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Olympic sports

Last Updated: Thursday April 03 2008 12:11 GMT

Table tennis

China's Ma Lin in action

One of the fastest moving of the Olympic sports, and dominated by players from Asia.

The sport's rules have been changed a bit recently to try and make it a bit easier to watch for spectators.

It's played as both doubles and singles and is a fascinating sight when players are driven further and further from the table, but still manage to keep the ball in play.

The first player to win three sets wins a match, and they need 11 points to win a set.

Double rules

If scores are tied at 10 each then they keep going until one player has a two-point lead.

In doubles the players must hit the ball in turn.

For example, the server serves to the receiver who returns the ball. The server's team-mate must hit it next, followed by the receiver's team-mate.

If either team breaks the order they lose the point.

There is a strange rule called the "expedite" system that is supposed to speed up the game.

If a set has not finished after 10 minutes the umpire stops the game.

From then on, if a returner hits the ball back 13 times they win a point, if they don't the server wins the point.