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New Milestone Reached, Stars Emerge and Coaches Earn their Stripes
By: Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor

Christian Lillieroos makes his point in a clear manner  Photo By: Shashin Shodhan


Situated in the San Francisco Bay Area of California, the Fremont Table Tennis Academy was the recent home for an ITTF/PTT Coaches Course.

Self-funded the course commenced on Monday 11th June and concluded on Friday 15th June 2012.

Christian Lillieroos, former United States Team National Coach and currently a Board Member of the United States Table Tennis Association was the course conductor.

Furthermore, the course had a particular significance; it was the first ever to be held in the western region.

The course was a direct effect of a visit made almost two years earlier by Glenn Tepper, the ITTF Deputy Chief Executive and Executive Director - Development.

Result of ITTF Visit
“In October 2010, the United States Table Tennis Association introduced the ITTF Coach Education Programme, when Glenn Tepper conducted the first ITTF/PTT Level One Course in the United States”, explained Richard McAfee, the Chairman of the United States Coaching Advisory Committee. “With this course and its 16 participants, the United States Table Tennis Association Coaching now has reached a milestone of 100 plus coaches, who have gone through the ITTF Level One Course!”

Richard McAfee has been a major reason as the why the milestone has been reached.

Excellent Facilities
“The course featured the use of the excellent facilities of the Fremont Table Tennis Academy and was organized by head coach, Shashin Shodhan”, continued Richard McAfee. “The Academy is a full-time training centre known for its strong junior training programmes.”

Initiative Displayed
Furthermore, there was initiative shown in presenting what proved a most comprehensive programme.

“Christian Lillieroos invited several top-ranked Para athletes to take part in the Para Level One section of the course”, added Richard McAfee. “This along with Christian’s own background as the former Chairman of the International Paralympic Table Tennis Committee, added greatly to the presentation.”

Christian Lillieroos conducts a theory session at the ground breaking course
Photo by Shashin Shodhan

Para Table Tennis Players
Sebastian De Francesco, a Class 1 athlete; in addition to Emmanuel Shiu, Class 4 and Saurabh Bhartia, Class 8 attended; their presence added to the course and was greatly appreciated by all concerned.

“Their contributions made that day so much more special”, said a grateful Richard McAfee. “Our thanks to them.”

More Planned
A special occasion and there are more planned.

“The United States Table Tennis Association has four more regional self-funded ITTF/PTT Level One Courses scheduled for the summer of 2012, with the goal of having a total of 150 plus coaches going through the Level One training this year”, concluded Richard McAfee. “We will start ITTF Level Two Regional Courses in 2013.”

Putting theory into action; a practical session takes places under watchful eyes
Photo by Shashin Shodhan

Progress in All Spheres
Progress, rapid progress and there is currently progress in all spheres; three teenagers will represent the United States in the Women’s Team event at the forthcoming Olympic Games in the guise of Ariel Hsing, Lily Zhang and Erica Wu.

Add to that trio the name of Kanak Jha, who won the recent Boys’ Singles event at the ITTF Hopes Challenge in Falkenberg and the future is exciting.

New Era
Complementing the rising stars is the extensive coach education programme. Surely a new era for the United States beckons?

Star and Stripes; stars are emerging and everyone involved is earning their stripes.

A well-earned front row seat for Christian Lillieroos, surrounded by course members in Fremont
Photo by Shashin Shodhan



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