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Tabling a diplomatic replay

By Liu Yinmeng in Los Angeles | China Daily | Updated: 2019-08-20 09:14
Members of China's national table tennis team are training with their US counterparts in a three-week camp at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. XINHUA

Joint China-US training sessions in Los Angeles reminiscent of historic 1971 exhibition

The clacking of ping-pong balls filtered through the cheers at the University of California's John Wooden Center over the weekend.

Fifty-eight members of China's national table tennis team, including Olympic champions Ding Ning and Ma Long, are in Los Angeles for a 20-day visit, training with players from Team USA.

At the invitation of the United States Table Tennis Association and the US Olympic Committee, China's national team - the reigning world champions by any standard - arrived in LA on Aug 5 for daily workouts with their American counterparts until Aug 25.

"I think table tennis is kind of what we call our national sport, and the Chinese team has won a lot of honors. It's a glorious team," Zhang Ping, Chinese consul general in Los Angeles, told an audience of players, USATT officials, UCLA representatives, Chinese students and ping-pong enthusiasts.

Table tennis is closely associated with China-US relations. In 1971, nine American players were invited to Beijing for exhibition games against Chinese opposition.

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