“What is Said, is only a fraction of what is actually done!” Eli Baraty

Eli Baraty: High-Performance International Table Tennis Coach

It all began with a film called Forrest Gump, back in 1996, I had decided there and then that Table Tennis would play a huge part in my life.

I started the journey at a small table tennis club located in Hendon (north-west London). The club coach and manager was a middle-aged gentleman called Harold Ismaan. He coached me the basic strokes; rules of the game alongside backhand and forehand and introduced me to local league.

From the small club that had 4 butterfly tables, I progressed to another club called London Progress, at the time England’s leading table tennis club. There I quickly developed my game by watching many of England’s best players and top coaches (at the time). I decided to continue growing as a player and felt I needed more, this led me to one of Europe’s best tennis de table club in (France).

Table Tennis Player Ambition

As a player, I soon realised my table tennis dream (World Champion) was far-fetched and after a year in France, I came back to England. I began coaching at King’s College Wimbledon which led to a head coach position at Barnet Table Tennis Centre. A few years later I was Coaching the England Youth Squad, and then I scouted to lead and become Head coach at Harefield Table Tennis Academy.

Spreading table tennis knowledge and experience

After 16 years of coaching alongside many coaching experiences, I decided to become a Freelance Table Tennis Coach.

This Allows me to share my knowledge and experience with anyone and everyone, alongside Table Tennis clubs and Table Tennis training camps all over England and abroad.

About my experiences at Barnet TTC, Table Tennis England and Harefield Table Tennis Academy?
Barnet TTC

Aged 22, I was extremely ambitious as a coach, similar to my playing career I wanted to be the best. My thoughts shifted from, if I can’t be a world class player then I will produce world-class players. I wanted to give players the opportunity of becoming elite and provide the best coaching possible. I worked as hard as could developing many of England’s best cadets and Juniors. Players included: Tin Tin Ho, Ping Ho, Connor Neenan, Reece Tan, Guy Ben-Aroya, Mark and Mathew Mulley, Imran Hussain and Zak Zilesnick (AKA Zak Abel), to name but a few.

Coaching for Table Tennis England

At 23, I was asked to coach the England youth squad which was based at Lilleshall (National Sports Complex). I was privileged to assist and run the coaching session which was held once or twice a month for 2 years. Players in that period included: Liam Pitchford, Gavin Evans, David McBeath, Matt Ware, Chris Doran, Danny Lowe Sean Cullen, Sam Walker, Tin Tin, and many more amazingly talented players.

Harefield Academy

It was a table tennis programme that runs alongside your education (aged 11-18) based in a state school called (THA). The System allowed students to train before school, during school – PE lessons or any free periods, in a small group or 121 sessions and after school group training sessions. I expanded the venture by providing a TT coach for the local primary schools in and around Harefield which was used as a feeder and developmental stage prior to joining Harefield. This meant players who chose to join Harefield school would have the basic skills which would be nurtured once they joined Harefield’s table tennis programme from the age of 11 to 18.

Sixth Form Table Tennis Academy

They could choose to stay at the school for Sixth From which was again a bespoke table tennis programme was developed (further detail click here), followed by our link at Brunel University (Local to Harefield). Player’s had the option to either continue playing at Harefield and Brunel while attending University or could follow other personal options which was always supported. Furthermore, my vision was to open a full-time table tennis facility on site (Harefield) and open a purpose-built table tennis centre.  The club centre would have catered for all levels of play and gather the local community to not only play but also be spectators of our elite players. Lastly, the centre would have hosted national and international competitions plus camps using the onsite boarding facility.

What I Do Today

I am a free-lance table tennis coach and mentor. Table Tennis coaching includes; private table tennis, Group table tennis coaching, national and international table tennis camps, seminars and training days.

The ultimate vision is having my own full-time table tennis centre.

Videos Produced & Featuring both myself and Students

Players and Coaches I have Produced, Developed and worked with:

Zak Zilesnick: (AKA Zak Abel): I started cohing Zak from Day 1 and he is possibly the most all-around talented/gifted player, I’ve worked with to date! At 9 Zak could barely hold the bat and became no.1 in England when he was 11 years old. This was after he won both U12 and U13 National singles titles. Zak won many national titles and played for England many times and he maintained the no.1 spot for 3 years up until he decided to change careers and become a singer.

Reece Tan: Joined Barnet TTC when he was 11 and went on to become England no.2 cadet beating many top juniors. Aged 16 he decided to stop playing and was only given one opportunity to have represented England.

Connor Neenan: Joined Barnet TTC aged and became National Champion Under 10’s.

