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    #21
    I am really tired of the injury stories of Zhang Jike. All pro players have injuries and/or diseases to fight against, and a lot of them choose not to talk much about them, especially in public. In 2005, Wang Nan was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. It was not reported by any journalists until she got the silver medal in 2008 Beijing Olympic Games women's singles event (Zhang Yining gold). In an interview in 2014, Wang Nan told a story of Zhang Yining: in 2002 Qatar Open, after Zhang Yining lost to Wang Nan in the final, Wang Nan found her got 11 shots on her ribs and Zhang Yining did not say a word about it before the match. Ironically, before Rio 2016, Ma Long got a shot for his wrist injury and Xu Xin got shots for his shoulder injury; and when everyone saw Zhang Jike with such a "severe" waist injury, Liu Guoliang said it was under control.
    Currently, Liu Guoliang and CNT are blamed because Zhang Jike's ankle injury has not been taken "good care" of for 5 months. It is viral on social media in China. Zhang Jike was not able to move due to the ankle injury in Marvellous 12 Trials last week but Zhang Jike was able to run and play basketball and soccer in a variety show a few days ago. Table tennis is more intense than basketball and soccer, I guess.

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    Last edited by rainneverever; 03-19-2017 at 02:52 AM.

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    #22
    Zhang Jike's millions of fangirls regard him as a hero fighting for his nation and believe that he is the person who makes people watch table tennis.

    Quote Originally Posted by UpSideDownCarl
    I think ZJK is a self absorbed egotistical guy who doesn't care about the team events and played badly because he didn't care. There are many matches ZJK lost where it looks like he just didn't have his head or his heart in the match.

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    Last edited by rainneverever; 03-19-2017 at 02:13 AM.

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    #23
    I really like the analyses of rainneverever, and all conclusions were made based on the statistic data. Very scientific and logical! However, it may go against a bunch of theories about Jedi mind, sleeping play, super short game, etc. that have been widely spread for a long long time on TTD about table tennis LORD - ZJK. There are some points that are FIXED on TTD: ZJK wins because he inhibits his opponent from playing their game/techniques/tactics; ZJK loses because he sleeps/he is unmotivated/he trolls/he plays Jedi mind/tourney isn't big enough (which is interesting that apart from OG, WTTC, and WC, Quatar and Kuwait Open become "big" because of ZJK's win) or because of his well-known long-lasting injury.

    For the LORD, nobody cares about the facts from statistic data because his fans work really hard to complete the theories that they create, and every time refer back to it as a "well-accepted truth".
    On the way to being aware of IMPACT playing

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    #24
    Quote Originally Posted by rainneverever
    Zhang Jike was not able to move due to the ankle injury in Marvellous 12 Trials last week but Zhang Jike was able to run and play basketball and soccer in a variety show a few days ago. Table tennis is more intense than basketball and soccer, I guess.
    I agree. There has been more nonsense. There has been more drama about injuries. I have never seen another TT player drop out in the middle of a match with injuries as much as Zhang Jike. He has a pretty lame attitude.

    Now we are on the same page. His fan girls might think things that are silly. He is a player with a bad attitude who got kicked off the CNT for it and got back onto the team after. He has never been overwhelmingly dominant. But he won the big matches when they counted.

    I don't think his technique or playing ability is the problem with his performance against weaker opponents. I think his attitude is. Many of his injuries are real. But I have see. Him leave in the middle of matches where most other players would have continued.

    I am comfortable saying he is lame. But not because his technique is bad. It's because the guy is messed up in the head.


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    #25
    Have I ever said Zhang Jike's techniques are bad? "My explanation of Zhang Jike's unstable performance is that his techniques/tactics are not good enough to secure an easy win. " This is what I said.

    As a Chinese, I do not doubt about Zhang Jike's patriotism when he played for the nation. He had strong mind (stronger than Ma Long and Xu Xin, right?), good coach (Liu Guoliang was always there in the team events), and was not always "badly" injured especially in team events in 2012 Olympic Games and 2013 Word Cup. That is why I reach my conclusion above.
    Last edited by rainneverever; 03-19-2017 at 03:22 AM.

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    #26
    There are similar theories in Chinese forums and social networks, some of which are even funnier.

    For example, here are popular explanations for Zhang Jike's loss to Timo Boll in 2012 London: (1) Ma Long "refused" to play doubles, so playing both singles and doubles in the team events made Zhang Jike so tired when he met Timo Boll; (2) Timo Boll "doped" in 2012.

