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Potential changes to equipment rules

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    Posted: 02/17/2024 at 5:20pm
It's been a long time since i've written an article about equipment, but felt the need to share my thoughts about some changes that the ITTF will vote on next week.


I don't use any social media; feel free to share if you find it interesting.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Lightspin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/18/2024 at 9:58pm
You have a very interesting and informative blog.  Definitely worth checking out.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote kagin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/19/2024 at 8:49pm
Thanks! Do you have an opinion on the propositions? It seems pointless to propose taking rackets apart without testing for boosters, but maybe i'm the crazy one.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote haggisv Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/20/2024 at 12:53am
Your reasoning makes a lot of sense to me. I think some ITTF member's obsession with the rules makes them lose perspective on what's really important for the sport.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Lightspin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/20/2024 at 1:27am
Originally posted by kagin kagin wrote:

Thanks! Do you have an opinion on the propositions? It seems pointless to propose taking rackets apart without testing for boosters, but maybe i'm the crazy one.


Taking apart the rackets after a tournament could be a tricky thing.  Who would take them apart? On some of the older butterfly carbon rackets, if extreme care isn't taken when removing rubber, the wood will peel off and the racket will be destroyed.  I would hate for an ITTF staff member to get screamed at for harming a racket.  If the player is required to disassemble their own racket in front of officials, that might be better.

With that being said, people boost left and right which is probably the biggest problem and if the ITTF doesn't tackle this issue, why even bother disassembling the racket like you said. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote liulin04 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/20/2024 at 2:33am
Originally posted by kagin kagin wrote:

It's been a long time since i've written an article about equipment, but felt the need to share my thoughts about some changes that the ITTF will vote on next week.


I don't use any social media; feel free to share if you find it interesting.

Very interesting read.  To put it bluntly, this is to target the Chinese and Korean players who play with boosters on their Hurricane 3, and the whiners are either the Mizutani or European type of players who claim to play with a disadvantage, when I'm sure their National or Specially issued versions of Dignics or Tenergies probably have boosters in them as well.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote jfolsen Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/20/2024 at 11:56am
What a timely article given the events at Busan in the USA vs Kazakhstan match.

And I am also surprised at the proposition increase thickness for rubber. For decades the chant from the ITTF has been to slow down the shots and make it more friendly to television.


Edited by jfolsen - 02/20/2024 at 12:02pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TwiddleDee Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/20/2024 at 5:39pm
How many players would play with hard sponge Hurricane rubbers if they couldn't boost them ? The difference between boosted and un-boosted is night and day. Or, better yet, how many players on this forum actually think that they can purchase rubbers that are used by the Chinese National Team ? Good luck with trying to ban boosting.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Lightspin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/20/2024 at 11:41pm
Kagin, you should change your name on the forum to "The Prophet" as like jfolsen said, your post directly applied to the match between the USA and Kazakhstan. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote stiltt Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/21/2024 at 12:13am
This mess is the main reason table tennis reamains a game for the initiated, I do not mean this in a negative way. It takes a long apprenticeship to belong and be at ease, to know where to go and what to work on, to even understand how it works. The table tennis community is very much a sectarian group of which becoming an established member is a fitness trail if not an assault course. It's all good but there is no way out.

Imagine a system where the manufacturers send the rackets that players want to the organizers beforehand so competitors play with what the tourney give them. It's impossible. A rubber has to be broken in, a bad glue job is possible, cheating the other way around may happen...no way! if not that tho, we'll live in the same messy lil' community forever and I see nothing wrong about that, we do it for the game, not for the money.

I am waiting for the time an ATP like hardbat tour will take the world by surprise and create a couple hundreds millionaires to top a huge community of people who will understand what's going on and join in masses because it's easy to get in. Heck, make it bare wood 1-ply paddles with higher nets!!! Big smile Just like pickleball, it won't be my thing because spin is really something fantastic to deal with but I am prepared to see another similar sport waiving hello as they pass us on the road to success while we are constantly changing the wheels on the shoulder lane.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mykonos96 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/21/2024 at 9:09am
Originally posted by liulin04 liulin04 wrote:

Originally posted by kagin kagin wrote:

It's been a long time since i've written an article about equipment, but felt the need to share my thoughts about some changes that the ITTF will vote on next week.


