Often called the fastest sport in the world, table tennis is hitting our area in a big way with the 2009 New York City Open—the first tournament the group has held in Manhattan. The quality of play is top-notch: More than 250 participants are scheduled, ranging in skill and experience level from former U.S. Men’s Singles Champion Eric Owens to Canadian National Champion and Olympic team member Pradeeban Peter-Paul to beginning players. But they’re all serious “pongers.” Those who scoff at table tennis as a sport, take note: “We are the biggest single participation sport in the planet,” says Ben Nesbit, executive director of the American Youth Table Tennis Organization, “and for good reason. This is a life sport.”

Sat., April 11, 10:30 a.m., 2009

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