    Simple rule: it is always others' fault (most likely Ma Long and Liu Guoliang) when Zhang Jike did not perform well.

    Quote Originally Posted by bricephan
    I really like the analyses of rainneverever, and all conclusions were made based on the statistic data. Very scientific and logical! However, it may go against a bunch of theories about Jedi mind, sleeping play, super short game, etc. that have been widely spread for a long long time on TTD about table tennis LORD - ZJK. There are some points that are FIXED on TTD: ZJK wins because he inhibits his opponent from playing their game/techniques/tactics; ZJK loses because he sleeps/he is unmotivated/he trolls/he plays Jedi mind/tourney isn't big enough (which is interesting that apart from OG, WTTC, and WC, Quatar and Kuwait Open become "big" because of ZJK's win) or because of his well-known long-lasting injury.

    For the LORD, nobody cares about the facts from statistic data because his fans work really hard to complete the theories that they create, and every time refer back to it as a "well-accepted truth".

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    Last edited by rainneverever; 03-19-2017 at 03:43 AM.

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    #27
    Hey, I am not making excuses for ZJK. I am just saying that when he was on, he was pretty darn good. When he is not, he underperforms and does not look like he is even trying.

    I personally think the guy is a head case. I can't think of a TT player I dislike more because of what a bad attitude he has.

    But when he was on, he was pretty impressive. His time is done. I personally think he should retire before he embarrasses himself. Because, to me, he looks like he is done.


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    #28
    Quote Originally Posted by UpSideDownCarl
    Hey, I am not making excuses for ZJK. I am just saying that when he was on, he was pretty darn good. When he is not, he underperforms and does not look like he is even trying.

    I personally think the guy is a head case. I can't think of a TT player I dislike more because of what a bad attitude he has.

    But when he was on, he was pretty impressive. His time is done. I personally think he should retire before he embarrasses himself. Because, to me, he looks like he is done.


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    Absolutely agree. ZJK should retire gracefully (due to injury or whatever) or else perform and prove just like everyone else. You were a grand slam winner but not anymore. Look at Ma Long who goes about his business with minimum fuss. Let your TT do your talking or hang up your boots.

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    #29
    Quote Originally Posted by UpSideDownCarl
    Hey, I am not making excuses for ZJK. I am just saying that when he was on, he was pretty darn good. When he is not, he underperforms and does not look like he is even trying.

    I personally think the guy is a head case. I can't think of a TT player I dislike more because of what a bad attitude he has.

    But when he was on, he was pretty impressive. His time is done. I personally think he should retire before he embarrasses himself. Because, to me, he looks like he is done.


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    Totally agree. But here's something to think about, if ZJK really is that unprofessional why haven't LGL and co. do anything about it? They could be sending players like Liang Jikun and Wang Chuqin instead of him to the world tour events.

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    #30
    I read every post here & what i saw was bringing zjk down to a very low level which is not interesting. Malong & zjk are two active grandslam which can make todays tt more interesting , so if u guys doesnt like him or hate him , hate him but pls dont ruin his picture in this forum . I cant remeber a CNT male player that had more serious injury than zjk . if there were any , for sure china's media would have shared that cause they reflect every single news .Well it's true that zjk is doing good but it has a reason . he hasnt played for about 6 months due to injury and it's not an excuse . even with this little time of playing zjk did well in first 4 game in qualification . But in the end every one has their own opinion . what i want is to see zjk play more and more ......

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    #31
    Quote Originally Posted by DoctorPaco
    Totally agree. But here's something to think about, if ZJK really is that unprofessional why haven't LGL and co. do anything about it? They could be sending players like Liang Jikun and Wang Chuqin instead of him to the world tour events.

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    But he does send other players, LJK played already 2 Times world tour just this year and Wang Chuqin once as I remember. I do not like ZJK attitude but he is really talented player, why:
    1. He plays close to the table then most of chinese
    2. BH banana flip is really exceptional
    3. Great serve receive
    4. Great BH topspin
    5. He use his head during game a lot - not just power.

    Of course he has some weaknesses like every player, but in fact besides ML and FZD they do not have 100% sure players against foreigners, maybe XX but lately he started loosing. So ZJK in form and healthy is definitely top 4 player. If LGL has other top 4 players he will definitely make ZJK retired.

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    #32
    Quote Originally Posted by Sali
    But he does send other players, LJK played already 2 Times world tour just this year and Wang Chuqin once as I remember. I do not like ZJK attitude but he is really talented player, why:
    1. He plays close to the table then most of chinese
    2. BH banana flip is really exceptional
    3. Great serve receive
    4. Great BH topspin
    5. He use his head during game a lot - not just power.