I don't use any social media; feel free to share if you find it interesting.

Very interesting read.  To put it bluntly, this is to target the Chinese and Korean players who play with boosters on their Hurricane 3, and the whiners are either the Mizutani or European type of players who claim to play with a disadvantage, when I'm sure their National or Specially issued versions of Dignics or Tenergies probably have boosters in them as well.

I have a pic of mizutani raquet  in  2010  where it shows clearly that the edges are curled that proves that the rubber is boosted.


Edited by mykonos96 - 02/21/2024 at 9:14am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TwiddleDee Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/21/2024 at 10:25am
The ITTF could create a rule to have all the players at major tournaments put their rubbers on their paddles the day before, under supervision, and keep the paddles until match time. That "might" slow down boosting, but we know that will never happen.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote qpskfec Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/22/2024 at 3:02pm
Adding 0.05 mm to rubber thickness is about 1%, this is a non issue. This request is most likely from the rubber makers to allow for greater tolerance in manufacturing. There's no real practical impact to the game.

As many have mentioned, don't propose requirements that cannot be easily tested. Don't fixate on boosters. For VOC there is a reliable portable machine based on well established science on what a VOC is. Boosters, no, what exactly is the precise scientific definition of booster?

A few years ago in the ITTF meeting notes, it stated that someone was tasked with researching booster detection technology. (no, it wasn't igor)

The person came back and stated that it was not possible because that the only tester that might work was a huge piece of lab equipment that was nowhere near portable. ITTF would have to fund research into a portable unit that may never work.

Make simple, easy to follow rules. Spend money wisely to grow the game and bring in fans. I would vote for spending $$$ on video production quality. There are many videos where the lighting, camera angles, direction are just bad.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BeaverMD Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/26/2024 at 11:39am
The racket disassembly proposal is a hoax.  We, the amateurs, are being hoodwinked.

Here's what's really happening: the 2008 speed glue ban gave the manufacturers a windfall in profits.  Everyone bought composite blades, Spring Sponge, Tensors, all the $14 rubbers in zeropong that promised speed glue effect.  The companies want this again so they rely on the ITTF to create more rules that will require players to purchase more.  The bigger ball in 2000 made players buy faster composites, the 2014 plastic ball made players buy harder sponge tackier surface rubbers.  Not a bad profit margin but not the same as 2008.  So here's what's going to happen:

The ITTF will introduce the racket disassembly rule.  It will get voted down after a bunch of complaints.  Now that all the athletes are riled up, they will then say "ok, let's compromise" and introduce a different rule, the multi-racket rule.  The goal is to "eliminate rackets failing the pre-inspection" thick sponge, etc.  The real goal is to get you to spend more.  They want it to be like tennis where players use 6 to 12 rackets and not assembled by the player but a "certified racket assembler" from a company.

The first and only domino that needs to fall is the best team in the world, the CNT.  Petra will ask LGL "we want players to be like Nadal and Federer walking in with a big racket bag.  We will not ban boosters.  What do you think?" LGL will agree because of two reasons:
1. The CNT has five deliverables.  Two golds, two silvers, and hopefully another gold in the XD.  They failed in XD last time.  Don't expect it again as this will be addressed.  They are ahead of the curve and as long as none of these five deliverables are disrupted, ITTF can try to make all the money they want.
2. He knows that even if they dissected a racket and found boosters, they won't know if it was from the factory or a player applied the booster in the hotel room.

LGL will offer a trial player, someone who hasn't won a major but is recognizable, let's say Zhou Qihao.  ZQH will enter a tournament with a racket-shaped TT case that holds six rackets sort of like Djokovic.  After the match, he will make a statement that goes "it was really nice having a fresh racket every game.  Thanks to the DHS custom shop for assembling my rackets for me.  I am confident that my rackets will never fail inspection."  In addition, the ITTF will require just like in tennis where new balls are opened every two games.  So new set of 12 balls each cycle.

Players like us will grumble so the ITTF will release a statement that goes "we will leave it up to each NGB to decide what they enforce".  Petra only has to nod her head and the USATT already knows what to do.  The USATT will release a statement stating "we have thought long and hard (they didn't) and the multi-racket rule is the step in the right direction towards professionalism blah blah blah".

