Gold thrill for table-tennis veteran

Winner: Inh Vane Le with his two gold medals from the World Veterans Championships. Picture: Gene Ramirez

Winner: Inh Vane Le with his two gold medals from the World Veterans Championships. Picture: Gene Ramirez

FAIRFIELD Heights resident Inh Van Le lives table tennis.

The 71-year-old has just returned from the World Veterans Table Tennis Championships with 57 countries represented in Auckland where he won two gold medals.

They hold place in his table tennis arena complete with memorabilia from his 65 years in the sport.

"I started playing when I was six in Vietnam and my dad brought a table," Le said.

"My father was a tennis player and bought a table tennis table so we could learn. I have loved playing ever since.

"I set the table tennis area up 10 years ago and I coach players from NSW here."

Le has had a long-term association with table tennis as a player, coach, mentor and administrator.

His recent success came in the men's over 70s singles and doubles categories.

Le partnered Victorian Igor Klaf to win the doubles against a raft of international competitors from Germany, Japan and Italy.

It's not his first multiple gold-medal winning performance.

In 2003, he won four gold medals from the World Masters Games.

At lot has changed on the table tennis scene since Le arrived in Australia in 1993 — namely, the participation rate of juniors.

"Table tennis is not as big in Australia as it is in Vietnam but there are a lot more juniors starting to play," said Le, who coaches after-school table tennis sessions in Bonnyrigg.

"It is a great sport for your health; I'm over 70 and still going strong."

Le will compete at the Australian Veterans Championships in Tasmania in October.

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