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The prestigious European Championships being held this year in Lisbon, Portugal at MEO Arena from September 24th-28th will be one of the first major international championships using the new plastic poly balls. ITTF has mandated that all ITTF sanctioned events will use non-celluloid plastic balls as of August, 2014. The Nittaku Premium 40+ ball is the official ball for the European Championships. Made in Japan, the Nittaku Premium 40+ Ball is the only ITTF-approved non-celluloid ball made outside of China.
Australian Olympian William Henzell received a proto-type of the new plastic table tennis ball at the 2012 World Championships in Dortmund. This excellent video shows his frank and thorough review of his test of the ball. Everyone is curious about the new balls and there are many questions that William addresses such as, "How differently will they play?", "Will there be less spin?", "Are they going to be faster or slower?". Also included in this Paddle Palace blog is a written transcription of his review.
Commencing on Tuesday 1st July 2014, all International Table Tennis Federation sanctioned and World Title events will be played using plastic composite balls instead of the traditional celluloid ball. There are no changes to the regulations already in place; plastic balls have been in accordance with regulations since the 1950′s. Table tennis events may still be played using celluloid balls. On the change, the ITTF President Adham Sharara stated: “Any change in sport usually divides the participants into three groups. The “optimists” who believe the change is for the best; the “pessimists” who believe the change is a disaster; and finally the “indifferent” who just go with the flow."
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