It’s easy to have sports heroes, but while soccer and baseball players are clear choices, there are also plenty of people to cheer on in the sport of table tennis. International star Margaryta Pesotska hails from Ukraine and is a rising star in the sport. With two appearances at the Olympics and a wide range of international tournaments, this young athlete is proving that you can compete at an acclaimed level while juggling a family that includes her husband and young son. If you have caught Pesotska in action and want to learn more about what she has accomplished, keep reading.
Margaryta Pesotska was born on August 9, 1991, in Kyiv, Ukraine. She went to school in Ukraine and graduated from the National Pedagogical Drahomanov University. While little is known about her personal life, Pesotska married Andrii Bratko on June 27, 2015, and has one son with him who was born in 2016.
Interestingly, Pesotska took time off from her career once her son was born. From late 2016 to the fall of 2017, she did not compete in any tournaments. This is a hard choice that many women athletes need to decide upon. Taking time off can hurt their rankings, not to mention make it that much harder to start training again. However, many women regret not taking time off to spend with their children, not to mention the physical and emotional toll that having children has on a person.
While growing up, Pesotska was a highly disciplined child, which naturally helped her become the star athlete she is today. This is especially evident in how she plays table tennis. Long rallies are a signature of Pesotska’s play which shows that she does not fatigue early and instead can focus on wearing her opponents out and defeating them this way.
While Pesotska is almost always smiling in photos, she would prefer to describe herself as responsible and polite. She is incredibly optimistic and as she continues to win and improve her game, that optimism is more of a self-fulfilling prophecy.
It's easy to see Margaryta Pesotska play table tennis and instantly be enthralled in the game. In fact, one of the reasons why table tennis is becoming such a popular sport with youth is that it has relatively few equipment needs. If you are inspired and want to play like her, you can check out our compilation of the best table tennis nets that aren’t too expensive and as long as you have a decent paddle, you can get started.
Another option for youth that want to play table tennis but who are short on practice space is finding the best retractable ping pong nets. These are portable and can be taken with you easily. They even retract so you can fit them inside a backpack.
Margaryta Pesotska has many achievements she can be proud of. Indeed, she has inspired men and women to embark on their own table tennis journey. If you have seen Pesotska play and want to get started, investing in a reliable table that is also easy to assemble, such as the Joola Table Tennis Table is a solid idea.
Margaryta Pesotska has been to the Olympics twice in her career, although she almost attended a third time but had to withdraw due to an injury. Her first appearance was in 2008, which was hosted by China. There, she advanced to the first round in the singles competition. Unfortunately, she lost her subsequent matches.
Pesotska’s next chance to pursue her Olympic career was in 2012 at the London Olympics. This time, she was able to make it all the way to the third round, again in the singles competition.
Unfortunately, while Pesotska was able to qualify for the 2016 Olympics in Brazil, she had to withdraw from the games after suffering an injury.
As for the next summer Olympics, in 2020, (which were postponed to 2021 due to the Coronavirus Pandemic), Pesotska was also able to qualify. However, she was again unable to advance past the second round after an unexpected defeat from Manika Batra from India.
Throughout her career, Margaryta Pesotska has continually impressed fans with her playing style and drive. She has taken all of her achievements and continues to learn from past performances to become better and better.
As Pesotska is a native of Ukraine, many of her tournaments have been focused around Europe. Here are some highlights from the Table Tennis European Championships:
- 2009 - Won the silver medal in singles play
- 2011 - Won the bronze medal in singles play
- 2015 - Won the bronze medal in singles play
- 2018 - Won the silver medal in singles play
In 2015, in the European Games, Pesotska lost in the quarterfinals during a single play. Unfortunately, during a doubles match at the same event, she and her teammate came forth with the bronze medal going to the Czech Republic.
Most recently, Pesotska played in the World Table Tennis tournament in Doha, Qatar, in 2021. There, she did well by outperforming Puerto Rican Adriana Diaz, who was seeded eighth. However, she eventually lost to Xiaona Shan from Germany.
At first glance, Margaryta Pesotska might not be as intimidating as you would think. Not that she isn’t a world-class star, but her playing style is simple and deceptive.
Pesotska has decent topspins but not overly powerful ones. Furthermore, while she is fast on her feet, there are many more agile players that have fancier footwork. This subtleness to her play, however, just means that once Pesotska starts playing, she has the ability to topple her opponents.
Pesotska’s greatest strength is her variability. While some players are consistently aggressive, Pesotska knows how to read her opponent and adapt her style. As a result, she can make a series of soft hits followed by a crushing slap that comes completely unexpected. By keeping her opponents constantly guessing, Pesotska then has the ability to keep the play on her terms and control the match.
Pesotska is able to use the few tools in front of her in a purely brilliant way. Whether she has a simple but effective rubber covering for her paddle, such as the Tibhar Evolution, or just a set of decent ping pong balls, Pesotska attacks with intelligence and awareness.
It would be interesting to see how Margaryta Pesotska does when playing against some of the best ping pong robots that we've reviewed. These machines are meant to mimic the play of others and are ideal if you want to practice but don’t have anyone else to play with.
Her consistent ranking has been a major achievement for Pesotska. Her rankings were in the 200s when she first started playing professionally in 2006 and she has consistently improved herself over the years.
Margaryta Pesotska frequently updates her Instagram page to share updates about her tournaments and gameplay. She does, however, make a point of keeping her personal life private.
One aspect of Pesotska’s life that she is becoming quite vocal about is the conflict between Ukraine and Russia. She has said in many interviews how the bombings and fighting have destroyed important training facilities in Ukraine. As a result, it is harder to train in her home country and she now travels to other training facilities in nearby countries to maintain her level of performance.
In an attempt to help Ukrainian victims of the conflict, especially children, Pesotska is a champion of the organization Orion, which supports young table tennis players by providing them with money and resources to continue to train. Thanks to her efforts and others involved with the organization, many children from Ukraine now have the opportunity to play table tennis, which helps not only their physical well-being but their mental health, as well.
Margaryta Pesotska is still young and has already been to three Olympics. She is currently chasing her dream of winning there and hopes to qualify for the 2024 games in Paris. Along the way, you can see her at international championships where she practices a steady, calculated game of table tennis. While her feet might not be as quick as other players, her intelligence and ability to keep her opponents guessing have allowed her to come out on top in many matches