SANFORD Table Tennis Club coach Graham Slack is hoping the club’s new Stay Active - Stay Healthy campaign will bring in a new generation of table tennis players.

The Sanford coach acknowledged the game has a problem with an age gap, citing the fact in his home county of Gloucester the top two players are both over 50.

Sanford’s campaign, launching at the Link Centre on Saturday at 10am with a free all-comers taster session, is ultimately aimed at getting more nine to 15-year-olds playing table tennis.

Slack is hoping that with the club demonstratng what it is has to offer for free, young players may be enticed into the game on a more permanent basis.

“The aim is to get more people playing and more youngsters involved, boys and girls,” he said.

“The aim to increased the numbers on Friday evening (at the club’s night), getting people more active and playing table tennis, and ultimately to raise their standard of play.

“My understanding is, much the same as in a lot of the country, not enough youngsters are coming through to replace the older players.

“We need to capture the imagination of those younger players, it is one of the sports that is addictive once people start playing.”

Slack is also keen to continue the campaign by going into schools in a bid to actively recruit for the sport in the area.

“All young players go to school, without tapping into their talent at school, unless their parents are looking for a table tennis club, then they’re lost for the sport,” he added.

“Without going into schools you don’t find out about these players and they don’t find out about the sport.”

“Hopefully we can get a lot of players there on Saturday then more schools might we be willing to introduce us.”