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  1. Thomas Jeffcott is offline
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    #1

    Juniors being mistreated in local league by grumpy senior players

    I am 24 now but I still remember that as a junior growing up playing in England there were so many times where I would beat senior players and they couldn't handle it and would started whining and complaining, coming up with every excuse under the sun as to why they lost. I very rarely got encouragement or praise from any adults other than my coaches and team mates.

    I never paid much attention to it or cared much as I have quite a thick skin and I realised that losing to someone much younger who has been playing far less must be frustrating. However, this still is no excuse and isn't a good way to be introducing younger players into the sport. Playing in local leagues as an adult I still see it on a regular basis and am maybe even more aware of it now.

    Another problem with this is the league committees in England very rarely do anything about it and repeat offenders continually go unpunished. So I guess my questions are: Does this happen in your country/local league? Also is there anything more that should be done about this?

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  2. Garrison is offline
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    #2
    When I think back to my junior days it actually felt pretty good when seniors were raging and complaining, it told me that they take me serious. It was actually more encouraging than telling me how good I am for my age after beating me...

    But maybe they are more whiny in England than Germany

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    #3
    I think its a common psycologycal reaction, usually coloured by some national mentality peculiarities.
    It would be good the personal mentality to come over, but its rare.

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    #4
    Out in Korea when I met my senior mentor in an important competition, everybody knew I was strong enough to challenge him this time, then, his girlfriend came and gently reminded me to respect who taught me the game. That made me think about what should I do during the game. At the end I beat him but my mentor came and hugged me after the game and told me he is happy his ward has come of age. It was the best feeling !!!

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  5. Garrison is offline
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    #5
    Quote Originally Posted by drunix80
    Out in Korea when I met my senior mentor in an important competition, everybody knew I was strong enough to challenge him this time, then, his girlfriend came and gently reminded me to respect who taught me the game. That made me think about what should I do during the game. At the end I beat him but my mentor came and hugged me after the game and told me he is happy his ward has come of age. It was the best feeling !!!
    You watch too much anime man

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    #6


    Yeah, but sumtimes relity is as pink as anime in slowmotion. But rare.

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  7. Medax is offline
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    #7
    originally posted by Thomas Jeffcott
    I am 24 now but I still remember that as a junior growing up playing in England there were so many times where I would beat senior players and they couldn't handle it and would started whining and complaining, coming up with every excuse under the sun as to why they lost. I very rarely got encouragement or praise from any adults other than my coaches and team mates.

    I never paid much attention to it or cared much as I have quite a thick skin and I realised that losing to someone much younger who has been playing far less must be frustrating. However, this still is no excuse and isn't a good way to be introducing younger players into the sport. Playing in local leagues as an adult I still see it on a regular basis and am maybe even more aware of it now.
    There is no reason for this other than them being grumpy old sods who like a good old moan. !!! I personally believe its wrong and I would congratulate anyone, whether they beat me or not.


    originally posted by Thomas Jeffcott
    Another problem with this is the league committees in England very rarely do anything about it and repeat offenders continually go unpunished. So I guess my questions are: Does this happen in your country/local league? Also is there anything more that should be done about this?
    This is symptomatic of any sport in the UK where the players are "grass-roots", non professionals and the league is volunteer lead !

    Officials don't want to punish/argue as the main reason they do it is for the love of the game and usually because no-one else wants to take it on.

    Players don't want to be bothered with the politics as they play for fun and a bit of a laugh. Yes you will always get those in the higher divisions that take the game more seriously, but that's the playing of it, not the administration and running of things.

    Put both of these together and you have a committee that are hesitant to penalise or upset people and players that don't really give a stuff and probably won't listen to those "power mad, jumped up, self important bureaucrats" (I've heard MUCH worse names ).

    So at the end of it all, these players will always continue to do what they have done and their committees will always continue to turn a blind-eye, wrong perhaps, but that's the way it is.
    the only thing I have done in the past is to embarrass them in front of their team mates saying things like "come on, their just a kid you miserable old sod " ... might turn the attention to you, but at least they aren't picking on the kids

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  8. TableTennisTom is offline
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    #8
    Ha! Yes I have come across plenty of grumpy old men in local league table tennis. They don't like losing to juniors for sure. And I have witnessed some very ungracious behaviour when they have lost to female players too. It is not pleasant to witness. I remember one time playing local league in London when two 60+ year old's were playing each other and were winding each other up. Ended up with one player grabbing a chair and trying to whack the other player. I had to separate them and was fortunate not to get a chair over my head in the process. It's a shame that some players have to behave in such a way. It's only table tennis after all.

