A year of excellence on the part of the McMaster table tennis club was recognized on Monday (June 29), when Canadian Interuniversity Sport announced that two Mac athletes, Max Xia and Dun Han Li, will represent Canada in the sport at the Summer Universiade in Gwangju, South Korea.
Canada’s table tennis delegation of five players reflects McMaster’s recent dominance in the sport in the Great Lakes region. The team’s success was such that even the United States Olympic Committee took notice, writing about the McMaster Students Union club in January. They lost just one match as a team at the National Collegiate Table Tennis Association’s Great Lakes regional tournament, beating out more traditional Canadian powers, Toronto and Western, in the process.
Their excellent showing in 2014 led Mac to the TMS College Table Tennis National Championships in Wisconsin, where Dun Li and teammate Klement Yeung advanced to the round of 32 in the men’s singles competition.
Having made the most of their opportunities in North America, the duo of Li and Xia now turn their attention to the global arena, where Canada has yet to see success. The last Universiade appearance for Canadian table tennis athletes yielded only round 16 appearances from two mixed doubles pairs.
This year’s competition runs from July 6 to 13, where McMaster’s representatives will have the opportunity to win Canada’s first-ever medal in the sport.