Chinese New Year: Abbeydale stars are in a league of their own!

Ken Chung in action at the Chinese Section of Abbeydale Table Tennis Club,based at Abbeydale Sports Club
Ken Chung in action at the Chinese Section of Abbeydale Table Tennis Club,based at Abbeydale Sports Club
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Abbeydale Table Tennis Club is the biggest of its kind in Sheffield - and is so popular, that it even boasts its own Chinese section!

Headed up by player Ken Chung, the club - housed in the grounds of Abbeydale Sports Club - boast nine teams, playing in the six divisions of the thriving Sheffield Table Tennis League.

Around 80 players are registered at any one time, with between 15 and 20 specifically belonging to the Chinese section.

“I joined the club around ten years ago,” Ken remembers.

“And word quickly spread. We’re already the biggest table tennis club in the city, and it’s grown more and more popular every year.

“We’ve even attracted a few lady members - a few of the wives of the players wanted to get involved!

“They play mainly for fun, but it keeps them active and gets them some exercise.

“If not, what else are they going to do? Sit in front of the television and not do any exercise at all?

“It’s quite a social club, we go out together often and there’s a really good spirit at the club.”

Abbeydale took almost a full complement of members to the England Open Table Tennis Championship, held at the English Institute of Sport back in 2009.

“Table tennis is getting increasingly popular in the city,” Ken adds.

“We’re definitely seeing that.

“Some people come to us having never played the game before, and some come having played the game for many, many years.

“Chinese players have always been successful at table tennis, but it’s not always just about that - we welcome everyone, from beginners to experienced players.

“There is a good spirit and some banter amongst the players, and I encourage anyone to come and give it a go for themselves.”

n The Chinese section of Abbeydale Table Tennis Club meet every Sunday afternoon, and play for around three hours. For more information on the club, or to join, email Ken on abbeydale_ttc@yahoo.co.uk.