To train budding table tennis talents, Fr Agnel Multipurpose school in Vashi has launched an international table tennis academy, in association with the Korean coaches
The academy — named as Fr Agnel International Table Tennis Academy — was launched on October 4, by Jang Seok-Gu, the Consul-General of the Republic of Korea, in India.
Fr Almeida, managing director of Agnel, said “For more than three decades our school has provided the nation sports champions at the state, national as well as international levels. Our students, teachers, staff, coaches and parents have all contributed selflessly to achieve sporting excellence in swimming, football, hockey and shooting. Now, we have taken a new step in the field of table tennis.”
The academy will be headed by Coach Jong-Gu Gang at the Fr Agnel Sports Centre in Vashi. The academy promises to adopt Korean method of coaching, which is considered responsible for producing many table tennis champions in the world.
In his address to the audience, the Consul-General explained how the Indians and Koreans are similar in build and well-suited for a sport like table tennis.
He went on to play a demonstration match with the academy coach Jong-Gu Gang, on the occasion.
Fr Almeida added, “As part of our continued efforts at discovering and grooming talents at a grass-root level by providing best training, we are proud to be collaborating with Korean coaches who will lead this initiative by adopting Korean training methods.”
“The academy will train aspiring table tennis players of all schools from the age group of 6 and above. We are confident that this collaborative effort will produce international champions in the near future,” he said.
Along with the Consul-General, Fr Saturnino Almeida, managing director of Agnel, Narendra Sopal, joint director, Directorate of Youth Affairs and Sports, Government of Maharashtra, Yatin Tipnis, secretary of Maharashtra Table Tennis Association and Olympian shooter Suma Shirur were also present.