The perfect modern defender

Table Tennis Discussion

Last updated 3 months ago

Tim Hunger

Tim Hunger Asked 4 months ago

Hi guys, I have put a lot of thought into this and watched the video "Ding Song Chopping Table Tennis" many times. My conclusions are that the perfect chopper should always attack on his forehand, chop on the backhand, but if your opponent plays a short or too high Ball,  you should attack it with your backhand. You should have the strong serves of Chen Xinhua. I also concluded you should use Medium Pips on your backhand. Ding Song said he isn't sure how they should receive serves. And I also haven't found it out. Can you please help me. Ding Song said the return should put pressure on your opponent. But a push can't really do that. You can also watch the 2 videos yourself if you want. You can find them on YouTube if you just search for: Ding Song Chopping Table Tennis. Thanks in advance.

Alois Rosario

Alois Rosario Answered 3 months ago

Hi Tim,

Thanks for your thoughts.

I think defenders come in all shapes and forms and with a whole lot of variation.

I don't think you can make any rules about the perfect defender.  Variation in each ball and unpredictability if difficult to play against.  A lot use long pimples on the backhand.

The return like any shot in the game aims to put your opponent under pressure if you can.

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Thoughts on this question


D K Posted 3 months ago

Tim,as an amateur defender myself,I also think there is no 100% rule.
Maybe closest is that a defender,no matter if modern,should have consistent defense.
Otherwise I would not call such a player a defender at all.
Also,the major key of defender's success is variation.
Thus,I see perfect defender as someone who as the ability to both defend and attack on both sides to at least some extent.
"Always attack" is not very variably sounding thing.
Defense is an unique,variable and different style and sometimes even professional players find it difficult to play against chopping game.
So I would rather say "always attack THE OPPORTUNITIES".
"Always attack" is more an opponent-dependent thing. Some players are good blockers and like fast balls coming to them all the time.
Some players are more power oriented and may not like heavy spin balls coming to them.
Some players have good lift and variation of loops.
Some have worse footwork or tactical sense etc.

Even the thing with Medium pips is also a personal preferrence.
Note that Gionis Panagiotis and Ruwen Filus,who are the best ranked defenders,actually use Butterfly Feint rubbers with thin sponge.
Feint rubbers are long pimple rubbers.
To compare,Ma Te,the strongest current shortpips defender I know,is ranked much lower.
Thus,it is not about a bat,but how can you use it.
Gionis is very stable in terms of wings,meaning he does not twiddle too much.
Filus,on the other hand,twiddles a lot to combine his two rubbers,and he proves that this is a bypass around mediumpips,powerful enough to match other his level attackers.
Thus,this creates a second option.
Regarding Ma Te,I have seen only a few his matches but I think he twiddles a lot ,if he wants to attack with backhand,despite having shortpips.
Also,according to my knowledge,I support what Alois said: many of TOP defenders are still using lonpips. Not sure about women,but among men there are (to my knowledge) TWO men who defend using shortpips,apart from Ding Song,who already retired. Those two are Muramatsu Yuto and Ma Te.
Other (Gionis,Filus,Weixing,Joo Sae Hyuk,Shiono,Wang Xi,or from the retired ones Matsushita,Shibutani,Tsiokas) are all long pimple users,Tsiokas ad Shibutani even used OX longpips.

I should also comment on the serves receive you mentioned:
I am an amateur player,but I have already seen and also experienced many matches,where the receive's quality decided the match.
For example,I have played against about a 7y old girl (I was 20),who is considered a future supertalent. She had not reached her eight birthday since then,but still she is going to enter Women ExtraLeague (= level1, 1st highest league of my country) as a substitute member. In a rally combat,she was heavily defeating me 11:4 and 11:5 in the first two sets.
Then,I started playing on the first two balls and eventually,I was able to use her poor receiving skills to gain points,and also I used my own receives more tactically. Even the pushes. Extremely short and extremely long pushes can be also very effective,if placed to the elbow or to wide directions.
I won 3:2 (4:11,5:11,11:6,11:4,11:4)
Later on,I have succesfully used this tactic to clash with powerful tactical player of Division level (5th highest) and I lost only narrowly (I am Fourth District league level,that is 11th highest and 2nd lowest league).
So,note that I am not very powerful player,I have quite poor serve/receive and tactical skills,yet I was able to use it to win.

To show some another example,I have played with one of my new teammates,and he kept winning against me using similar strategies!
He is not a good server,but I was not able to win a point when I was serving!
Despite that he was not receiving very agressively!
He rarely used some flick or powershot.
He kept suddenly changing the length of his pushing receives,sometimes just performed a slow spin loop when I assumed my defending distance,forcing me to contact the ball under the table etc.
So even pushes can put pressure on your opponent,if you know when and how to use them!
And also,this is opponent-dependent as well.

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