Sang-Am Tourney perhaps my last Tourney in Korea

says 2023 Certified Organ Donor
says 2023 Certified Organ Donor
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KFTTC got together with the Seoul Vietnamese student association and a local TT club (Sang-Am) for a farewell tourney to Der_Echte. I am the one with a short haircut and big arms/legs. I leave next month after 4 years in Korea. I got a LOT of pics and war stories. My student friends got together, led by TTD member BricePhan and arranged a typical Korean club tourney for my going away fun.

I describe SOME of the action, but you simply had to have been there to get it all. it was a BLAST and STIFF competition at every level.

Sang Am Tourney summary... BricePham brought 8 Vietnamese student association competitors we had 3 other foreigners a Belgian and two usa along with over a dozen ringers from the Sang Am club.

There were 5 groups of 4 to 5 players for round robin with 3 advancing to knockout stage and the rest in the losers bracket separate tourney 1st place 6 match balls. Tourney 1st place was a new sheet of 2.1 Tibhar Aurus 2nd place 12 matchballs 3rd 4th place 6 matchballs.

The local players were NOT pushovers... They pushed... HARD! Many of them has skills two full levels higher than their division.

In just the very first knockout match William thought for sure he was going to get his train ticket punched and stamped EARLY DEPARTURE REQUIRED. I faced a Div 4 player who had better skillz than me! He could flick my short serves, he could fool me the first few times on serve spin, he coul place the ball well, he would attack with steparound finish winner at high percentage, he could keep the ball short at will... you name it, seemed like he could do it better, PLUS, I had to give him 3 point handicap (2+1+1 system) him being Div 4 and Me Div 2. Somehow, I gave him some lower percentage stuff and edged him out. Still can't remember exactly how I managed it. Then, I had to face a Div 1 Lefty Penholder who can slap the crap outta your best shots by you. I was struggling big time to avoid getting ventilated by rocket shots from impossible locations. That Div 1 player could hit ANYTHING for a winner no matter how much spin or pace or location you put on it... or at least it seemed. I changed up enough stuff and learned how to retrun his tricky serves and let him defeat himself, yet still have no real good idea of exactly what I did to accomplish that. Lefty penholder was bad news for me, difficult to get a good chance and the ones you landed, he crushed 75% of the time... right back at you or by you with next to zero spin FAST.

Greg Bartz, William and Hanh MiLe all made it to semis. Greg fought his way through, MiLe crushed all her opponents ruthlessly like Conan and William simply fought for his life vs superior opponents. No clue how William (Der_Echte) advanced to this stage. He was up against better players on a hot streak at every stage except for the semis. Lots of great rallies.

in the semis, Wiliam faced an O50 Div 5 (WAY under-rated lady) OX LP/Inverted player. tehse tough ladies OX LP bump the ball right at you, then step around and crush it down your throat while yelling a war cry and dancing a jig each time. Fortunately, I have faced this type of player and have an OX LP bat I use in practice to learn them, so it wasn't a problem, even if I gave her a 4 point handicap per game. I could have given her the maximum handicap of 7 points and still won. I play vs OX LP Div 4 or Div 5 players too well for them to threaten me. If you do not play well vs OX LP and the O50 lady is under-rated, you cough up handicap points and she wins point after point. If you have the 2 wing spin game and the serves and shots to set it up and execute, you have few problems. You show a heavy cut, then go to no-spin short or primarily long/deep/fast topspin serves to get a high ball for samsh, a block/out, or if they get the OX on it, it comes back long cut and you can finish that ball easily if you know it is coming. Unfortunately, I think this lady faced Brice and punched his ticket. I got revenge for all her victims winning (3-0) 11-6, 7, 8 giving her a 4 point handicap.

Greg and William made to the finals and played a wonderful match worthy of tv broadcast.

Match went back and forth with both players taking charge and imposing their will for stretches. Very few misses. Most points were won by a winner from a prolonged spectacular rally. William threw the kitchen sink full force at Greg and he handled it enough. William had a good high percentage landing well placed spinny openers and Greg setup his share of finishing shots from some amazing positions. Greg is VERY difficult to control on serve receive, he usually finds a way to get what he wants and delivers the finish with very high percentage. You have to be right on target and know where he is going, which is not an easy thing vs him. I had my way on serve/attack as well, but you simply do NOT get very many winners on those second attacks in a rally, Greg simply finds a way to get to the ball and barely return it time and time again. You have to take at LEAST three balls to set up any kind of finish vs him. Greg is too crafty and mobile. I had a great day attacking, much higher landing percentage and I can tell you, Nexy Arirang and Tibhar Evolution are one tough GOOD setup for spin and power, FX soft be damned. it plays a LOT firmer, but with the control of an FX. I was attacking my azz off and Greg was making it real tough to hit through him. It was a great show most of those rallies.

