If you can’t play Table Tennis, are you even a startup?

By Nick Krekis

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Well folks, it’s happened. The Inaugural MitchelLake Table Tennis Doubles Championship™ launched just over one week ago, and what a Championship it was!

MitchelLake invited startups from all over Melbourne (well, St. Kilda Rd) to compete in this high-stakes event aimed at bringing together our awesome ecosystem. A Friday arvo (afternoon for my non-Australian readers) was named, beers were put on ice, and a fierce (albeit healthy) competition was the name of the game. What a better way to round out the work week than a game that is synonymous with working in a startup!

Sidenote

If you’re having trouble convincing your Founder or Manager to invest in a Table Tennis table, I’d recommend nonchalantly forwarding them this link.

The Playoffs

We ping’d off the Championship with eight doubles teams going head-to-head to qualify for the semi-final rounds. Tipple made a gallant effort, but unfortunately were knocked out in the first stages, as were the MitchelLake B team (aptly nicknamed Gangs of New York to represent the Irish & American players joining forces. We’re a diverse and creative bunch here at MLG).

Things really started to heat up as Influx and Zendesk fought it out for their spot in the final; Zendesk managed to take a 2-0 set win but not before a last-ditch, heroic attempt by the losing team, who we’ll rename Outflux (boom!).

The Semis

The semi-final was intense. The 2015 winners of the Brews ‘n’ Bats competition, Plattar were up against EthNic, (Ethan and myself - a duo from Old Blighty and representing MitchelLake). One half of EthNic also carries the title of Base Hostel Table Tennis Champion Auckland 2009 winner (though I’m not sure if that counts for much…). With a grueling match that consisted of three full sets, a ball square to the face of yours truly and no more than a four-point lead at any time; EthNic limped over the line to qualify for the Finals.

The Championship

After a much-needed water break (there’s water in beer, right?), the first Championship final hit off between Zendesk and MitchelLake (EthNic). The battle lasted an exhausting fifteen minutes with the table taking the brunt of the attack by being splattered with sweat and determination by both teams. But after two sets, we had our first Championship winner of 2017...EthNic.

Some say the results were rigged with the home team walking home victorious, while others say they just had more time on their hands to practice instead of work. But either way, you’ll never know unless you see it for yourself…

We Want You

We’re currently talking to startups who want to host the next Championship at their place as we look to cycle the event around the Melbourne community. Get in touch ([email protected]) if you’d be interested in getting a team together for the next one or if you fancy your luck at an exhibition match outside of the sanctioned tournament with the current trophy holders!