Image by NEWS.CN

The Table Tennis Social Network

Almost everybody in the World with an Internet connection ends up creating a Facebook account at some point. And it is not different with professional table tennis players.

However, it usually happens that, the more popular a player is, the more he/she hides from the rest of the people, usually having an official page without the chance to contact him/her personally.

Anyway, we can consider ourselves very lucky to be interested in table tennis, as most of the players still use their personal account. Therefore, it is not difficult to find this kind of pictures in Facebook:

In this article, we will provide a list with links to more than 150 Facebook profiles of top players in the table tennis scene along with an analysis of their connections considering several key factors.

The list

Liu Shiwen MA Long
XU Xin DING Ning
ZHU Yuling MIZUTANI Jun
OVTCHAROV Dimitrij (official) ISHIKAWA Kasumi
FENG Tianwei OVTCHAROV Dimitrij (personal)
WONG Chun Ting HAN Ying
ITO Mima JEOUNG Youngsik
SAMSONOV Vladimir (official) HIRANO Miu
FUKUHARA Ai SAMSONOV Vladimir (personal)
BOLL Timo (official) HU Melek
TIE Yana BOLL Timo (personal)
FREITAS Marcos JEON Jihee
DOO Hoi Kem GAUZY Simon
CALDERANO Hugo (official) HAMAMOTO Yui
SATO Hitomi CALDERANO Hugo (personal)
MATSUDAIRA Kenta SUH Hyowon
HAYATA Hina FEGERL Stefan
KARLSSON Kristian ISHIGAKI Yuka
SAMARA Elizabeta STEGER Bastian
MURAMATSU Yuto SHAN Xiaona
LEE Ho Ching APOLONIA Tiago
ARUNA Quadri YU Fu
YANG Haeun LEBESSON Emmanuel
KARLSSON Mattias LI Jie
ZHOU Yihan MONTEIRO Joao
GIONIS Panagiotis POTA Georgina
MORIZONO Misaki SHIBAEV Alexander
GERELL Par EKHOLM Matilda
LI Qian GROTH Jonathan
OSHIMA Yuya KATO Miyu
MORI Sakura FILUS Ruwen
DYJAS Jakub CHOI Hyojoo
WINTER Sabine DRINKHALL Paul
DUDA Benedikt SHEN Yanfei
LI Fen TOKIC Bojan
GARDOS Robert MIKHAILOVA Polina
YANG Xiaoxin PITCHFORD Liam
ASSAR Omar MONTEIRO DODEAN Daniela
PAVLOVICH Viktoria YOSHIDA Kaii
HO Kwan Kit POLCANOVA Sofia
SILBEREISEN Kristin WANG Yang
MORIZONO Masataka SHIBATA Saki
SOO Wai Yam Minnie CRISAN Adrian
MATTENET Adrien VACENOVSKA Iveta
SZOCS Bernadette WALTHER Ricardo
WANG Zengyi EERLAND Britt
MAEDA Miyu ACHANTA Sharath Kamal
MENGEL Steffen NG Wing Nam
MATSUZAWA Marina LI Ahmet
FRANZISKA Patrick KATO Kyoka
DOLGIKH Maria OUAICHE Stephane
IONESCU Ovidiu ZHANG Mo
SUN Chen HARIMOTO Tomokazu
OLAH Benedek DIACONU Adina
NOSKOVA Yana YOSHIDA Masaki
PROKOPCOV Dmitrij LOVAS Petra
MADARASZ Dora GERALDO Joao
VLASOV Grigory BALAZOVA Barbora
PARTYKA Natalia JIANG Tianyi
FLORE Tristan LEE I-Chen
ZHANG Lily PATTANTYUS Adam
ALAMIYAN Noshad PROKHOROVA Yulia
DIAZ Adriana GHOSH Soumyajit
CHO Seungmin MORIZONO Mizuki
MATELOVA Hana ROBINOT Quentin
KALLBERG Anton SO Eka
BATRA Manika NUYTINCK Cedric
BROSSIER Benjamin GAPONOVA Ganna
XIAO Maria TSUBOI Gustavo
UEDA Jin DVORAK Galia
ZHENG Jiaqi JANCARIK Lubomir
KARAKASEVIC Aleksandar SOLJA Amelie
CIOBANU Irina MATSUMOTO Cazuo
OIKAWA Mizuki MITTELHAM Nina
PASKAUSKIENE Ruta SZOCS Hunor
HABESOHN Daniel TASHIRO Saki
MESHREF Dina ROBLES Alvaro
SKACHKOV Kirill ODOROVA Eva
IACOB Camelia TORIOLA Segun
PERSSON Jon MORET Rachel
GUI Lin GERASIMENKO Kirill
ZHMUDENKO Yaroslav DE NUTTE Sarah
RAMIREZ Sara BOBOCICA Mihai
HACHARD Antoine MA Wenting
YU Yang PUCAR Tomislav
DESAI Harmeet CECHOVA Dana
KHETKHUAN Tamolwan YEFIMOV Viktor
GNANASEKARAN Sathiyan SABITOVA Valentina
TIAN Yuan LEE Eunhye
WU Yue

