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Dan
05-21-2011, 01:07 PM
Ok guys,

William Henzell will be answering questions in this thread. Any questions you would like to ask William leave it in the comments below :)

On board to the TableTennisDaily forum is William Henzell who is a right-handed Australian Table Tennis player. He was born in Adelaide and moved to Sweden at the age of 14. His highest international ranking was 108 in 2010. He has represented Australia many times, including securing Australia's first Commonwealth Games table tennis singles medal with a silver medal at the 2006 Commonwealth Games. He was inducted into the Australia Table Tennis Hall of Fame at the age of 26, 20 years younger than any other of the inductees.

http://corporate.olympics.com.au/images/dmImage/StandardImage/William_Henzell_460x300.jpg
Image thanks to Ezra Shaw/Getty Image

William is very knowledgeable and will give you a good incentive to table tennis. For more on William Henzell visit: TTedge (http://www.ttedge.com/)


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lYNUVLB4Ygg

TTOski
05-21-2011, 01:34 PM
I wonder what made you so much better than any other Aussie? Was there always someone better player to play with?

YosuaYosan
05-21-2011, 02:49 PM
Dear William, what is your opinion about Chinese dominance over table tennis ?
Thx in advance :D

dici
05-21-2011, 05:29 PM
I would like to know that what is your thought on the coaches in different countries, if you have any experience from the training by different coach. Especially after how the article report about how those Chinese player being train. It would be more interesting for me if you would like to talk about how the coach would train the kids from the very beginning level.

ttEDGE - William
05-21-2011, 07:35 PM
@ TTOski - I moved overseas at 14, spending the next 10 years in Sweden and 2 years after that in Germany. If you keep working away at your game, with the right coaching, training and matches, then you will improve.

@YosuaYosan - many different reason for this. Partly a numbers game: if you have thousands and thousands of players working their hardest every day to become the best player possible then you can't really fail. They train incredibly hard from a very young age - you'd struggle to find too many European parents who would be willing to ship their children off to become full-time TT players before the age of 10! They are also technically sound.

@dici - difficult question as each coach has their own way of teaching and handling the players. I've got a couple of articles coming up on my blog on the website about my experiences of working with my different coaches.

7th Sense
05-21-2011, 08:24 PM
What is your training schedule like? What do you think of the use of a returnboard?

Your 'backhand topspin against block' vid really helped me improved my bh. Thank you! :D

ttEDGE - William
05-21-2011, 08:50 PM
Hi 7th. I just got back after a few weeks in Europe and I'm trying to keep my training up to a reasonable level in Australia. I'm doing around 5 sessions per week most of time at the moment. I'll be heading back to Europe to train at the Werner Schlager Academy later this year which I'm really looking forward to - it's a brilliant set-up and the week I spent there significantly helped my game.

I'm not 100% sure what a returnboard is. Would you mind elaborating?

Thanks and that's good to hear! We're happy with how the coaching videos are looking and have tried to be as detailed as possible. There are 27 videos currently up at www.ttEDGE.com and more are going on each week. The most exciting videos we are creating at the moment are match analysis vids of some of the top players in the World. We should be releasing one of these (Timo Boll vs Ma Lin) on our youtube channel (www.youtube.com/tabletennisedge) soon.

Spitfire
05-21-2011, 09:19 PM
Hi William :)

What is your take on the below,



The AGM also approved a trial of a new method of play, it’s very simple, whoever loses the previous point gets to serve next, the intent of this trial is to see if it reduces the domination of the service and its follow up as the this method of play would ensure that a game was always won against the opponents serve.

What do you think about this ?

ttEDGE - William
05-21-2011, 09:32 PM
Not a fan. I believe part of the intent of this trial is to stop players winning sets with dubious serves (as many of the top players are serving completely against the current rule). This won't solve the problem whatsoever.

Anders
05-21-2011, 09:33 PM
William: What do you think about all the changes to our sport? The speed glue ban, no hidden serves etc... Also I wonder how often you change rubbers, and how important your equipment is for your game.

Thank you for answering :-)

ttEDGE - William
05-21-2011, 09:46 PM
I been critical to many of the changes that were brought in without being properly thought through. Banning speed glue was good - that stuff was nasty and dangerous for the players.\

The booster witch-hunt that has taken over is a joke. You should see the amount of people sitting in the racket control room at every tournament testing to see if there a 3.00000 or 3.000001 parts per million (ppm) of VOC (volatile organic compounds) or if the rubber is 3.99mm or 4.00mm. It's the same stuff that mothers put on their babies' bottoms for goodness sake!

