Strategies against short pips penholders.

by Varghese on December 3, 2008

Sponsor Ad: TableTennisStore.US - 1000 XIOM, TSP, JOOLA, CHAMPION table tennis products! complete table tennis store and ping pong store for table tennis players

The above match is between Bastian Stegar of Germany and He Zhi Wen of Spain. Bastian Stegar uses grippy inverted rubbers on his blade. He Zhi Wen uses Pen hold blade with a spinny short pips on his forehand. He uses only one side of his paddle.

Bastian Stegar is a good top spin player who can generate heavy top spin against top spin as well as underspin. He has spent many training sessions with Dr.Neubauer who is famous for his frictionless long pips. Bastian is good at reading spin and looping better against it. But he is struggling to death in this video. Let us look at some of the strategies we can adapt against penholders of this style.


1. First of all Bastian shows his lack of experience with such a short pips player. The short pips can generate variety of spins compared to long pips. The strategies for playing against long pips and short pips are different. Because of the variety of spin the short pips can generate, it is important to have our own attacking strategies. Giving control to the shorts pips player who can chop the balls well and attack is equavalent to losing.

2. The players like Bastian are trained well for playing away from the table. That is the major problem Bastian is facing here. Every time he steps out from the table, He Zhi Wen takes the wide angle to finish points. He Zhi Wen pushes the players further back with his fast push as well as hit. These shots only can be looped, and that forces Bastian to go further away from the table. Against choppers and hitters like He Zhi Wen, it is important to play close to the table. The ball needs to be hit as soon as it rises and before it turns with side spin. This is where the 3rd ball attack is very important.

3. A good amount of balls that come from He Zhi Wen are fast and close to “side under”. These shots are hard to loop and can’t generate long medium arc curves. The end result is these shots end up in the center court and the opponent can easily hit. So, it is required to generate heavy arc loops which can land close to the end of the table for a player like He ZhiWen not able to return. The looping after the ball falls is safer than looping while the ball rising - a little scopping is required to accelerate the ball up and then more forward.

4. The short pips hitters like He Zhi Wen are comfortable with balls of height to his chest area. When the balls have high arc, it is hard for him to hit. That is another way to tackles these kinds of players.

5. The short “no spin serves” that can land in their out of reach areas can get points fast.

6. These short pips players have long serves to your body. They will take advantage of the third ball attack after these long serves. It is a good strategy to keep little away from the table and gives some room. You can jump in if the serves are short.

7. The good placements can put them into trouble. It will give less reaction time for them to switch between defensive and attack strokes.

8. Changing the pace of the ball can force them to errors. A heavy loop action and slow paced ball to their pips is a good strategy.

9. In this match, you will notice that a good percentage of the points He Zhi Wen has earned from Bastian’s errors. Bastian has a faster equipment set up. The speed take precedence over spin, so the ball has more tendency to slip before getting control. A slower paddle helps in the situation like this. It is also important to close the paddle on the follow through.

Sponsor Ad: TableTennisStore.US - 1000 XIOM, TSP, JOOLA, CHAMPION table tennis products! complete table tennis store and ping pong store for table tennis players

Leave a Comment