In 1904 WANG Daoping 王道平, manager of a stationery shop in Shanghai, bought equipment from Japan for a new indoor game. He demonstrated the game— a kind of tennis— in order to sell the tables, nets, balls, and rackets. This was the beginning of table tennis in China.
Though table tennis is widely associated with Asian nations today, Japanese and Chinese dominance in the sport did not become obvious until the 1950s when they began winning tournaments using the supposedly outdated penhold grip (European players had moved on to the shakehand grip). But the game originated on the other side of the globe. At a house party somewhere in Victorian England —where parlor games were an important part of social life— someone decided to turn the dining room table into a miniature version of the traditional lawn tennis court. The players are said to have used a line of books to serve as the net. They carved a ball from a champagne cork, and cut rackets from empty cigar boxes and later from parchment paper stretched around a frame.