    Of course he has some weaknesses like every player, but in fact besides ML and FZD they do not have 100% sure players against foreigners, maybe XX but lately he started loosing. So ZJK in form and healthy is definitely top 4 player. If LGL has other top 4 players he will definitely make ZJK retired.
    Valid points, but I think you're missing the point of the discussion

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    #33
    Zjks time has passed. I'm kinda shocked he hasn't retired to coaching. He'd still be a celebrity. But he's not got the fighting spirit necessary for CNT. Very happy about LGY

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    #34
    Quote Originally Posted by rainneverever
    I totally agree that Zhang Jike is a character and he had his time back then. But don't be fooled. He did not win some of the matches not because he did not care; simply because he was not that dominant, technically and mentally. What excuse can you find for his loss to Timo Boll in SF of team events in London 2012, only a few days after he became the Grand Slam? For CNT players and coaches, team events are way more important than singles; they don't afford to lose.

    Zhang Jike was the training partner of Wang Hao and he won 4 big tournaments titles beating Wang Hao. He won only 1 champion in the whole year of 2014 (World Cup over Ma Long by a some margin and the famous banner story). He won 1 more champion, nationally and internationally, ever since Wang Hao retired in Dec 2014. The fact speaks.

    If CNT players were kicked off to their province team, they could be back to CNT if they made to the QF of Chinese National Games(every 4 year) or National TT Championships (every year excluding the year of National Games) . For example, Li Ping, who currently represents Qatar, was kicked out of CNT in 2004. 8 months after, he got the 3rd place in National TTC and returned to CNT. In the case of Zhang Jike, he was kicked off in 2004. He did not made to QF in 2005 National Games (Gold: Wang Liqin, Silver: Wang Hao, Bronze: Ma Long) and he made to QF in 2006 National TTC (not made to SF) and went back to CNT. FYI, National Games are taken seriously by the athletes because they represent their provinces. In 2009 National Games, Gold went to Wang Hao, Silver to Ma Long and Bronze to Wang Liqin. In 2013 National Games, Gold went to Ma Long, Silver to Fan Zhendong, Bronze to Xu Xin. Zhang Jike did not make to SF in 2009 and 2013 National Games, representing his province Shandong.


    Show me those matches and please tell me where why and how ZJK is not technically a sound player losing matches that he actually cared about . Have you ever observed his body language in pro tours? Nowadays even ma long is getting bored

    You people confuse flashy forehands with effective technique.

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    #35
    Also, when talking about technique you cant speak at such a generic level because you are actually talking crap. You must specify, which part of his technique and why is inferior thatn let's say Xu xiN or FZD or ma long or anyone.

    Its a fact that ML does not have a good BH close to the table compared to ZJK or FZD or LJK. This is a fact. Its a fact that close to table playy ZJK and FZD are the best especially in countertoppspin rallies. Its a fact tha ML is the best in FH FH rallies mid distance

    Just talking about "inferior" technique makes you look unreliable. Its ok not to like ZJK or to like ZJK for whatever reason, but please, dont bring in the pro tours titles into play to make conclusions about technique and mentality. It is a joke

    Im down with carl on this, especially in 2013 2014 everybody was talking crap about ZJK but he proved he is the best convincingly. I myself was a diehard ML fan the first time I saw ZJK play I was digusted by his arrogance but you gotta admit, his performances since 2010 on heated moments and important tournaments are near perfect.

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    #36
    I gave you the examples of Wang Nan's thyroid cancer in 2005 and Zhang Yining's 11 shots in a single year of 2002. There was no media report until years after. The CCTV journalists such as Li Wujun knew, the coaches knew and some of their teammates knew. There was no media coverage not because Wang Nan and Zhang Yining were not important or famous or successful, simply because they did not want to make people "panic". There was news about Wang Hao with very serious injury with his right elbow, Ma Lin with wrist and ankle injures who was the person of fewest injuries in CNT at that time. Fang Bo had such a serious wrist injury in 2013 that kept him away from training and trials for almost a year. If you think the male players above are not "successful" to make the case, let's take a look at male players with Grand Slam. In the final of 2000 Sydney Olympic Games, Kong Linghui twisted his ankle in the second set against Jan-Ove Waldner and he finally won the match without making the opponent notice his injury at all. This ankle injury is one of the reason that made him decide to retire in 2006. In 2010 Ma Long was found to have hairline fracture in his ankle but he managed to beat Wang Hao in the final of 2010 Asian Games, a month later.