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  9. Ilia Minkin is offline
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    #9
    Quote Originally Posted by TableTennisTom
    Ended up with one player grabbing a chair and trying to whack the other player. I had to separate them and was fortunate not to get a chair over my head in the process.
    It made me laugh as I imagined it I have never seen things like that. Only a dude who threw his racket all the time (not at others).
    Last edited by Ilia Minkin; 09-28-2017 at 06:49 PM.

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    #10
    I've just discussed the matter with my son, who used to play TT and football in Bath, when he was in the Uni of Bath. He told me he had never stroke with such a behaviour, neither in Bath, nor in Bristol, but I think it maybe just because he was a part of a multicultural international society.
    Here in Bulgaria I've never seen such behaviour in any club.

  11. Baal is offline
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    #11
    It happened to me once or twice long long ago when I was a junior and I took a lot of satisfaction from it.

    In the US the complaint I hear most is that juniors are often improving so fast that their ratings are below their true level, so they wipe up in ratings events. I don't play many tournaments now, and the ones I do play in are local and are all open events, so it doesn't come up for me.

    Fundamentally, if you lose to someone better, well that's what happened.

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  12. darucla is offline
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    #12
    As someone with all the experience of a junior but all the handicaps of a sexagenarian, I really enjoy watching the kids improve dramatically over relatively short periods of time. I try to help out on the junior training nights as well, trying to work out who among the 10 year-olds will be beating me in 6 months. The sport in the UK at least definitely needs more youngsters playing, and we should encoutage them as much as we can.

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    Last edited by darucla; 09-28-2017 at 11:47 PM. Reason: typo

  13. Thomas Jeffcott is offline
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    #13
    Quote Originally Posted by darucla
    As someone with all the experience of a junior but all the handicaps of a sexagenarian, I really enjoy watching the kids improve dramatically over relatively short periods of time. I try to help out on the junior training nights as well, trying to work out who among the 10 year-olds will be beating me in 6 months. The sport in the UK at least definitely needs more youngsters playing, and we should encoutage them as much as we can.
    If all experienced players did this and had your attitude TT in the UK would thrive.

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  14. izra is offline
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    #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Medax
    This is symptomatic of any sport in the UK where the players are "grass-roots", non professionals and the league is volunteer lead !
    reminds me of a situation in the local recreational league. it goes like this:

    in this league the non-playing team members are umpires, the home team umpires the first match, the guests umpire the second etc.

    3rd match is being played and the home team is not doing good. their player, an elderly gentleman of around 70 years of age is already known for "imagining" edge shots when he needs one. in a crucial situation his shot goes off the table and he yells "SORRY!"... his opponent, also an elderly gentleman of around 65 years of age asks "are you kidding me?" to which the home team player responds "it touched the edge! ask the umpire!"

    now mind you, this is the third match so the umpire is from the home team, he is also an elderly gentleman close to 70 years of ago. he looks at his team mate, confused, and starts stuttering "yes! yes! it touched the edge!"

    as this is not a small hall, the people who were around, either playing or having a drink start telling them that the ball was nowhere near the edge. but the home team is not having it. the guest player starts protesting saying the umpire didn't even see what happened before his team mate talked him into it but the umpire replies "i am the umpire and i say it touched!" to which the guest player replies "you're no umpire, you're a tw*t!"

    at this point the umpire who is also a member of the home team is horrified by this vulgar use of language and he wants to terminate the whole match. the guest player says "okay i don't care about the damn point, let's just play." but the umpire is not having it. he is extremely offended by being called a tw*t and he says the match is over and the guests just lost because of offensive behaviour.

    his team backs him up and the match is terminated, and an official document about the whole situation is hand written on the back of the match scoring sheet. the document is submited to the league official, who happens to be me. so together with all the other results from that week in my mail, i get an unfinished score sheet and in the back it says, written in capital letters in shaky hand writing "MATCH TERMINATED BECAUSE A GUEST PLAYER CALLED THE UMPIRE A TWAT!"...

    i called members of both teams, listened to their stories, then i asked them who else was in the hall and called each and every one of them, so after i've had enough witnesses, i wrote an official verdict that in my opinion there was not enough reason to terminate the match and since the guests wanted to continue playing i gave the guest team the point.

    the home team moaned about it ofcourse, but not too much as they knew they would have lost anyway if they kept playing and that's why they acted all offended and terminated the match in the first place.

