Northeast Philadelphia apparently involved in historic table tennis strike of the past

Turns out the Northeast had some hand in the history of U.S. table tennis, according to a recently released online by Tom Boggan for USA Table Tennis.

Here is the portion of NEast note, referencing a work-stoppage by table tennis players in result of money disputes with organizers that was apparently happening in Philadelphia:

The picket line was growing, but the police were very much in evidence. Marvin Stern was really out of line—he threatened people (told one Racquet Club employee he was going to slash her tires), tried to block the entrance door, continued agitating with his union-type strike tactics. Mike Bush was also bullying. In contrast, Ray Guillen, U.S. Closed Champ here, and Dean Galardi, U-17 winner of the $100 prize Dr. Ted Cohen had generously contributed, were exceptionally nice. Also, there was some gratification on seeing clips of the tournament on TV channels 3 and 10. A big plus was the help Herb got from Barry Robbins, Jerry Kates (he did the much admired Program book), Rob Robinson, Don Feld, Johnny Ou and his son Steve, Sue Sargent, George Hellerman, Fred Kistler, and Marv Plevinsky.

It would have been mutually advantageous if the protesting players had given “exhibitions in Northeast Philadelphia before the tournament in return for free entry and a piece of the gate.” Also, radio, TV, and newspaper interviews could have been arranged. So many now realized that their boycott didn’t accomplish what they wanted it to. Many didn’t even understand why they supported it—maybe just to get the PA players off their back. [Source, emphasis added]

No surprise, back in summer 2007, Drexel University hosted some Olympic table tennis qualifying tournaments. Philly does ping pong right.

Photo courtesy of LA Times.

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