They will start off with maybe only the Open event, but will quickly require maybe U2400 and up.  Now, at this point if you are 1800 you are in a conundrum because you want to enter the U2200 or U2300 which has kids what want to play for the Worlds/Olympic team.  They are required to have multiple rackets assembled by certified racket assemblers, so you should be too.  So eventually, everyone that enters a tournament has to have a bunch of rackets. You will complain like in 2000, 2008, and 2014.  You will say rackets need break-in period, etc. but in the end You. Will. Comply.

So don't worry about getting your racket disassembled.  The ITTF does not care.  They can't find boosters nor are they able to.  Go ahead and boost your $10 Palio Hidden Dragon and just say it's factory boosted to your opponent.  But they do want you to be like a tennis player and bring multiple rackets.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jt99sf Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/26/2024 at 1:44pm
Are they proposing to use a different racket for each game ?

So I can use inverted for the first game, pips for the second and hardbat for the third ?


Edited by jt99sf - 02/26/2024 at 2:03pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote igorponger Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03/04/2024 at 2:03pm

Hi, Kagin



As being a member-in-power within USATT you have a decisive say in the USATT internal discussions and matters, so we call for your special attention to the low friction rubber materials as now widely used in the many USATT competitions. As an Ittf retired official, you must be aware that the low friction pimples-out rubbers is a material currently prohibited by the ITTF written directives since the year 2019.

By this, we kindly suggest that USATT should adapt the friction testing device for some domestic competitions, primarily for the
US Nationals.

Just a good example to note,--the Italian FITET has been employing this device for years in their national leagues.

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Edited by igorponger - 03/06/2024 at 5:08am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote yogi_bear Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03/04/2024 at 5:22pm
boosting for Chinese players H3 rubbers are done by the factory itself nowadays which still passes max limit for voc component which is a loophole they are abusing. unless ittf can stop the factory boosting itself, this will still continue. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BRS Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03/04/2024 at 5:43pm
Originally posted by BeaverMD BeaverMD wrote:

You. Will. Comply.

More likely - You Will Let Your USATT Membership Expire.  The last 10 people who actually pay usatt will finally give it up as a bad job.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mykonos96 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03/05/2024 at 9:27am
Originally posted by yogi_bear yogi_bear wrote:

boosting for Chinese players H3 rubbers are done by the factory itself nowadays which still passes max limit for voc component which is a loophole they are abusing. unless ittf can stop the factory boosting itself, this will still continue. 

All rubbers are factory boosted, Rakza,Tenergy etc.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TwiddleDee Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03/05/2024 at 1:45pm
If anyone on this forum, who is not connected to the Chinese national team, who knows how to obtain the H3 that the their team uses, please post a link. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote yogi_bear Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03/05/2024 at 10:36pm
Originally posted by mykonos96 mykonos96 wrote:

Originally posted by yogi_bear yogi_bear wrote:

boosting for Chinese players H3 rubbers are done by the factory itself nowadays which still passes max limit for voc component which is a loophole they are abusing. unless ittf can stop the factory boosting itself, this will still continue. 

All rubbers are factory boosted, Rakza,Tenergy etc.

the factory boosting i am talking about is not the regular factory boosting i am talking about. i have in my previous posts talked about a a different boosting used by pro rubbers. i also have posts and topics that all rubbers are factory boosted i think as early as 2012 i have already posted this. 


Edited by yogi_bear - 03/05/2024 at 10:37pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mykonos96 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03/07/2024 at 11:11am
Originally posted by TwiddleDee TwiddleDee wrote:

If anyone on this forum, who is not connected to the Chinese national team, who knows how to obtain the H3 that the their team uses, please post a link. 

Somebody got the real H3 nat from chinese player zhou you. He was at the worlds and the talked to the coach and for 90$ went to the DHS boot and got the rubber in black bag.

Btw any knows where the info about the new pips aspect ratio and the specs that pips must comply?


