Wong creating a path for Guyanese table tennis players in Europe against all odds

“Winners never quit and quitters never win” is a quote that resounds strongly through Miguel Wong’s mind whenever he is faced with hardships and it has gotten him through tough situations in life and in his first love, table tennis.

Nineteen-year-old Wong, who has been playing table tennis for exactly half of his life is currently in Germany where he is following his dream and paving the way for other Guyanese players who may have similar aspirations.

A pioneer of sorts, Wong has been in Germany since September of 2019 where the first step of his European journey began at the Sachsicher Table Tennis Club in the city of Eilenburg at a high performance training camp.

His first challenge was getting there from Guyana, one which the conservative youngster overcame with the help of his steadfast sponsors Kings Jewelry World, Beacon Cafe and the Titans Table Tennis Club who made his trip possible.

Despite a late start, once Wong got to Germany he made the most of his opportunity where he had the chance to train with world-class players from Egypt, Russia, Columbia, Mexico, Romania, Morocco, India, and Poland at the Sachsicher Club.

Advised by his then coach, Andras Turoczy (Romania), Wong then set out to further improve his skill set by continuing his journey in Germany, this time at the TopSpin Tishtennis Center in the city of Bad Aibling earlier this year.

However, the Covid-19 pandemic struck and Germany was hit hard with over 190,000 confirmed cases and 8000+ deaths to date; but like every other time, Wong has persevered and recounted his experience thus far.

“I live in the training centre with eight other players but we were fortunate enough to be in this position where we could have continued training in quarantine amongst ourselves. Topspin Tishtennis Center has everything a table tennis player needs to improve their game such as
gym equipment, physiotherapists, many coaches, international players and locals alike.”

He also noted, “Now that the lockdown has eased we recently concluded an open training camp with German league and junior national players”.

Quizzed about improvements to his game, Wong revealed; “Since my arrival in Germany my physical and mental condition along with my constant game play has improved rapidly according to my Coach, Thomas Wetzel. He is a former German national player,coach and the owner and head coach of TopSpin Centre”.
At this point of his European stay, Wong has been met by another hurdle, he needs additional funding to continue his dream of reaching the professional level.

“I’ve been getting alot of support from Kings Jewelry World, Beacon Cafe and Titans Table Tennis Club in securing funds but for me to continue my stay in Germany I would need an additional US $5000 for training and equipment.”

On his return from Europe, Wong intends to give back and share his wealth of newly acquired knowledge and skills; “I plan on continuing to coach and spar with younger players to help improve our (Guyana’s) junior level”.

With his journey, Wong has already fostered friendships and expanded his professional network, something he is doing for others wanting to follow in his footsteps; I’m already well established in a position to have junior players attend camps in Europe and play in leagues. To create a path for others to follow was always my main aim”.

“My advice to anyone wanting to emulate my steps is to have realistic goals and work towards them step by step no matter how long it takes. and also to network and build friendships as much as possible with everyone.”

Anyone interested in helping the youngster continue his aspirations can help by depositing any amount in his bank account (Republic Bank: 962352678621) or can contact him on WhatsApp (+592-646-0825) and or by calling +1-592-679-7412.

Published by

Michelangelo Jacobus

Sports Editor and Founder of 'The 592 Dugout'.

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