William and Greg traded games. The match got to 2-2 and William moved ahead to get to 10-8. It wasnt over as Greg proved that point number 11 is a real tough point to win. Greg made deuce and smacked down two pretty winners to claim the match. I had him but Greg earned his win, could have gone either way and a match full of excitement and exciting play. Crowd got its money worth. William wore the living dogcrap out of Greg but was unable to finish. Greg showed his class.

What a great potentially LAST tourney for my time in Korea!

Some PICS...

TTD Members BricePhan and Der_Echte

bryce1.jpg


Greg and Der_Echte in uniform

greg2.jpg

Greg and Der_Echte with the prizes

greg3.jpg

The field waiting to play...

Seat 1.jpgSeat2.jpgseat3.jpg

Some of the action, bad shots are from cell phone, sorry...

greg1.jpgPic1.jpgserve1.jpgtt1.jpg
 

Dan

says editing a big TTD Team episode... stay tuned 👀

Dan

says editing a big TTD Team episode... stay tuned 👀
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Wow great write up! 4 years in Korea! Love how you said about the ringers haha. I bet a lot of older dudes in Korea are brilliant at TT! What an experience, very nice of them to make this tournament for you and your farewell.

What are your plans now buddy?
 
says 2023 Certified Organ Donor
says 2023 Certified Organ Donor
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dan, in a month, I have to go back to USA to finish my military career. In a year or two, I am DONE with military and that would be 30 (THIRTY !!) years military duty. Done. Finished. Finito. You get the idea. After that, my military pension is only good enough to pay for housing and a couple meals, so I gotta still work somewhere hehe. want to go back to Europe or Korea when I'm done.
 
says 2023 Certified Organ Donor
says 2023 Certified Organ Donor
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As for my time in Korea... MANY TT adventures and I obviously got the pics to back it up and remember it all after I get Alzheiers haha.

I could have had more adventures, but being full time military over here is not a 9-5 job at all.

I only took lessons 3x a week 20 minutes each, so whatever training I did here is very light by even the loosest amature measure. Still, it made a world of difference as I moved up 2 levels in the first two years. if I had another 6 months here, I would be Div 1. I am on the fringe, but being on the fringe is only going to get your tail kicked more often than not. You enter Div 1, you are Bruce lee entering the dragon and you had damned well be ready to rumble. Div 1 men do not mess around. they go for your jugular and more often than not sever it straight away if you are not truly that class. Gulf between div 1 and div 2 is HUGE! Almost same as difference between Div 4 and Div 2 in terms of class.
 

Dan

says editing a big TTD Team episode... stay tuned 👀

Dan

says editing a big TTD Team episode... stay tuned 👀
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Aug 2010
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Read 72 reviews
dan, in a month, I have to go back to USA to finish my military career. In a year or two, I am DONE with military and that would be 30 (THIRTY !!) years military duty. Done. Finished. Finito. You get the idea. After that, my military pension is only good enough to pay for housing and a couple meals, so I gotta still work somewhere hehe. want to go back to Europe or Korea when I'm done.

Wow that's an incredible achievement! 30 years congrats! Yeah sounds like you could get part time job etc, perhaps some tt coaching also, pass on the experience you gained in Korea :) Perhaps you will pass London one day! :D
 
says 2023 Certified Organ Donor
says 2023 Certified Organ Donor
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Dan, there is ZERO limit to what I can do or will do in the future. that is not brash talk, it is just fact. Problem is to identify and focus on the specific thing and do it. That Is a HUGE problem for anyone. I envision myself to be doing my thing in Europe where I LOVE IT!!! Yet, I have HUGE LOVE for Korean and speak near native and can wheel/deal over here as well. I claim a hometown in Europe as I still know people there personally and people still know and love/respect me there as well. I have my European/German/French way, as well as my Asian ways. Who knows what the future holds??!!

Hope I can figure my future soon enough and share it with everyone> As for being a TT coach, I do it some on a personal ONE to ONE basis, but opening a club and going for that in USA is something to be considered with deliberation and patience. I do not know enough of DAN's personal situation to determine his potential for success, but I have seen enough to deduct that Dan is easily quality folk. The fact he has opened this forum and expanded it is enough to show any potential joker his future potential.
 
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