What is the most effective way of winning points in table tennis?

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In this video, I highlight five different ways of winning points in table tennis: spin, speed, ball placement, power and disruption.

Which of these methods is the best? Which should you focus on?

This video features the point winning skills of top player and coach Craig Bryant.



Posted on 02/12/2022
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9 thoughts on “What is the most effective way of winning points in table tennis?”

  1. I find the serve is the most under-utilised aspect of TT. A lot of players seem to use the serve simply as a way of getting the ball in play to their opponent. A really good thought-out serve gives you the best advantage you can get in a point. Either fast, spin, long, short, specific placement or a combination of these can set you up to win the point. Iā€™m constantly working out different serves for different opponents plus adapting my favourite serves constantly. My current favourite is backhand fast corner to corner swivelling my hips to get more speed whilst disguising the spin between top, chop, side and no. I also disguise the same action and put the serve down the line instead of across the table and occasionally throw in a short serve that drops over the side if possible and even edges occasionally.

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    • Great video, Tom. I must also say that Graham makes an excellent point regarding the importance of serves and serve variation. Although books/coaches regularly make the point that the serve process should be “visualized” or at least thought thru from start to finish before even launching the ball upward out of the palm, I doubt many players –at least at non-professional levels — actually serve that way.

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      • I am SURE…that professional players think it thru!
        Of course …they are playing much higher caliber of player so the details are even more important.
        Also slight variations are more important. A pro will not be fooled by spin direction… recognizing how much spin is more critical.

        Reply
  2. Dear Tom,

    I am a senior citizen playing Table tennis for almost 50 years in club (Pune, India) but am not at all a very proficient or a professional paddler. However, I am so much interested in technical info and technique of this really wonderful game.

    I observed Wang Hao dethroning Wang Liqin mostly in China National championship final very very impressively by one major strategy…

    Deep strokes almost on edge of table, comprised of combinations of sidespin and topspins, RPB & penhold forehand, in ELBOW ROOM of Wang Liqin..

    Very effective strategy especially when sidespin is more than topspin…say 60%+40%

    Was amazing to watch… Wang Hao became NUMERO UNO soon..

    Reply
  3. For me, it all depends upon my opponent’s game as to how I try to win points.

    It’s all about discovering whether your opponent has a particular weakness on his forehand or backhand and going relentlessly after that weakness.

    If my opponent is a defensive player, I will target his weaker defensive side with my attacking strokes, to win the majority of my points.

    If my opponent likes attacking, I generally push the ball low with backspin to his weaker side, normally the backhand, but sometimes his or her forehand is weaker.

    It’s all about coming up with a game plan that your opponent dislikes the most for their style of game, which therefore gives me the best chance to win most of my points.

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  4. I’m best at placement , improving at spin ( slowly getting more consistent at opening up ) , less reliable on speed / power (too easily overhit ) , okay at disruption !

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  5. Fair enough, but you have failed to mention what happens after you serve these particular serves. Do you win the point outright or do you get generally get a weak return that you then put away?

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  6. The most effective way of winning points in table tennis is playing someone worse in playing ability than yourself. That is by far the easiest and most effective way of winning points, matches, as well as having a good win.

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