The connections

Who are the players friends with? The next graph shows all the Facebook friendship connections between the players in the previously provided list:

graph

Yes, we all agree that it is impossible to get any insight from this graph. Too many connections. Precisely, 2451 connections between 164 players. These numbers result in a mean value of 30 friendship connections from each player.

Let’s synthesize all this information to get some eye-opening revelations.

The most social player

If we consider the friends that each player has whose name is present in the previous list, we can have an idea about their social skills. This is the top 3:

#1 Elizabeta Samara [ROU] (111 connections)

#2 Britt Eerland [NED] (105 connections)

#3 Maria Xiao [ESP] (100 connections)

The most international player

Counting the amount of friends with a different nationality each player has, we  have:

#1 Lily Zhang [USA] and Maria Xiao [ESP] (36 countries)

#2 Elizabeta Samara [ROU] (35 countries)

#3 Simon Gauzy [FRA] and Britt Eerland [NED] (34 countries)

About gender

Do men tend to connect more to women? What about women connecting to men? These are the players with a highest percentage of friends from the other gender:

#1 Tianyi Jiang [HKG] (72.7 %) and Adina Diaconu [ROU] (54 %)

#2 Cho Seungmin [KOR] (70 %) and Nina Mittelham [GER] (50 %)

#3 Jeoung Youngsik [KOR] (69 %) and Britt Eerland [NED] (46.7 %)

Elite groups

Is it true that top players connect better with their similars? Are there VIP groups in the circuit? The average difference of World Ranking between each player and their friends is 37 positions. These are the players who have the lowest World Ranking position average in their friends list:

#1 Lee Eunhye [KOR] (24.4 WR friends average)

#2 Zhu Yuling [CHN] (36.5 WR friends average)

#3 Tianyi Jiang [HKG] (38 WR friends average)

National teams linkage

Which is the national team with the most connected group of players? Let’s see the most connected national teams with 5 players or more in the list:

#1 Romania (9 players, 100% of connection rate)

graph_rou

#2 Czech Republic (5 players, 90% connection rate)

graph_cze

#3 Korea Republic and Sweden (7 players, 85.7 % connection rate)

graph_kor_swe

About privacy

Social networks usually bring privacy issues to their users. It is not strange to see private pictures published publicly without the owners desire. But it is not only that.

In order to write this article, we have collected information from more than 150 players, who had, in most of the cases, a very relaxed privacy configuration. This allowed us, for example, to check their friends list. Even when they had it closed for non-friends, you could see their name in others profile, which ended up providing us the information we wanted to obtain.

Let’s conclude this article with a gallery showing some examples of sensitive data gathered from the best players of the circuit:

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