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Explained: The science behind TT racquets with pimples

Four more names were added to India’s Olympic roster, table tennis players Achanta Sharath Kamal, Gnanasekaran Sathiyan, Manika Batra and Sutirtha Mukherjee. A mixed doubles team, Batra and Kamal, has also qualified in addition to the individual spots. One common strategy of the women paddlers is the use of pimpled rubbers on one side of their bats or racquets. Batra’s in particular is the long pimpled, or long pips, rubber – a defensive selection that is a rare choice among the game’s elite today. To her credit, the Khel Ratna has learnt how to make that defensive rubber (which she uses on her backhand side) come alive in matches, helping her lead the women’s team to its first-ever gold medal at the Commonwealth Games in 2018. The long pimples aren’t completely obsolete from the game, but it is now mostly a remnant of a time when craftiness was popular and rewarding.........Read more

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