Happy World Table Tennis Day! 国际乒乓球日快乐 (Guójì Pīngpāngqiú Rì Kuàilè)！
Did you know that World Table Tennis Day is celebrated annually on 6th April since 2015, which also marks the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace?
Did you know that table tennis, or 乒乓球 (pīngpāngqiú) in Chinese, is considered the national game in China? And did you know that Chinese has become sort of a common language (unofficially) that many top players of the world are using it, especially at international games? Did you know why table tennis play shouted ‘cho’ at their match?
Actually ‘cho’ is not the Chinese spelling of the pronunciation, instead, it should be ‘ 球 (qiú)‘ which means ball. In its more complete sense it should be ‘好球 (hǎo qiú)’ – lit. good ball (good point, well played) – in Chinese, a typical way of cheering for themselves when scoring. 好 (hǎo) tends to give a weak sound in the syllable and it is often omitted in competitions. So, shouting ‘球 (qiú)’ or ‘cho’ has become a fashion and trend in many international table tennis matches where Chinese players compete.
Then, how to encourage players in a competition, especially when they are in great difficulties, in Chinese? Here are some simple phrases for you to grasp:
- 加油 (jiāyóu) – lit. add oil; come on, go for it
- 别放弃 (bié fàngqì) – Don’t give up!
- 你能行 (nǐ néng xíng) – You can do it!
- 坚持就是胜利 (jiānchí jiù shì shènglì) – Perseverance leads to victory!
Did you also know that at Queen’s we have a QUB Table Tennis Team (multinational) and there used to be a Chinese team of students and staff members? If they played against each other, which team do you hope to win? Learn how to express hope in Chinese now:
- 女王大学乒乓球队 (Nǚwáng Dàxué Pīngpāngqiúduì) – Queen’s University Table Tennis Team
- 中国师生队 (Zhōngguó shīshēngduì) – Chinese Student-Staff Team
- – 你希望哪个球队赢 (nǐ xīwàng nǎ ge qiúduì yíng)？Which team do you hope to win?
- – 我希望…… (wǒ xīwàng…) I hope …
So, which team do you hope to win? Give your answer by using the structure and phrases above and get some practice.
Of course, in many games, we just want to play for fun and to develop friendship. So in this context, we would say ‘friendship first, competition second’ – 友谊第一，比赛第二 (yǒuyì dì yī, bǐsài dì èr).
Finally, we hope that you will like table tennis game and join us for fun at some time.
- 我们喜欢乒乓球 (wǒmen xǐhuan pīngpāngqiú)！
Want to learn more Chinese? Check the Language Centre website for Mandarin Chinese course registration information.
Reminder: Registration will close promptly at 17:00 on Thursday 15 April. Classes are expected to be extremely popular and usually fill up quickly, so early registration is strongly recommended.