Edited by mykonos96 - 03/07/2024 at 11:13am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TwiddleDee Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03/07/2024 at 5:19pm
That's probably about the only way to obtain the real H3. I have a friend who has a relative who is somehow connected to the National Team. He was able to obtain the real H3. It played much differently than did the H3 sold to the general public. The speed and spin that it was able to generate was quite amazing.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote yogi_bear Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03/08/2024 at 4:15pm
Originally posted by TwiddleDee TwiddleDee wrote:

That's probably about the only way to obtain the real H3. I have a friend who has a relative who is somehow connected to the National Team. He was able to obtain the real H3. It played much differently than did the H3 sold to the general public. The speed and spin that it was able to generate was quite amazing.

Try to contact Tony's table Tennis here. Even some pros buy their National H3 from him 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BeaverMD Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03/11/2024 at 6:04am
Originally posted by yogi_bear yogi_bear wrote:

boosting for Chinese players H3 rubbers are done by the factory 

Jinkiism Jinki Laugh GIF - Jinkiism Jinki Laugh Jinki GIFs
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BeaverMD Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03/11/2024 at 6:10am
Originally posted by jt99sf jt99sf wrote:

Are they proposing to use a different racket for each game ?

That's correct.  One racket each game.  A new 12-pack of balls every two games.



Originally posted by jt99sf jt99sf wrote:

So I can use inverted for the first game, pips for the second and hardbat for the third ?

You can do that, absolutely! As long as each racket is put together by a "certified racket assembler", no problem.  You will need to pay a surcharge for "non-uniform rackets" which is 25 USD per racket.  The proceeds will go to umpires' hotel and per diem so they can continue to call fault for legal serves and allow clearly illegal serves.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jt99sf Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03/11/2024 at 12:47pm
And how does one become a ‘certified racket assembler’ ? Can we no longer glue our own rackets ?

Sounds like another revenue stream for the usatt 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote stiltt Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03/11/2024 at 12:53pm
Originally posted by BeaverMD BeaverMD wrote:

Originally posted by yogi_bear yogi_bear wrote:

boosting for Chinese players H3 rubbers are done by the factory 

Jinkiism Jinki Laugh GIF - Jinkiism Jinki Laugh Jinki GIFs

ITTF expecting more revenue

Chinese Man Asian Guy GIF by Micropharms


Edited by stiltt - 03/11/2024 at 12:53pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote yogi_bear Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03/12/2024 at 1:46am
Originally posted by BeaverMD BeaverMD wrote:

Originally posted by yogi_bear yogi_bear wrote:

boosting for Chinese players H3 rubbers are done by the factory 

Jinkiism Jinki Laugh GIF - Jinkiism Jinki Laugh Jinki GIFs

for those who do not know about this, this has been a long done as a way to avoid the restrictions of racket control wherein the parts per million of voc are still within the ITTF limits and also not exceed the thickness when applying a different booster for pro rubbers. a certain brand that i know also practices this as they use a different tuner or booster for their rubbers that are being supplied to their sponsored pro players. and yes, i have come to have a chance to own a few of those pro rubbers for a top 10 non-Chinese player in the past that i regret using because it is very hard to come by, being too expensive to produce for mass production and plays very different from normal equivalent of the rubbers for commercial uses. If some still do not get the idea of factory boosting to avoid ittf restrictions and get the logic of it then I do not know how to explain it further... 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote stiltt Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03/12/2024 at 2:10pm
The boosting issue is like the speed glue effect of modern rubbers, built-in. The way the game works, there is a way to cheat and for as long there are ways to cheat to get an edge, we'll have cheaters. 

It's similar to the drugs problem: anti drugs laws artificially inflates their price and that creates a business opportunity. Where there is a business opportunity, there is a vacuum that sucks in people interested in making easy money. If we send that person to jail, the vacuum comes back and sucks in somebody else. The problem remains. If we think of all the money spent in drug repression (police work, prosecution, jail facilities etc...) and what we lose on the way (corrupt officials working against the system they are supposed to upend), it's a total fail; and we never had that many drugs in the streets.

The solution for table tennis? either legalize boosting again or change the rules about material so we can still spin the ball but can't change the properties of the rubbers. A sponge made out of a material that can't be boosted sounds like a hard thing to create though or is it? 

Anyway, in today's world we sit in between 2 wobbling chairs with our spinning heads keeping track of too many constraints. We want to choose 3 between fast, good and cheap and we keep splitting hairs creating two issues by resolving a third one.

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