Hard work has paid off insists Tin-Tin Ho after qualifying for Tokyo Olympics
- Credit: PA
Paddington table tennis Tin-Tin Ho feels like her hard work has paid off as she will be heading off to the Tokyo Olympics.
The 22-year-old, who is world number 93, became the first female GB athlete to qualify for table tennis since Atlanta 1996.
Now she can’t wait to experience the Olympics and has revealed her initial struggles of juggling University alongside her beloved sport.
“I’m definitely really excited to be going,” Tin-Tin Ho said. “I qualified by the ranking so that has taken a very long time to get, so I'm just happy how it’s turned out.
“All the discipline and hard work over the years has somehow paid off. “It’s my first one, so I won’t have much pressure, and I just want to enjoy it.”
Ho is a medical student at the University of Nottingham and had to find a way of juggling her studies while training to compete at the top level.
“I study at Uni as well so it’s quite hard to balance, I train everyday, sometimes twice. I try to have as much of a normal schedule as I can training wise.
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“I struggled a lot in my first year juggling it, but now I have found my routine and plan my time better. My schedule is good and the facilities are all nearby.
“Both sides are really accommodating and understanding.”
The youngster has also had the backing of her family and her dad is the reason she got into the sport.
“I’m lucky enough to have a table in my house as my dad invested but I travelled around London to practice. I used to go to Stanmore, Croydon, Barnet and loads of different places.
“My dad he used to play for Hong Kong internationally and he coached my brother and I. I started when I was five. Since then I've trained a lot and my first international tournament was at eight.
“That was really fun, but when I started winning at around 11 or 12, it just really pushed me on and I wanted to keep going.
“It’s very nice to have qualified as it feels like the whole family has achieved, so that is quite nice.”
Liam Pitchford, 27, has also been selected to represent GB at the Olympics.
“My first national title was quite special, that was after some injuries, and I wasn’t in a good state before that so winning that definitely was really good.
“Winning the mixed doubles silver twice with Liam, who is also going to the Olympics was really special, but there has been quite a few along the way.”