The service rule is very poor. There are a large number of top players who are deliberately hiding their serves behind their heads and shoulders on every serve. The players who are serving according to the rule are facing a massive disadvantage.

Equipment is of course very important. I change my rubbers every couple of weeks.

7th Sense
05-21-2011, 10:38 PM
Hi 7th. I just got back after a few weeks in Europe and I'm trying to keep my training up to a reasonable level in Australia. I'm doing around 5 sessions per week most of time at the moment. I'll be heading back to Europe to train at the Werner Schlager Academy later this year which I'm really looking forward to - it's a brilliant set-up and the week I spent there significantly helped my game.

I'm not 100% sure what a returnboard is. Would you mind elaborating?

Thanks and that's good to hear! We're happy with how the coaching videos are looking and have tried to be as detailed as possible. There are 27 videos currently up at www.ttEDGE.com and more are going on each week. The most exciting videos we are creating at the moment are match analysis vids of some of the top players in the World. We should be releasing one of these (Timo Boll vs Ma Lin) on our youtube channel (www.youtube.com/tabletennisedge) soon.

I saw this returnboard on Youtube lately, and I thought it looks kind of fun if there's no one else around to hit with:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dza4gUz3aeE&feature=relmfu

Awesome site and Youtube channel! I look forward to watching future match analysis videos. I think that at the point where pros have achieve the highest shot consistency, one has to plan the moves out to keep the opposing side off-balance, like a chess game.
Have you ever thought about teaming up with Pingskills? They also post table tennis tutorials like you guys do.

ttEDGE - William
05-21-2011, 10:44 PM
That looks pretty cool :) If you don't have a practice partner for the day then why not?! My concern is that it would train you to hit medium length topspins down the middle of the table but if your still learning the basics then it wouldn't be much of an issue.

I've known the Pingskills guys for a long time and they have done some great work for table tennis over the past few years. I've got many of my own ideas and approaches that I'd like to try out. Glad to hear you like the site!

poltery
05-22-2011, 01:02 AM
dear sir William,
Do you find chinese rubbers hard to deal with. BTW is an off+ blade with a h3 neo super fast?

ttEDGE - William
06-01-2011, 10:55 PM
Chinese rubbers shouldn't be harder to deal with than any other rubbers IMO. An OFF+ blade with just about any rubbers is going to be super fast. I haven't used h3 neo so I can't comment specifically on that. But I've seen so many players who are tricked into buying the most the fastest (and most expensive) blades on the market in the hope that the more they spend, the better they'll become.

ttmonster
06-02-2011, 01:06 AM
Hi William ,

Thanks a lot to taking time out to answering our questions ! I was curious as to how to plan our practice schedule around tournaments ? For example , do you taper out the number of hours , concentrate on your service and return games etc. It would be great if you can enlighten us on the mental preparation part also before a tournament .

Bollforte94
06-02-2011, 10:48 PM
Hey William
What do you think if you see this

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e80s3WR8dj4

Just kidding, lucky Wang
Now my real question:
Do you regret to become a top player ? I know it is amazing to make his hobby to his job but with another job you would earn much more money except you play for China :D

YosuaYosan
06-02-2011, 10:58 PM
Wow, I shouldve dropped the ball instead, but seeing from the event and condition, only instinctual action could be taken :D

scylla24
06-03-2011, 12:49 AM
Hey William,

I was wondering how many Chinese players have you played, and out of those who did you think was the hardest to beat and why? Or just who in general Chinese or non-Chinese did you think was the hardest to beat. I don't know if it was just a good style of play match for you or something, but you seemed to do very well against WLQ in the video, despite the fact that in that video he was still probably at or close to the top of his game.

ttEDGE - William
06-03-2011, 05:13 AM
Hi ttmonster. I normally cover this sort of thing in my blog on ttEDGE.com. But I'll do a blog post on this topic soon and post on here when finished.

@bolforte - no I don't regret it. I've been working in Australia for the past 3 years after moving home after 12 years in Europe. I recently quit my job to set up ttEDGE.com and to work more on my table tennis again. Turning up to the same place all day long every day (while dreaming about my 4 weeks of holidays for the year) did not suit me and I'm happy to be more involved in table tennis again.

@scylla - Of the top players, I've played Wang Liqin 3 times, Wang Hao once, Ma Lin in doubles and Ma Long in doubles. Yeh, I had really good chances to get close to beating WLQ in Beijing. He struggled against my tomahawk serve all through the match and I was able to dominate his backhand continually. I did also play him at the 2006 World Cup and got mashed - that match was not fun and I felt pretty powerless at times. I didn't have my tomahawk back then and he didn't have any problems with my pendulum serve.

