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MONBULK TABLE TENNIS
Table tennis is a dynamic, exciting sport that is played socially every Friday night in Monbulk.
It is thought that upper-class Victorians in England invented table tennis in the 1880s as a genteel, after-dinner alternative to lawn tennis, using whatever they could find as equipment. A line of books would often be the net, the rounded top of a champagne cork would be the ball and occasionally a cigar box lid would be a racket.
In 1926, meetings were held in Berlin and London that led to the formation of the International Table Tennis Federation. The first World Championships were held in London in 1926, but the sport had to wait a long time before it was given its Olympic debut at the 1988 Seoul Games.
The sport has progressed enormously since it was first invented. Nowadays, players use specially developed rubber-coated wooden and carbon-fibre rackets and a lightweight, hollow celluloid ball. Thanks to their high-tech rackets, they can now smash the ball at over 150 kilometres per hour.
It is estimated there are 40 million competitive table tennis players and countless millions playing recreationally, making it the sport with the most participants worldwide. This is largely owing to its enormous popularity in China.
Monbulk Table Tennis Association is soon to celebrate its third birthday.
Founder Jenie Stroh said the club had 25 members ranging in age from 12 to 72.
“We play recreationally with room for spontaneous games on the night at Monbulk Living and Learning Centre, a clean spacious well-lit space on the lower level with quality equipment,” Jenie said.
She said participants had commented to her that they found table tennis a good way to get moving and they found it a great family activity that was not expensive.
Jenie encouraged people to go along and try their hand at table tennis. Cost is only $5 per session, 7.30pm – 9pm Friday nights.
There will be no meeting on 19 May, instead the club will meet on Thursday 18 May.
Monbulk Table Tennis Association has secured funding through VicGov and Table Tennis Victoria via an initiative to increase female participation in sport.
The association is offering women six free, one house sessions on Wednesdays 11.30am – 12.30pm starting 17 May (except 24 May).
Call Jenie with inquiries on 9752 1213 or go to https://sites.google.com/site/monbulktabletennis/ or email monbulktt@gmail.com.

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