In the current season, which officially started on July 1, there are many new faces in the Tisch tennis Bundesliga (TTBL). In a small series, we introduce the newcomers and returnees in more detail. Being one of three new arrivals of TTC Zugbrücke Grenzau, Marcelo Aguirre is the first one.

Marcelo Aguirre

Passionate athelte: Marcelo Aguirre (Photo: ITTF)

After the past season, TTC Zugbrücke Grenzau had to put together a whole new team. The only remaining player of coach and sports director of the Westerwald club Dirk Wagner is Kirill Gerassimenko. And so around the young Kazakh, who is going to play his second season in Brexbachtal, three newcommers form the new squad. Marcelo Aguirre is one of them.

Victor Marcelo Aguirre Benitez, which is the full name of the 25-year-old, was born in Paraguay's capital Asunción. He begann to play table tennis at the age of eight, now sport is his way of life, as Aguirre recently said in a video series of the ITTF (see below). "Table tennis has been part of my life since I was a child. It's a lifestyle for me." In view of his sporting career, this is hardly surprising. Already in 2008, the left-hander represented his home country at the Olympic Games in Beijing and was the youngest table tennis player in the Olympics ever for a long time with 15 years and 211 days of age. Three more participations in the biggest sporting event in the world should follow.

Top 100 within reach

Most recently, Aguirre, who is ranked 102nd in the ITTF world ranking reaching a new career high in July, caught the attention at the Pan America Cup in June as he advanced to the semi-finals. There he was defeated by Ochsenhausen's Hugo Calderano, who later won the tournament. However, major international successes or titles are rare in Aguirre's sporting vita. His enthusiasm and passion for the sport, however, does not detract from this: "I have a family who played table tennis, too, and thanks to them I started in table tennis. And I don't regret it at all, I think it was a very good choice, and I'm very satisfied for that."

His new coach was satisfied, too, when the deal was sealed in March. "Marcelo fits into our requirement profile," said Wagner. Probably also because Aguirre does not only have the Paraguayan citizenship but also the Italian and thus can play alongside Gerassimenko. His heart, however – and this becomes unmistakably clear in the ITTF video – is beating for his home country: "It is a great honor to represent Paraguay and I'm very glad to be part of the history of Paraguay."

Aguirre might make his first appearance in the Tischtennis Bundesliga (TTBL) on August 19, when Grenzau is a guest of newcomer TTC indeland Jülich at 3 pm.

Header photo: ITTF