Ding Ning Serve - Illegal?

This user has no status.
This user has no status.
Well-Known Member
Administrator
Oct 2010
4,105
6,390
12,740
Is Ding Ning Foul Serving?

Check out the picture below, let us know your thoughts

dingningfault.jpg
 
This user has no status.
This user has no status.
Member
Nov 2010
499
6
506
A lot of people are way too nitpicky about the serving rule. Words are by their very nature subject to interpretation, and the rules written regarding serving are no different. The writer of the rules purposely added the word nearly in the portion that says project the ball nearly vertical upwards, in order to allow some leeway. What is a correct definition of nearly? There isn't one. And that's the way it should be. You would utterly destroy sports if you defined and executed each rule too narrowly. Sports by their inherent nature need some level of wiggle room and flow, without having some umpire to barge their way into the game and unnecessarily affecting it. Frankly the amount of spin imparted by throwing the ball a little towards you is completely negligible.

"She does throw the ball upwards, but not the required height and she throws it towards her, allowing her to generate much more spin." is simply not true. A professional serve has so much spin that adding 1-2 rotations per second does absolutely nothing.

People also talk a ton about covering up the ball when the fact is, the video we see is completely different from the viewpoint that an opposing player gets. What looks like an illegal serve from our point of view may be perfectly visible to the opposing player. What should be the measure for whether a serve is illegal is if the opposing player brings it up with the referee. To have the referee interpret the rule excessively narrowly ruins the game. Especially considering the fact that the ref sits at the side of the table and thus his view of the serve is nothing like what the opposing player has.
 
This user has no status.
This user has no status.
Well-Known Member
May 2011
1,892
115
2,353
A lot of people are way too nitpicky about the serving rule. Words are by their very nature subject to interpretation, and the rules written regarding serving are no different. The writer of the rules purposely added the word nearly in the portion that says project the ball nearly vertical upwards, in order to allow some leeway. What is a correct definition of nearly? There isn't one. And that's the way it should be. You would utterly destroy sports if you defined and executed each rule too narrowly. Sports by their inherent nature need some level of wiggle room and flow, without having some umpire to barge their way into the game and unnecessarily affecting it. Frankly the amount of spin imparted by throwing the ball a little towards you is completely negligible.

"She does throw the ball upwards, but not the required height and she throws it towards her, allowing her to generate much more spin." is simply not true. A professional serve has so much spin that adding 1-2 rotations per second does absolutely nothing.

People also talk a ton about covering up the ball when the fact is, the video we see is completely different from the viewpoint that an opposing player gets. What looks like an illegal serve from our point of view may be perfectly visible to the opposing player. What should be the measure for whether a serve is illegal is if the opposing player brings it up with the referee. To have the referee interpret the rule excessively narrowly ruins the game. Especially considering the fact that the ref sits at the side of the table and thus his view of the serve is nothing like what the opposing player has.
I agree. Some of the faulted serves were called when the umpire was looking at Ding Ning's back. That's just ridiculous.
 
This user has no status.
This user has no status.
Well-Known Member
Feb 2012
2,010
1,439
4,713
Read 1 reviews
Yes it is illegal, but the issue is that these serves weren't picked up on earlier in the competition. The final is not the place to start being picky about serves. Shame.


so true , i dont believe throwing the ball into your body can create much more spin thats enough for someone to say that the server is in advantage...table tennis points are always unique and have countless variations so its pointless to argue about that . T

This rule is totally stupid , and if the ittf dont want to change it then at least give specific strict instructions to the umpires . calling a fault @ the olympics final and not in previous games is horrible for the publicity of the sport . The crowd cheered for ding ning just because after that injustice
 
This user has no status.
This user has no status.
Member
Nov 2010
499
6
506
Whether it is right or wrong, I think there is no reason to do the thing that people do not like. Ding Ning's fault.