    Back to Zhang Jike, he had waist and shoulder injuries and he got 8-9 shots for those injuries. More shots than Ma Long and Xu Xin for sure; fewer than Zhang Yining, the only two rounds of Grand Slam, for sure. For Zhang Jike's recent ankle injury during shooting of a variety show, there was no fracture at all. He withdrew six times within four months. You never lose if you never play.

    Quote Originally Posted by ping fun
    I read every post here & what i saw was bringing zjk down to a very low level which is not interesting. Malong & zjk are two active grandslam which can make todays tt more interesting , so if u guys doesnt like him or hate him , hate him but pls dont ruin his picture in this forum . I cant remeber a CNT male player that had more serious injury than zjk . if there were any , for sure china's media would have shared that cause they reflect every single news .Well it's true that zjk is doing good but it has a reason . he hasnt played for about 6 months due to injury and it's not an excuse . even with this little time of playing zjk did well in first 4 game in qualification . But in the end every one has their own opinion . what i want is to see zjk play more and more ......

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    #37
    Quote Originally Posted by rainneverever
    I gave you the examples of Wang Nan's thyroid cancer in 2005 and Zhang Yining's 11 shots in a single year of 2002. There was no media report until years after. The CCTV journalists such as Li Wujun knew, the coaches knew and some of their teammates knew. There was no media coverage not because Wang Nan and Zhang Yining were not important or famous or successful, simply because they did not want to make people "panic". There was news about Wang Hao with very serious injury with his right elbow, Ma Lin with wrist and ankle injures who was the person of fewest injuries in CNT at that time. Fang Bo had such a serious wrist injury in 2013 that kept him away from training and trials for almost a year. If you think the male players above are not "successful" to make the case, let's take a look at male players with Grand Slam. In the final of 2000 Sydney Olympic Games, Kong Linghui twisted his ankle in the second set against Jan-Ove Waldner and he finally won the match without making the opponent notice his injury at all. This ankle injury is one of the reason that made him decide to retire in 2006. In 2010 Ma Long was found to have hairline fracture in his ankle but he managed to beat Wang Hao in the final of 2010 Asian Games, a month later.

    Back to Zhang Jike, he had waist and shoulder injuries and he got 8-9 shots for those injuries. More shots than Ma Long and Xu Xin for sure; fewer than Zhang Yining, the only two rounds of Grand Slam, for sure. For Zhang Jike's recent ankle injury during shooting of a variety show, there was no fracture at all. He withdrew six times within four months. You never lose if you never play.
    But zjk has never pretended to have injury . he HAS injury . the injuries of the examples you made above was not as long as zjk's . as i remember , due to his powerful game style , most of the time had injuries . but even with back & shoulder injury he managed to beat a powerful malong in 2014 on that famous match . so talking about zjk using his injury as an excuse is what you unsuccesfully have made in your mind .even liu guoliang has ordered to have a strong rehabilitation team for his healing as soon as possible you know why ?? it's not because of his fan girls... no ... . its be cause Liu guoliang believes in zhang jike .

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    #38
    Well, when Zhang Jike was beaten by Ma Long or someone else, people always use Zhang Jike's injuries as an excuse. But when Zhang Jike beated Ma Long in World Cup 2014 by a small margin, did anyone talk about Ma Long's injuries? Ma Long had a bad waist injury and was not even able to play in the SF of CSSTL in Aug 2014. As I mentioned, Ma Long had a long-lasting ankle injury. He got this injury in 2006 in WTTC team event trials. He finished the match after a temporary treatment and lost to Chen Qi. The trials were on air and Liu Guoliang criticized him without mercy. Liu guoliang used Kong Linghui's 2000 Olymipic Games as an example and said Ma Long should have not been affected by the injury during the match because it was only an injury on the body not on the mind.


    The rehabilitation team for Zhang Jike's ankle injury is quite funny. Zhang Jike's coach Xiao Zhan showed some pictures of the doctors on his Weibo. Please try to read Chinese words on the doctors' T-shirts.

    Quote Originally Posted by ping fun
    But zjk has never pretended to have injury . he HAS injury . the injuries of the examples you made above was not as long as zjk's . as i remember , due to his powerful game style , most of the time had injuries . but even with back & shoulder injury he managed to beat a powerful malong in 2014 on that famous match . so talking about zjk using his injury as an excuse is what you unsuccesfully have made in your mind .even liu guoliang has ordered to have a strong rehabilitation team for his healing as soon as possible you know why ?? it's not because of his fan girls... no ... . its be cause Liu guoliang believes in zhang jike .

