The United States has N't won an Olympic medal in Table Tennis. China has long dominated the sport, taking virtually every decoration since 1992. That is not likely to change this year in the Summer Olympics in London. But one young American girl is working hard and hoping some day to triumph at the greatest levels.
Reporter Dave DeWitt, of North Carolina Public Radio, has Her narrative.
Ariel Hsing is 16 years old and she already has the Abilities of the best table tennis players - fast hands, perfect equilibrium and powerful lungs.
(SOUNDBITE OF YELLING)
That word she is crying is sa. She says it has no meaning, But shouting it helps her alleviate stress. And she's putting a lot of that on herself recently.
Just like a few weeks ago, I was like oh, my gosh, this is the Most important thing. I must make it. Because when I make it not only will I be able to go to the Olympics, however like it's going help a lot later in life, too - whether it's like college applications or like possibly even job applications.
Ariel credits her parents with easing her thoughts. She got Interested in the sport at the age of seven while watching them play at the local rec centre. Her mom was a former table tennis player in China. And her father, Michael, is a software engineer who emigrated from China.
But among our doctrine is similar to we care about the process Over the outcome.
(SOUNDBITE OF YELLING, CHERRING AND APPLAUSE)
Ariel typically starts out tournaments gradually, and these Olympic trials are not any exception. It's a unique format, with Americans competing against Canadians at a succession of mini-tournaments for four areas from the Olympics. Additionally, it means Ariel will confront her friend and fellow California teenager Erica Wu in the semifinal. It's something she is used to top ping pong table.
I mean, we're friends off the court. But just like when you are Actually there throughout the game, of course you pretend like you are playing to be an enemy, almost. And then you've got to just fight your hardest. But, of course, like when the match ends, then you are friends again.
Ariel defeats Wu and advances to the last. A triumph and she is in the Olympics. Her rival is a girl old enough to be her mother. Chris Xu is the top Canadian qualifier who, before she awakened, won a Chinese national tournament. The match does not begin well for Ariel.
(SOUNDBITE OF AUDIENCE)
Ariel's mom, watching from the bleachers, closes her eyes Before each point begins. Her dad looks like he's in bodily pain. But a few points move her way and Ariel's confidence is back. She guts out a win to tie it up in two games each, and soon she's at match point.
(SOUNDBITE OF CHEERING)
After shaking hands with her competitor, Ariel runs to her Parents, who have burst into tears.
Can not I tell you were planning to do it?
Yeah, I've been dreaming of it. I've been wishing for this. However, when you, like - when I really won, it sort of struck me unexpected. So it's pretty awesome, I figure right now. I've never felt like this before best ping pong tables.
Afterwards, Ariel seems relieved as she cheers her Teammates within their games. Three of them will include her to London. There, the strain is going to be increased only a bit. Ariel is ranked 125th in the World, and contains hardly any chance to medal. But that doesn't mean that she can relax. Next month, she's taking the SATs for college.