What? that makes no sense.... the issue is entirely about whether it is right or wrong according to the rules. The players are rarely the one complaining about a serve. That ought to be thee measure of whether a serve is illegal or not. Not some clueless ref, who doesn't even see the serve from the correct viewpoint
 
This user has no status.
This user has no status.
Well-Known Member
Feb 2012
2,010
1,439
4,713
Read 1 reviews
anyway li xiao xia played better no matter what and deserved to win . that though doesnt change the fact that the umpire took away from ding her chance for a decent fight . She didnt train so hard for stupid rules to spoil her game , and in such a way ! the first time that the rule was set to action (for her games) was in this final only ! what happened to all the other fault serves that she made?
 
says ok, I will go back and make sure you have access. Be...
says ok, I will go back and make sure you have access. Be...
Well-Known Member
Nov 2010
3,575
5,920
10,356
Read 8 reviews
As best as I can tell from those pictures the ball certainly traveled 15 cm and is legal. This is especially true if the picture to the right shows the ball at something less than its maximum height. It is sufficiently close that the umpire is out of her mind for calling it in an Olympic final. But the umpire evidently wanted to make herself "important", instead of being honored for simply being there. I certainly hope she never gets to umpire a significant ITTF event again. When they changed these rules, it was just a matter of time before something like this happened, since the umpires are never in a position to see clearly.
 
This user has no status.
This user has no status.
Member
Jul 2011
51
1
53
the main problem with the situation is not if the serve is legal or not, it is if there was some intention to manipulate the spin of the serve with the toss. If she CLEARLY was just serving as normal and not having the intention of cheating, she should not be called. Also, where is the consistency of these calls? if your going to call that serve as illegal, you have to call all serves by most players illegal, and that would just ruin the game entirely.
 
This user has no status.
This user has no status.
Active Member
Sep 2011
913
66
1,009
Read 4 reviews
I've said this before, but it is hard to properly discern the legality of a serve from video unless you have a trained eye or know exactly what focal lengths and proper dimensions to measure the distances. In the above pictures we don't have a proper starting point. The photos do not show the point at which the ball leaves the palm of the hand. So because of this we have no reference point on when and where to measure the distance of the height of the toss. What looks like 3-4 inches here may in fact have been 6-8 inches because there's no starting point.
 
This user has no status.
This user has no status.
New Member
Aug 2012
1
0
1
I've just watched the Ding Ning/Li Xiao Xiao final on record, so coming late to the discussion. My partner and I were both totally depressed by what we saw. There were flashes were you thought this was going to turn in to a classic, and the whole thing was suddenly ruined by way over-the-top interventions from the umpire. That's how we felt about it anyway. Whilst we are not experts on the rules of table tennis, it seemed to me that there was nothing furtive or underhand about Ding Ning's serves, and they seemed to be going high enough, and at the right angles. And, as someone else has said here, Li Xiao Xiao certainly wasn't complaining. Surely, there are rules and there are rules? Surely, there has to be some leeway?
And as for being red-carded for towelling herself down...For heaven's sake, anyone could see that this was clearly a reaction to the umpire herself?! I think Ding Ning was actually in shock.

The only good thing that came out of it for us was the undeniable brilliance of Li Xiao Xiao. However, even the ability to enjoy that properly was marred by the way the umpire kept wading in. I don't think this umpire did herself huge favours. And meanwhile, I really hope Ding Ning is able to recover, and maybe we will get her act together for some great moments in Rio.

Paul
 
This user has no status.
This user has no status.
Member
Oct 2011
20
0
20
... But the umpire evidently wanted to make herself "important", instead of being honored for simply being there.

Absolutely agreed. In such an important match at such high standard, perhaps one warning of calling let would be good enough to deliver the message. A repeated intervention plus the double penalty points was way way over-killed, and had ruined the game completely ! No doubt LiXX was undeniably brilliant that night, but she would have able to win the game more convincingly rather than a lack luster ending riding on Ding Ning's crippled emotion.
 
This user has no status.
This user has no status.
Active Member
Apr 2011
676
42
719
Yes it is illegal, but the issue is that these serves weren't picked up on earlier in the competition. The final is not the place to start being picky about serves. Shame.

I have heard that there were a few fault serve called during semi or quarter finals from a similar umpire. But I could not recall on who? Anyone know?
 

Dan

says New video out with Dima, he shares a lot of great insights.

Dan

says New video out with Dima, he shares a lot of great insights.
Well-Known Member
Administrator
Aug 2010
6,987
4,354
16,264
Read 71 reviews
I watched this final live and was applaud by the umpire's decisions. Firstly Ding Ning was not faulted throughout the tournament and no players had complained about here serves. Secondly, giving her a red card as she used her towel to get rid of her tears was a disgrace.

Also, 5000 spectators went to the arena to watch an epic final and just ended up booing! And lets not forget it was Ding Ning's moment for a shot in the final of the London 2012 Olympics and that happened. Such a shame. This umpire is also known for being very strict and caused problems before. She should have never been able to umpire the Olympic final in the first place!
 
  • Like
Reactions: ducksick
Top