Fred Perry – The Table Tennis Champion

Fred perry at footasylum

Fred perry at footasylum
Fred Perry may have made his name as a tennis star but it was table tennis the sporting legend first became a success in.

Table tennis it seems is back in vogue. Fred Perry may be best known for being the founder of the designer clothing label, but he initially came to fame for being the UK’s most successful tennis player. But before he hit the tennis courts, Fred Perry was something of a table tennis champ. And according to London department stores, the demand for table tennis sets has soared.

Fred Perry – The Ping Pong Champ

Ping pong is going strong. One newspaper investigating the revival of table tennis states some startling facts about the game – table tennis is one of the most popular participation sports in the world. Fred Perry was clearly onto something as there are now an estimated 400 million players world-wide. The Chinese see the game as part of their identity and life – it’s fair to say ping pong is a national passion in China.

Famous Players from Fred Perry to Ronald Reagan

Table tennis may not be as big in the UK as it is in China, but thanks in part to Fred Perry, it has a strong presence. Many childhoods feature the game, even if it isn’t played into adulthood. The game can be a fun, competitive and great way to unwind that doesn’t demand expensive gear or physical fitness. Apparently Ronald Reagan had a ping pong table set up in the White House. As well as Fred Perry, its been said a wide range of stars were fans of the game including Judy Garland, Humphrey Bogart, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Tiger Woods.
The fact that Fred Perry was such a good table tennis player as well as a tennis player seems to be far from coincidental. It may demand different levels of physicality but the games also require similar visual skill and strategy. As well as Fred Perry there’s a list of professional players on the court who are also kings and queens on the table including Martina Hingis, Roger Federer, Andre Agassi and Maria Sharapova. Fred Perry became the world champion of the game in 1929 before moving on to the Wimbledon titles.

The Celebrity Revival

And the Fred Perry legacy has become something of a trend (not just because of his designer clothes label). Actress Susan Sarandon has taken up the sport – and was profiled in the New York Times for her love of the game. She was quoted as saying: “I started finding out that there was this subculture of Ping-Pong and all these people that you wouldn’t expect are serious about it,” she said. “I just worked with Ed Norton, and he’s so committed that he trained in China while he was shooting a film there.” Other celebrities who have led the revival include Owen Wilson, 50 Cent and Salman Rushdie.

Fred Perry at Footasylum

Find a great range of Fred Perry clothing and footwear from Footasylum. Whether you’re posh or not, you’re bound to find something new for your wardrobe when you shop with us. We also stock clothing and footwear from other leading brands including Adidas, Nike, Lacoste, G-Star and more.