style.  It's no different from the tennis one handed backhand.  You can say it's inferior to the two handed backhand, but some of the greatest players in history were one handed.  Again, coaches today  simply don't teach the style.  

It's more a matter of learning proper technique.  If two people with no prior training picked up a penhold or shakehand blade, perhaps shakehand would be more intuitive.  But given correct training, they are equally effective.

A Viking Long Sword or a Samurai Katana?  They require different grips and different techniques.  

Xu Xin has reached number 1 in the world before.  He's case in point that penhold can still be good.  
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