Front page of Los Angeles Times Sports Section July 8, 2011: It has been 40 years since Ping Pong Diplomacy helped pave the way for China to enter the world’s community and Tim Boggan is growing tired of the diplomacy involved in celebrating Ping Pong Diplomacy. In 1971, the table tennis historian was one of the first Americans to enter China since 1949. But he says the speeches commemorating the 40-year anniversary are full of “niceties” and “politeness” to the point that nobody listens. So when Boggan rises to talk about his unlikely trip to China he delivers an original oration every time…
Events Mark 40th Anniversary of China’s Re-Opening
Original Players – Current Olympic/ World Champions Coming July 5, 6
An elaborately staged Ping Pong Diplomacy “Rematch,” was held June 10-12, 2008 at the Nixon Library in Yorba Linda, CA. It commemorated the Ping Pong Diplomacy of 1971, when the Chinese surprised the World by inviting a U.S. table tennis team to go to China. It was an outstanding diplomatic move alright, for these guests of China comprised the first group of Americans to enter that country in over 20 years. There followed in 1972 the historic visit of President Nixon to China (“Better off in conversation than conflict”), and the reciprocal visit of the Chinese to the U.S.