Guy Ben-Aroya: After being told, who would never be any good, via an England player and coach. Guy, proved that hard work and dedication alongside discipline has no limit regardless of what others believe.

Eden Fung: Developed his game into England no.7 U13’s and a top ten cadet before focusing his skills on education.

Ping Ho: Before his sister became a superstar, Ping was top 3 in England and representing England in U13 and cadet level.

Imran Hussain: Reached top 12 in England as a junior and a top 20 England senior player. He enjoyed many years of playing Senior British League, at a Premier division club.

Chris Doran: Worked with me at Harefield Academy for a year working on becoming a future table tennis coach and rejuvenating his table tennis career. Chris was a junior and senior England international player with many top performances nationally and internationally.

Darius Knight: Worked and coach alongside our personal coach Gideon, Darius was no,2 in Europe as a cadet and also reached no.2 on the English senior ranking.

Filip Szymanski:

Polish senior international, with many world-class performances and titles. Filip has had a wonderful playing career of which I was privileged to work and coach him for over 10 years.

Israel Awolaja: Joined Harefield academy as a top 50 England junior, after a solid year he moved up to no.6.

Tyrone Wells: England no.3 cadet developed as a player via Harefield Table Tennis Academy.

Mitchell Jones: Developed at Harefield where he became a 4* Junior singles winner and a schools boy England International.

Danny Lewis: reached a top 12 England ranking and helped many players develop their games.

Gaurav Aravind: Within 4 years of playing Gaurav reached no.6 as an England junior and finished in 5th place at the National Junior Cup.

Nicholas Li: Winner of the English School team championships U19’s and today a full-time professional table tennis coach. Nicholas was awarded young coach of the year in 2016.

Adam Reed: There was a time when Adam was ranked aroubd 400 as a junior but dreamed of becoming a top player. with genuine hard work and dedication, Adam leapt up the rankings to a top 20 England junior and an English school International.

Sarah Menghistab: A dedicated young lady whos grit and determination saw her reach no.6 England junior and a top 3 National cup finish,

Zahna Hall: One of the most unique players, (left handed, defence on the backhand side and attack on the forehand). Zahna represented England and was a top 3 England Junior. She had beaten every player and had reached 8 consecutive 4* junior finals. Zahna finished 3rd at the junior national championships and was feared by every player she faced.

Worked and working with:

Tom Jarvis: When he was 12, I noticed his special attribute (Grit), I asked him to join my JBL team and since working with Tom from the side I saw him become no.1 for his age and grow to a world-class player.

Sam Maybe: I first met Sam when I was coaching the England youth squad, I felt obliged to help him develop his game and again he joined my JBL team plus attended many of my training camps. Sam was no.2 for his age for many years and continues to play today, even though he has suffered many health issues over the years.

Tin Tin Ho: For a year or more Tin Tin attended my training sessions at Barnet Table Tennis Centre, her talent was clear to see, hitting more than 100 FH drives aged 7 and today is England’s no.1 player.

Ding Yi: Former World no.7 and Veterans over 40’s World Champion, coached at many of my camps in England. I still consider Ding Yi a very good friend while he focuses less on coaching and more on his (table tennis company) Dingo

Achievements and Services:

Table Tennis Exhibitions:

You can hire me and my team to host a ping-pong party or put on a table tennis exhibition at Bar Mitzvahs, Corporate Events, Coaching Seminars and Parties.

Past Events:

  • TT exhibition at ‘Bounce’ for the screening of “About Time” in the presence of Director: Richard Curtis and Star Bill Nighy.
  • Corporate Parties: At Gilgamesh (Camden Town) a Charity event including boy band JLS and Former World Champion Frank Bruno,
  • Demonstration for T3 Ping Pong which was on BBC 1 News
  • World Record attempt at Pongathon (Shoreditch)
  • Table Tennis Birthday parties (Zak’s 14th birthday party: Table Tennis exhibition, fun and games
  • Team Building at the Grove Hotel (Watford): With Sally Gunnel
  • Exhibitions and shows for Schools/Colleges/Universities, including Kings College (Wimbledon), Hendon School, The Harefield Academy, Middlesex University,
  • Party entertainment, includes a TT exhibition that will blow your mind with the trickery and skill
    Continous TableTennis Updates: Professional table tennis advice and more by following my social media platforms.
Table Tennis Coaching:
  • Over 18 years of coaching experience, beginners through to international and professional players.
  • International events including Safir’s International (Sweden), English Open, Swiss Open, European Team Cup (Spain), Maccabiah Games, GB Team (Israel, America, Italy, Austria, Belgium, Spain), World Ping Pong Championships (Chris Doran Bronze medal) featured on Sky Sports, World School Games (Sardinia)
  • Player and coach at, Senior British League Premiership Division (as B-Batt National Team Champions) as eBaTT National Junior League Champions
  • Represented B-Batt at the European Team cup Championships in Spain, as a coach and player
  • Worked with and Coached, Many National champions, categories include: Singles, Doubles and Team Champions
  • Coached over 20 players into the top 10 England ranking list.
  • Harefield Table Tennis Academy, from nothing into an 8x English School’s National Team champions and record-breaking 6th position at the World School Games 2012.

