By: Jeff Nguyen
Photo Credit: JP
TTPlanet Match Highlights: Kewei vs Deng
Find tournament results HERE
Find tournament ratings HERE
Austin Table Tennis hosted a 3-Star Open, consisting of 6 singles and 2 double events tournament last weekend on Saturday, March 18. Many thanks to Tuan, Hazel, Ken, Cynthia, Zhen, Conrado, Rath for volunteering their time to run this event. We had 104 players participate with nearly 400 matches. That's a lot of table tennis!
At a glance:
Austin area clubs stepped onto the podium 11 of 30 available positions. With more out of town folks coming, this tournament was definitely more competitive.
769 points were gained by folks on our "Top Gainer" list, with 8 of the 14 being juniors
12 of the 14 folks on the "Top Gainer" list made their highest rating
Of the 8 juniors that made the top gainers list, all of them hit their highest rating!
I want to focus on the juniors a little more for this report because they have made impressive progress at this tournament. They have been working very hard with their parents, Coach Shahin and his staff to get to where they are now. The club is invested in their progress as we support their training, encourage them to play more tournaments and encourage them to participate in intra-club events where they're able to learn from our older, more experienced and decorated players.
One unique aspect of the Austin Table Tennis Junior program is that each generation - or age group of players - helps support, coach, and train each other. This system allows them to learn how to teach each other, how to think for themselves, and how think in different perspectives as they learn from each other. It takes time for this system to mature and we're seeing the fruits of labor bud now. This allows for everyone in the Junior Program to rise together. Using the juniors that made the "Top Gainers" list as an example, the following Juniors have gained on average 317 year-to-date.
Junior Improvement YEAR TO DATE
Rating Gain Year to Date
2nd - Shahin Akhlaghpasand
3rd - Rath Yin
2nd - Mike Kenny
3rd - Swar Patel (Junior)
2nd Aditya Chirayath (Junior)
3rd/4th - Ryan Choi (Junior)
3rd/4th - Teddy Bricker
3rd/4th - Richard Nguyen
2nd - Masoud Mojtahed/Neave Joy
3rd/4th - Sarthak Gupta/Sambit Kanjilal
3rd/4th - Sunil Idnani/Niranjan Sivaraman
TOP GAINERS LIST
Eleven of the top fourteen rating gains for this tournament were personal bests! Our top five gainers pulled off some major upsets that helped propel them forward.
Andre (1187) - 258 point upset against 1445
Aditya (1601) - 206 point upset against 1807
Ananya (1605) - 77 point upset against 1682
Swar (1780) - 123 point upset against 1903
Sikander (1494) - 187 point upset against 1681
Pretty huge upsets! Andre, our top gainer, was able to out serve his opponents, and consistently place the ball back on the table to great effect. Many of our juniors are now gaining a better understanding of the game and are learning how to use their skills to construct a point, and move the odds in their favor. Great progress by everyone.
Congrats to these folks for a great tournament. Make sure to give them a high five next time you see them! The list contains the following information: Name - Club Affiliation - New rating (point gain) Highest Rating (HR)
Andre Beskrowni -- ATTC Adult -- 1299(+112) HR
Aditya Chirayath -- ATTC Junior -- 1705(+104) HR
Ananya Singaraju -- ATTC Junior -- 1686(+81) HR
Swar Patel -- ATTC Junior -- 1850(+74) HR
Sikander Aggarwal -- ATTC Adult -- 1545(+51) HR
Mohit Ganji -- ATTC Junior -- 938(+50) HR
Annayya Manjunath Savadatti -- ATTC Adult -- 1613(+45)
Ryan Choi -- ATTC Junior -- 1649(+44) HR
Stephen Tao -- ATTC Junior -- 1705(+41) HR
Rayan Dange -- ATTC Junior -- 1067(+39) HR
Morris Lo -- ATTC Junior -- 908(+38) HR
Pavlo Savchenko -- ATTC Adult -- 1356(+36)
Olaf Westheider -- Pong Club ATX Adult -- 1120(+28) HR
Richard Nguyen -- ATTC Adult -- 1378(+26)
For this report's advice, especially for our juniors and perhaps for some of the adults that are trying to get better as well. This advice may be familiar to some, maybe not to others:
#### Get comfortable with being uncomfortable ####
If you're trying to improve this is something you'll need to get used to. This means putting extra focus in the drills you're not so good at. Or playing opponents that you don't like because their spin is weird. Or going to more tournaments when you don't feel ready. Or taking that bit of advice from a person you don't completely agree with...
Ultimately in your path to improving, if there is something you don't prefer, don't like, makes you uncomfortable, or even scared of - if you don't face it and address it -- You will be stuck. And sometimes getting stuck is worse than the fear of the thing you don't want to face.
The thing about learning and improving is that you're not the master, you're not the best, and you'll probably not be very good at the new thing you're trying to learn.
That's OK - it's because you're doing something that's unfamiliar. But that doesn't mean it will be that way forever! What's important is that you try and persevere with what you set out to do.
With all this trying, persistence, and hard work talk - I will say - sitting on the couch eating potato chips and watching TV isn't completely a bad thing either! It's good to have some balance and have time to yourself to relax and be a blob. That bit was more for the adults than the juniors. And maybe carrot sticks instead of chips, better for the cholesterol. Just do it sparingly - especially the kiddos - so don't be using the line above as an excuse to your parents!!!
Be brave and don't be scared! You have your friends to support you and pick you up as you make your way down the winding path of progress! Keep pushing forward!!!