I would say that Ma Lin would be a nightmare to play if he's playing well. Such a good short push and then follows it up with forehand topspins over the table. I'm half way through doing some match analysis videos of his match against Timo Boll at the German Open this year (which involves watching each point about 15 times!) so I'm getting to know his tricks well. I didn't mind playing Wang Hao and we had a whole heap of backhand - backhand rallies. I lost 4-1 but didn't have any real chances to get on top at any stage.

My best win (albeit in doubles) was against Ma Long at the 2007 French Open. Adam Robertson and I beat Ma Long and Qiu Yike which was a pretty surreal experience.

There haven't been too many matches against the top players where I've been completely killed, really only that one against WLQ. But beating them is a completely different story and you'll need to be able to beat them in so many different areas of the game. They don't go down without a fight and can vary their play enormously when needed.

TTLarry
06-03-2011, 06:22 AM
Good afternoon Sir,

I would like to ask if your training schedule involves hitting the gym for how many hours? How do you prepare for a match during the day before and that day? What is the diet for a proffesional table tennis player? How do you overcome nerves during the match? Thank you.:)

rahul
06-03-2011, 08:43 AM
Hi william,
Im using medium pimples in my bh... are there any changes in my bh strokes? Like topspin and counter hits?
/

scylla24
06-03-2011, 08:52 PM
Hey William,

Thank you for your response. I definitely find it interesting how just like you, Schlager, in his interview that is posted on youtube, also said that despite Wang Hao being having good skill, and the advantage of the rpb, Schlager still felt that in terms of technical skills Ma Lin had the best of any player he has ever met, or at least among the Chinese players. Perhaps a lot of non-Chinese players feel this way about Ma Lin because his more traditional penhold style is just so foreign to them. Have you ever played Ryu Sueng Minh by any chance? If so, was there a big difference between him and Ma Lin?

I hope this isn't too much of a burden on your time, but I also had a follow up question after you responded. Being only a beginner/intermediate player, I never quite had a thorough understanding of how one, as you described it, varies their play enormously. I hear the Chinese announcers always saying that players like Ma Lin have a lot of "bian hua" which is variation in their game. Could you have a general overview of what type of variations they/you are talking about and how to make such variations and how to become better are making those variations. Is it mostly just where you aim your hit to land? It seems to me, and I am probably wrong since I don't have the necessary skills, that due to the incredible amount of spin and speed of professional play, you only have a very small margin of error in which you can hit the ball along its arc to return the ball correctly. Therefore it would seem to be hard to really vary the spin all that much.

lgreggs
06-04-2011, 12:58 PM
Hey William, fancy a knock?

ttEDGE - William
06-07-2011, 10:42 PM
@scylla24 - I'm pleased you asked this! I just finished making this video of a match between Timo Boll and Ma Lin and uploaded to youtube:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G1oP0nKi6ms

I'm commentating, replaying key sequences and explaining some of the tactics, technique and variations that are being used. I've got 6 of these vids on ttEDGE.com and am working on more. Have a look and feel free to ask questions about the play.

I played Ryu in 2007 at the World Cup. I didn't play so well that match, and despite there being some 11-9s, lost the match 4-0. I didn't think he played so well that match either to be honest but just did what he needed to take a comfortable 4-0 win. For a start Ryu serves more sidespin variations in his serve whereas Ma Lin uses mainly backspin / nospin variations. Ryu does not have much of a backhand whereas Ma has a decent one (nothing like Wang Hao though who has a brilliant backhand).

@ttlarry - mostly 3 areas. Strength and balanced for my legs. Strength / injury prevention for my shoulder (mainly rotator cuff exercises) and balance / injury prevention for my lower back, trunk and abs. I don't get to the gym as often as I'd like but I try at least once per week.

@lgreggs - sure, might be a bit of a drive for you...

@rahul - Your shots wil need to be completely different yes. A player I know who uses medium pips well on her backhad is Miao Miao.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J763LdQZ_nU

Dan
08-05-2011, 01:25 PM
William's latest video! It's brilliant!


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pgbjjMX6FmU&feature=feedu

Dan
08-12-2011, 08:44 PM
William took Adrian Mattenet so close! 11-9 in the seventh set


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xGZ5rnsGowg&feature=feedu

DKPOWA
08-12-2011, 09:30 PM
William, you should be an ITTF commentator :D

Dan
08-15-2011, 12:25 PM
Williams latest match anaylsis against Adrian Mattenet


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8hCN2n-mBPg&feature=feedu

JustAlt
08-15-2011, 05:33 PM
Great matches and analyzes, thanks a lot.