Anand Engineer on his way to Ecuador

Courtesy of theOrange County Register

Placentia pingpong champ heading to Ecuador

By AMANDA PORTILLO

PLACENTIA For Anand Engineer, 15, summer doesn’t mean sleeping late and hanging out, it means traveling the world to compete with the U.S. national table tennis team.

The El Dorado High School student won the North American Cadet Boys Singles on July 4 in Grand Rapids, Mich. He competed among 15 other players from the U.S. and Canada to take first place.

“I was down two games to zero and I just started making better shots,” Engineer said.

Engineer fought his way back, winning the championship match three games to two.

“It (the win) means I get to go places and represent the U.S. in different tournaments,” he said.

He will travel to Guayaquil, Ecuador, with the U.S. National Team at the end of August for the Ecuador International Open he plays with three others in the 12 to 15 age group.

Success in Ecuador will likely send Engineer to Austria in October for a two-week training camp, his father Parul Engineer said.

“This is exciting because of all the work we put into his training,” Parul Engineer said.

But, before he travels to South America, Anand Engineer will first go with the U.S. National Team for training at a facility in Zhending, China, in the first week of August.

“The training center is one of the best,” Parul Engineer said. “People from all over the world send their teams for training there.”

The trips to China and Ecuador will be the first time Anand Engineer travels without his parents.

His father said the solo trip will be a learning experience for the family, but he thinks they will be OK.

Contact the writer: aportillo@ocregister.com

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