Ding Song is a former male Chinese table tennis player famous for his eccentric modern defensive style. As a defensive player, he is legendary for his unreasonably frequent and powerful counterattacks, almost as aggressive as other offensive players, which he combined with oddly spinning chops just like other choppers.
He is best known for having defeated Peter Karlsson in the men’s team final of the World Table Tennis Championships in 1995, thereby securing China’s victory. He also made it to the Men’s Singles semifinals before eventually losing to teammate Kong Linghui. During his career he won two gold medals with the team and one bronze medal in Singles at the World Table Tennis Championships. He retired from the Chinese team after the 1997 World Table Tennis Championships.
After playing in German leagues for a few years, Ding Song returned to China in 2003 and played in the China Table Tennis Super League until 2007. He also entered Shanghai Jiao Tong University in 2006, majoring in human resource management. In June 2009 he received a bachelor’s degree, and started working at SJTU as the coach of the university’s team.
During this interview he explains in great detail what is needed from a chopper to compete effectively in contemporary table tennis.
– About playing for the Chinese National Team, beating Peter Karlsson which secured China’s final victory in the World Table Tennis Championships in 1995, and not getting to play in the Olympic Games (7:18–10:01)
– How it may be
good to not see choppers for a period of time, because people get used to playing against certain styles and maybe that will help one extraordinary chopper to suddenly appear and impress everyone (12:11–13:14)