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    Last edited by izra; 09-30-2017 at 12:00 AM.

  15. Baal is offline
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    #15
    After reading that I am now officially happy we don't have leagues here!

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  16. izra is offline
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    #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Baal
    After reading that I am now officially happy we don't have leagues here!
    oh you should see our recreational leagues... a total of 22 leagues with 14 teams. around a 1000 players of all levels, ages, playing styles and life issues. all volunteer based, the regulations are loose and their enforcement even looser. in fact, the only thing you could consistently expect to see on a league match is a lot of beer getting consumed. after playing there for some years my experience against wacky styles and illegal rubbers is only matched by my mental toughness.

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    Last edited by izra; 09-29-2017 at 11:44 PM.

  17. TTHopeful is offline
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    #17
    I know some young kids who lost a lot of interested playing in the leagues. The problem also is they finish to late and there is not much fun element to them...

  18. BeGo is offline
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    #18
    Quote Originally Posted by izra
    reminds me of a situation in the local recreational league. it goes like this:

    in this league the non-playing team members are umpires, the home team umpires the first match, the guests umpire the second etc.

    3rd match is being played and the home team is not doing good. their player, an elderly gentleman of around 70 years of age is already known for "imagining" edge shots when he needs one. in a crucial situation his shot goes off the table and he yells "SORRY!"... his opponent, also an elderly gentleman of around 65 years of age asks "are you kidding me?" to which the home team player responds "it touched the edge! ask the umpire!"

    now mind you, this is the third match so the umpire is from the home team, he is also an elderly gentleman close to 70 years of ago. he looks at his team mate, confused, and starts stuttering "yes! yes! it touched the edge!"

    as this is not a small hall, the people who were around, either playing or having a drink start telling them that the ball was nowhere near the edge. but the home team is not having it. the guest player starts protesting saying the umpire didn't even see what happened before his team mate talked him into it but the umpire replies "i am the umpire and i say it touched!" to which the guest player replies "you're no umpire, you're a tw*t!"

    at this point the umpire who is also a member of the home team is horrified by this vulgar use of language and he wants to terminate the whole match. the guest player says "okay i don't care about the damn point, let's just play." but the umpire is not having it. he is extremely offended by being called a tw*t and he says the match is over and the guests just lost because of offensive behaviour.

    his team backs him up and the match is terminated, and an official document about the whole situation is hand written on the back of the match scoring sheet. the document is submited to the league official, who happens to be me. so together with all the other results from that week in my mail, i get an unfinished score sheet and in the back it says, written in capital letters in shaky hand writing "MATCH TERMINATED BECAUSE A GUEST PLAYER CALLED THE UMPIRE A TWAT!"...

    i called members of both teams, listened to their stories, then i asked them who else was in the hall and called each and every one of them, so after i've had enough witnesses, i wrote an official verdict that in my opinion there was not enough reason to terminate the match and since the guests wanted to continue playing i gave the guest team the point.

    the home team moaned about it ofcourse, but not too much as they knew they would have lost anyway if they kept playing and that's why they acted all offended and terminated the match in the first place.
    They still young at heart

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  19. darucla is offline
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    #19
    Last Friday, I helped out at a local junior tournament, for non-league players. We had about 17 under 12s, and a handful of under 18s. It was a lot of fun, first and foremost. There was one 6 year old who had a killer forehand. Really. He just hadn't quite worked out when not to use it, so missed a lot of shots that should have been on his backhand. But if he develops a strong BH, he'll be a challenge.

    The only downside is that he was wearing a football shirt, obviously a Messi fan, and also plays football, which is much more visible in this country. That is what will take his attention in coming years, unless table tennis can hold onto him.

    Incidentally, umpiring these matches is not easy. The kids tend to play on at a pace, almost like they are living in a different time frame to an oldie like me.

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    #20
    You do get a few characters here and there but they are rude to everyone, regardless of age. I think 95%+ of my opponents have been courteous.

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