Sunday, May 30, 2010

ITTF Board of Directors vote - min friction limit remains

I wrote Adham Sharara about my disappointment with the BoD decision to vote down the Swedish proposal. I explained my concern that many of the BoD members may not really understand the impact of the decision, and that they are very likely easily swayed by a few dominant members, who may not necessarily have the interest of our sport at heart. Below is his response.

Adham wrote:
The reality is as follows:

- In any group there are more influential people and less influential people
- In any group there are people who care more and people who care less

This is normal. The ITTF's Board of Directors is no exception. But this Board is very knowledgeable and all of the members are passionate about table tennis. The Swedish proposition did not receive much support, only about 4-5 members voted in favour (43 members in attendance). The real reasons are as follows:

- This is NOT an issue of any importance at the ITTF level
- Associations are not forced to implement the rule in their country. In fact the English Board member voted against the proposal and said that in England they allow players to play with any equipment they want
- Most felt that frictionless long pimples are bad for our sport
- Most felt that it is better to develop young players without the long pips frictionless rubber.

Also based on talking to more than one hundred presidents of national associations, it seems that the frictionless long pips rubber is an issue only in very few countries, it is not as your members think. In fact the problem is in a very small minority. Most associations reported no decrease in participation since the ban.

I do always appreciate that Adham takes the time to reply to me, and I commend him for this. 

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Swedish proposal to remove friction limit DEFEATED!

Although it's not yet official, the word is out already that the proposal (see last post) was defeated... appearantly the vote was quite overwhelming too... only a few members vote FOR it. The Swedish board member made a good argument, but most of the arguments against were stating that it is not necessary to change the current rule because national association do not need to follow it!

Personally I find this rediculous! Surely most of these member have been around for a while and realise that almost all National association simply follow the ITTF rules and regulations! An argument this weak would have to make you wonder what their real reasons are for voting against they really have the interest of our sport at heart, or are there a few dominant members that have an alterior motive? Do the other members really understand the impact of this decision, or are they easily swayed by the opinion of the more dominant members...

I'd personally like to thank those people that have written the BoD member to explain their concerns. I have also written 2 of the members but have been most disappointed that I did not even get a reply! It appears the same thing happened to many others that have written, although I have heard that a few did reply and seemed to by symphathetic towards our concerns.

Where to now? Well I'm not ready to accept this decisison so I'm going to look into what our options are... will keep you posted...