by Greg Fox
While on a recent family holiday to the Gold Coast, Paralympic athlete Sam Von Einem took time out to promote table tennis to local youngsters.
Von Einem, from Adelaide, attended the Gold Coast Rec & Sport Disabilities Session and the Junior Training Program at Gold Coast Table Tennis Association and put on display the skills which landed him a silver medal in the Rio Olympic Games in 2016.
With his newly-found high profile in the sport, Von Einem sees the importance of promoting table tennis at the grass-roots level.
“I like meeting people with disabilities to encourage them to participate in sport – and act as a role model to show them that with hard work you can achieve your dreams”, Von Einem said
“I am always happy to meet junior players to help get more children excited about playing table tennis.” Sam Von Einem
Von Einem’s passion for the sport comes as no surprise to Table Tennis Australia High Performance Director Sue Stevenson.
“Sam is the epitome of what an elite athlete should be. He trains extremely hard towards his Paralympic goals but is also always eager to contribute back to his beloved sport of table tennis whenever the opportunity arises”, Stevenson said.
His recent appearance at the Gold Coast Table Tennis Association is a perfect example of this”.
The upcoming National Senior Championships (this month) and Thai Para Open (October) tournaments are Von Einem’s immediate playing focus.
Stevenson adds “surrounded by his team at the South Australian Sports Institute and his local coaches, Sam is working hard in the lead up to next year’s World Para Championships and the 2020 Paralympic Games”.
Highlighting his outstanding athletic versatility, Von Einem also won the 2017 INAS Australia Tennis Open for Athletes with a Disability in Melbourne in January.