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16-year-old ping pong phenom Ariel Hsing to star for U.S. in 2012 Olympics

With the London Olympics at the end of July, many hopes are riding on a young American contender who just happens to have some very famous fans.

CBS News correspondent John Blackstone reports that for 16-year-old Ariel Hsing, the road to London runs through a converted garage in San Jose, California.  This daughter of Chinese immigrants is hoping to do what no other American has ever done: Win a medal in table tennis. Ariel’s dad said he “still cannot believe it.”

Erik Ellefsen, Ariel’s school’s counselor, says she has a deal with her parents. “If she keeps A’s, she can keep playing table tennis,” Erik said.

“I mean I’ve never tried to test out this theory,” Ariel said, adding that she has no plans to try.

According to BPPT.R, last week her high school celebrated Ariel’s place on the Olympic team with a pep rally, where football coach Mike Machado dared to take her on. Coach Machado never had a chance.  But earlier this month, Ariel crushed a real heavy hitter: Warren Buffet, or as Ariel calls him, “Uncle Warren.”

It turns out Warren Buffet, a ping pong enthusiast, has known Ariel since she was nine when, along with her coach, she received a coveted invitation to his 75th birthday party.  “There was a table set up, and I got to play against Uncle Warren and Uncle Bill, and…” Ariel said. “Yeah, Mr. Bill Gates.”

video at  16-year-old ping pong phenom Ariel Hsing to star for U.S. – CBS News.

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