Still on the ball: 80-year-old master craftsman serves up table tennis paddles to China’s top players

Source: Published: 2017-7-25 17:36:28

Highlights: In his workshop tucked away in Southwest China’s Sichuan Province, 80-year-old Cao Lixi has handcrafted table tennis paddles for China’s most elite players. The retired man started repairing paddles more than 60 years ago before creating his own. His reputation has since grown, and world champions such as Qiu Yike have sought out Cao’s custom work. In order to pass on his craft, Cao took on an apprentice, Wu Wei, in 2015. Photos: CFP

  • Cao Lixi handcrafts table tennis rackets in Chengdu, Southwest China’s Sichuan Province on June 5, 2017. Photo: CFP

  • Wu Wei, Cao’s apprentice, details a paddle on June 21, 2017. Photo: CFP

  • Pictured is a side view of Cao’s paddle blades. Photo: CFP

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