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2023 JOOLA North American Teams: TOURNAMENT REPORT

By: Jeff Nguyen

December 10, 2023

The 2023 JOOLA North American Teams took place November 24-26 at the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center in Washington, DC. There were 1056 players in 270 teams competing on nearly 200 tables. Austin Table Tennis sent 22 players that competed in 8 teams across 6 divisions, with 10 of 22 players from our Junior Program. Here are the teams we sent!

ATTC 1 - Division 10

Sathish, Yashwanth 1737

Ramachandran, Sahaj 1524

Polisetty, Aaryan 1500

ATTC 2 - Division 13

Ganji, Mohit 1093

Murali, Disha 1082

Subbaiah, Lekha 1047

ATTC 3 - Division 10

Song, Kai 1885

Qiu, Yi 1611

Tang, Yihang 1608

Wong, Weihsuan 1366

Ding, Lillian 1233

ATTC TIGERS - Division 8

Patel, Swar 1907

Chirayath, Aditya 1762

Joy, Neave 1752

Austin Real Estate Advisors - Division 5

Mueller, Rick 1951

Abraham, Lee 1866

Yin, Rath 1784

Meow Long - Division 8

Omen, Tommy 1816

Woon, Danny 1672

Chen, Justin 1654

Instant Ramen - Division 12

Lu, Yan 1808 TX

Lu, Olivia 1673

Qiu, Shandra 1590

Kannan, Sarika 1523

Pong Donkeys - Division 2

Dinh, Khoi 2392

Dinh, Khai 2356

Tran, Tuan-anh 2296

Ryberg, Cole 2227

NA Teams has an interesting format, instead of singles play in a round robin or rated event structure, teams of 3 individuals play best out of 9 matches. Teams are given a rating based on the combined ratings of their top 3 players. On preliminary day, this team rating is used to assign the team their initial division where they will play teams above and below their division to determine which division they will play on Saturday. If a team wins all their preliminary matches, the they move up two divisions, if they lose all their matches they move down two divisions, etc. As the division number gets higher so does the playing level, so it's in the team's best interest to preform well on prelim day so that they can enter a competitive division on Saturday.

On Saturday teams within each division are separated into two sub groups where they play a round robin. Top two teams from each group cross-over on Sunday to determine the top 4 finishers. Play usually starts at 9am and sometimes ends at 1AM the following morning - especially when ties (matches between teams) goes the full 9 match distance.

At the end of the tournament and two and a half days of play, indiviudals can expect to have 25-30+ matches under their belt!!! NA Teams provides some of the most compeitive table tennis in North America. Players and styles from all over the world come to compete and provide great match experieince. The team format is also quite unique. Club mates now have a tournament format where coaching and camradiere become important factors for individual performance.

Team Achievements

DIVISION 12 CHAMPION - Instant Ramen - Shandra Qiu

HUGE CONGRATULATIONS to Shandra Qiu!!! She went 22 wins - 5 loses to lead INSTANT RAMEN to WIN the Division 12 finals. Shandra trains very hard and is a member of the ATTC Junior Program. Her family, Coach Shahin and Clayton, and Shandra have put in a lot of work and dedication to get this title. Congratulations again to Shandra and her team!

DIVISION 2 TOP 4 - Pong Donkeys - Tuan Tran

Also make sure to give CONGRATS to Tuan Tran, his team made it to the cross-overs in Division 2, where he and his team finished 4th. Very difficult to do with such a high playing level. This is the 2nd consecutive year in a row Tuan's team has placed in Division 2 at DC Teams - quite the accomplishment!

Individual Achievements

More progress by our juniors!!! But this time more growth coming from our kids in the 1000-1500 range. Mohit takes the rating's haul for this tournament with 212 points gained. Mohit had big upsets against 6 players that were rated higher than him, with 5 of those matching being a 3-1 or 3-0 win. Very strong perfromance Mohit!