UK Coach Eli Baraty leads hugely successful table tennis camp at HiTT Academy Malta by John Bonello added on 26 April 2017.

Four days of intensive table tennis training have come successfully to an end last Saturday. Eli Baraty, our guest coach from the UK, led the 32 players taking part in HiTT Academy’s Easter camp through a very well balanced training program where all participants had the chance to work on their physical, technical and mental abilities.

It was great to see the dedication and passion invested by all involved and by the end of the camp improvement was clearly visible for each player.

Group B

The training camp, which was held at St Alberts College, started on Wednesday and went on till Saturday afternoon, with sessions spread out throughout the day to include three groups of players with different levels of ability. A contingent of British players joined us from Eli’s Academy which is based in Harefield. This gave our students a fantastic opportunity to train with top-level players styles and techniques.

Motivational Talk

On Thursday, Eli gave a motivational talk to all the players attending the camp. The attendance at the talk was also open to all members of the club and has been published on HITT’s YouTube channel.
After returning home, Eli posted some truly gratifying words on his Facebook page: “What an incredible week coaching at the HiTT Academy Malta  Thank you must go to the whole coaching team Katia, Uri and Mario.

Working with the players at HiTT was an absolute pleasure but this credit must go to Mario Genovese for me an ambassador for Table Tennis. Amazing coach, lots of knowledge and what an incredible amount of passion charisma plus work ethic he has.

I’ve worked with some of the best and Mario is 100% up there with them.”
While thanking him for his professionalism and brilliant coaching, we look forward to having Eli and his players back at HiTT Academy soon.
During the camp, Eli kindly accepted to be interviewed and we will publish the filmed interview on our YouTube channel soon.

A Good Table Tennis Coach Must Possess:

  • Technical skills,
  • Understander the game and self-enable to adapt as the game evolves
  • Feed high-quality multi-ball
  • Be able to spar, as a knocking partner
  • Spot weaknesses quickly
  • Good understanding of ball placement
  • Understanding of spin
  • Physical and Psychological knowledge
  • The Coach needs to be caring and sympathetic but tough and hard in certain situations (adaptable)
  • Serve and receive knowledge
  • Have a full range of table tennis drills and  exercises
  • An knowledge of nutritional and Physical needs of a top athlete
  • Be adaptive but more importantly, willing to adapt!
Further requirements:
  • People management skills
  • Administrative skills
  • Good communication skills: dealing with players, parents, managers, sponsors, clubs and external forces etc.
  • Provide good facilities
  • Access to good sparring partners and clubs

As a player looking for a coach, you should consider the above and once found you must apply yourself by; working hard, focusing and listening to the coach.

The reason, I coach Table Tennis

When I played, all I wanted to do was beat the player in front of me. Today I am a coach wanting to empower and provide the best opportunities for my player’s wishing to become the best they can be.

I am continuously developed my skill’s, focusing on being a holistic table tennis coach and provide the best for my players. I have huge ambitions and I’m constantly building towards my vision. The goal is to have an institute that provides a table tennis pathway for all ages and levels which caters for everyone.

My vision began when I created and developed The Harefield Table Tennis  Academy. I created a system which catered for players aged 11-18 of which I was hoping to expand by hiring a full-time table tennis coach for the surrounding areas. Any players from the surrounding junior schools would have been guided towards joining Harefield.

They would have been given a bespoke education and table tennis training programme. Furthermore, the pathway would have been increased with our (Brunel University) link and our current table tennis club (eBaTT).  The full vision was to grow and expand into a full-time table tennis centre.

I believe England can be Europe’s leading table tennis nation with a formulated structure alongside dedicated table tennis centres.

My Vision:

I want to create a table tennis centre, with an infrastructure catering to every player’s needs and this would include: a full-time table tennis coach developing table tennis in the local primary schools and clubs. Feeding into my table tennis Academy (eBaTT). Links with the local university’s and companies developing table tennis as a sport.  A system that nurtures and caters for all players. Whether you’re a hobby to professional, a system that will be a showcase for the future of English table tennis. I wrote an article about my vision click here to read