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    #39
    To reverse this and give you an example since the ML ZJK rivalry is probably the hottest in TT discussion, are ML tactics and technique not good enough or dominant enough when he lost 3 times to WH or against koki niwa lee sang su, boll , samsonov? When he faced a crazy jung young sik who posed problems to both ZJK and him ?


    There are definitely some turning points in a match and in one's career (imagine what zhang jike fans would say about ma long if he lost that match against youngsik 3-0 4-1 loss was not as far away as it may seem) , personally I don't like to judge players superficially and by results only. ZJK could be world champ since 2009 if he was allowed to participate in singles, same goes for ML if he had a better grip on wang hao. Fans like ZJK more because he delivers in style in those turning points and crucial moments, at least this how I interpret the whole ZJK crazy fan bandwagon.

    It's those turning points that make a player what he is ZJK simply grabbed the opportunity earlier, ML was ready in chinese national games 2013 where he finally managed to beat wang hao and FZD in the final . I'm not saying ZJK is better overall or deserves more praise but since you like to present facts all of the above are some undeniable facts also.

    We also have to take other factors into consideration to evaluate a player's worth. It is "fair" to say that ML clinched the titles later than "expected" based on his previous results (of course this is only a fan's impression because ML was destroying everoyne till ZJK burst in 2010) and fast growth. BUT for this late success the coaching staff is also to "blame" .

    They knew MA LOng's underperfoming and choking problems since 2007 and believe me as an amateur/recreational coach myself , identifying the problem is easy most of the times but to actually understand what causes it and how to counter it or use it to the player's advantage is one of the most difficult tasks a teacher (whatever he is teaching) has to address

    So it took the coaches years to understand that ML needed a more humane and "softer" approach to open himself up and talk/face his problems as you can see in the video below



    Remember the ML "drinking" incident a few months ago ? It is happening as a routine since 2010 and is used as a method for ML to relax.

    What Im saying is different players need different approach. The chinese strict and scholding method to a player worked perfectly for zhang jike but it was an utter failure for ma long. Ma long needed a more "western" approach

    LGL has stated several times that characters like ML WLQ WH were highly affected and sad when the coaches/fans addressed their mistakes/results or scholded them , others like ma lin or ZJK were pissed off and they wanted to prove them wrong
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    #40

    Stats of CNT players against non-CNT players 2017

    I think there are three issues getting confused here. They are separate issues.

    1) ZJK's technique and skill.
    2) ZJK's injuries.
    3) ZJK's attitude.

    They are not the same.

    1) ZJK's technique is top notch. If he is in form and healthy he is one of the top 2 CNT players which is actually why LGL has bent over backwards for him.

    2) ZJK's injuries: are they real or not? I think some of them are real. But I think that his attitude does allow us to question some of the withdrawals from matches. Why have there been so many tournaments he entered and then withdrew in the middle with the injury.

    There are so many stories of athletes who played through injuries and persevered. And there are many who had many injuries and did not play through them and missed games that ultimately hurt their whole team.

    Here is a story: the New England Patriots (American Football team) had this quarterback who was a great talent and expected to be one of the best quarterbacks in the league. His name was Drew Bledsoe. The coach of the Patriots, Bill Belichick, decided he no longer wanted Bledsoe on the team. He was injured to often and this, Belichick felt, undermined his role as the leader of the offense. The press and the fans gave Belichick a lot of bad press for entertaining the idea of a change in quarterbacks.

    So, against all the traditional opinions about how Bledsoe would be a hall of fame quarterback and one of the best ever, Belichick dropped Bledsoe in favor of a tough kid who had not proven himself yet and who nobody, except Belichick, thought was all that talented. That rookie quarterback was Tom Brady who will go down, for sure, as one of the best quarterbacks ever.

    Brady played through injuries. Game in, game out. He is a tough player and the kind of quarterback you would want leading your team.

    In TT things are different. But ZJK has not been the guy who plays through injuries, never quits and never lets people know how hurt he is.

    Different people are different. My guess is that most of the injuries are real. But add them to ZJK's attitude and you have the makings of a problem.

    But don't confuse his injuries and his attitude with his technique, skillz and abilities. The skillz, abilities and technique are there. But the health and the attitude may be a problem.


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    Last edited by UpSideDownCarl; 03-19-2017 at 10:00 PM.
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