Sahaj also had a breakout tournament with 9 upsets against strong opponents. 7 of those matches were won 3-0 or 3-1 against players 100+ points higher. Sahaj is a lefty with a great backhand and misdirects alot of opponents with creative forehand shots. Good job Sahaj!!!

Lekha had 3 - huge upsets all against players 200 points higher. She helped her team defeat the team ranked 1-higher and both teams ranked lower on Prelim day to help move them up one division. Tough to do and tough to execute. Great job fighting and playing hard!!!

You may know Aaryan for his passion filled CHO-LEHs!!! Or for his strong two-wing attacking style. I was not at Teams, but I'm absolutly sure that he brought both to go on a 132 point gain. Aaryan had 3 great upsets against opponents that were 200+ higher. He defeated 1674 (174 points higher) quickly with a 3-0 win; a 1612 in a close 5-setter with an 11-9 win in the 5th; and a huge win against a 1771 (+271 points) after being down 0-2, and losing 1-11 in the 2nd, he came back and won the next 3 sets 11-9, 11-9, 11-7. In the face of what looked like certain defeat, he dug in and fought. Excellent playing!!!

As you read earlier, Shandra lead her team to win Division 12 in a very commanding position. She was able to play her strong two-wing counter attacking style with a 22-5 record - that's 81% win streak. After the carnage was done, Shandra walked away with some hardware for her team's 1st place win and 98 points to boot. Great way to celebrate Thanksgiving!!!

Our top 4 adult gainers are Danny, Rath, Rick and Tommy with a compained 371 points. Danny takes the cake for most points gained at 116 points, Rath beat several 1900s and 2000s to jump up 100 points, and Rick rejoins the 2K club with his experience and tactics. While Tommy was carrying his team with his steady chopping, everyone on Meow Long - Tommy, Danny and Justin managed to bring in a good haul of points.

Now to our top gainers! The list below contains the following information: Name - Club Affiliation - New rating (point gain) Highest Rating (HR)

  1. Mohit Ganji -- ATTC Junior -- 1305(+212) HR

  2. Sahaj Ramachandran -- ATTC Junior -- 1734(+210) HR

  3. Lekha Subbaiah -- ATTC Junior -- 1197(+150) HR

  4. Aaryan Polisetty -- ATTC Junior -- 1632(+132) HR

  5. Danny Woon -- ATTC Adult -- 1788(+116) HR

  6. Rath Yin -- ATTC Adult -- 1884(+100) HR

  7. Shandra Qiu -- ATTC Junior -- 1688(+98) HR

  8. Rick Mueller -- ATTC Adult -- 2029(+78)

  9. Tommy Omen -- ATTC Adult -- 1893(+77) HR

  10. Kai Song -- ATTC Adult -- 1938(+53) HR

  11. Aditya Chirayath -- ATTC Junior -- 1810(+48) HR

  12. Disha Murali -- ATTC Junior -- 1122(+40) HR

  13. Justin Chen -- ATTC Adult -- 1690(+36)

  14. Lee Abraham -- ATTC Adult -- 1883(+17) HR

If you see these folks around the club give them a congrats and ask them how the tournament was. For those that haven't been to DC Teams - try to go at least once! Not only is the competition good, but the club comraderie is strong with many memorable stories of incredible playing and goofy mishaps. Well worth the trip.


This is my last newsletter for a while, but it has been a pleasure writing about how well everyone has done in the past year and a half. It is also great to seeing how folks put a lot of time into table tennis - which I gather is at least one of the important things in their lifes - and do well at tournaments, or just have fun, get in some exercise, or have a laugh when there's a good point.

2 комментария

Ken Jones
Ken Jones
11 дек. 2023 г.

Thanks Jeff for the insightful, professional, and detailed accounts of our members progress at tournaments. I love how the youth program is steadily progressing and getting national attention.


11 дек. 2023 г.

great work Jeff as always. You are the most organized person I have ever encountered over many years. Congrats to the kids and Grandpa Tuan

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