A resident of Launceston hopes to push themselves to the limit with a 24-hour table tennis sporting challenge for charity.

David Thorpe has set himself the challenge of playing table tennis consistently for 24-hours in aid of Cornwall Air Ambulance.

David said he wanted to take on the challenge and do something a bit different to help out during these difficult times.

He explained: “All charities are struggling at the moment and we often hear the helicopter overhead so it was an obvious choice for me. I hope never to need its assistance, but you do not know what is round the corner for you.

“I have also been collecting with the Air Ambulance bucket in Wadebridge, Bude, Launceston and Tintagel at weekends to top up my JustGiving page and have been amazed by the level of interest shown by the passers by and the tourists. Many people have donated very generously due to having either personally or via a friend or family member, needed emergency assistance. They are all united in their praise for the Air Ambulance team and their kindness in what is always a difficult situation.”

Despite the scale of this challenge, David is still rather new to playing table tennis: “I started playing table tennis at Pipers Pool club about 18 months ago. I had only played the odd bit of table tennis growing up but never been a member of any club.”

However, after meeting local farmer Dave Jones on several dog walks, he discovered the group which Dave runs with his wife at the Methodist church.

Although David is still learning the sport, he is no stranger to a charity challenge, having run eleven marathons for various charities.

To prepare for the event on June 16, David has been practicing his game and using YouTube to brush up on his technique.

“I play twice a week and have a fairly good level of fitness due to walking three very energetic dogs — well one is not quite so energetic but he makes up for it with cuddles. Many hours watching YouTube table tennis lessons and then giving them a go at the club.

“Dave Jones is a very good player and helps me improve each week. It is incredible how technical it can be if you watch the professionals. I go to the Altarnun club on a Thursday and Friday evening and there are several very experienced players there who teach everyone a few tricks or just correct your bad habits.”

Over the 24-hour period, David will be playing against a number of various opponents.

He explained: “I have a list of time slots and several are taken but there is always room for anyone wishing to have a go, so just turn up. We have two tables so if you want to challenge your friends you can.

“If you want to play me then I can assure you it really doesn’t matter what level of player you are. If you are a learner, then we can just try and get a rally of back and forth going and if you have played before then you can see if you fancy taking it up again. If you are league level you will easily beat me, but I will do everything I can to beat you.

“It really is such good fun and if you want it to, it can be quite exhausting charging round trying to get that impossible shot back over the net. Plus of course, there will be tea and cake to enjoy if you just want to watch you kids or partner giving it a try. We have also collected many raffle prizes and will be selling tickets at the event.”

To find out more about the event or to donate, go to: www.justgiving.com/fundraising/David-Thorpe33