Identity

Date of birth: 03/03/2000
Right-handed

Awards

2019

Senior French champion class 8
21st world in class 8 and 3rd world in -23 class 8
European Championships: 1/8 final in singles class 8 and 1/4 in team class 9
Winner of the Egypt Open in Singles and Teams

2018

French Champion (-21 years old)

2014

French Champion (-21 years old)

2013

French Champion (-21 years old)

The “Cornilleau Team” Interview

How did you get into table tennis?

I discovered table tennis at a friend’s house when I was ten – he had a table in his garden. I enjoyed it, so I joined my local club in Orchies, in the north of France. I was into lots of other sports too, but it felt really good playing table tennis, it’s a sport that seemed compatible with my disability.

Tell us how you caught the table tennis bug.

In Orchies I used to train once a week, but I soon started playing against adults and practicing more and more often. When I was 13, I joined the Regional 4 team, And the same year, I won the French Youth Championships. We moved to Roanne, in the Loire region, when I was 14. I kept working on my game and progressing, and I ended up being selected for the French national team just before I turned 18.

As well as being a top table tennis player, you’re also a student with a demanding workload. How do you manage to combine the two commitments?

I’m currently in my third year of an engineering degree at Polytech Tours. I find time to train in Joué-Lès-Tours or at 4S Tours and play my matches for Roanne. The key is to be really well organized, because there’s quite a lot of travel involved – Roanne is a four-hour train journey from Tours, for example – but that doesn’t stop me. It was simpler before, when I first started university. I actually managed to adapt my course and do it in three years instead of two, so I could carry on playing top-level table tennis.

What type of player are you?

I’d say I’m quite a defensive player. It’s important for me to understand my opponent’s game, which then gives me the power to turn it around.

A favorite shot?

I like playing a pivot forehand and getting a lot of strength into my shot.

What’s your best table tennis memory?

Last year (2019) I competed in my first European Championships for adults, my first major international competition. I played well, I got to the last 16 in the men’s singles and the quarter finals as a team. It was a great experience, especially the doubles matches with Lucas Didier. We’ve known each other for a few years, and it was really good to share that experience together.

You got your dad hooked on table tennis too – tell us about that.

My dad used to take me to table tennis practice when I was younger. He did so many trips there and back, and spent so much time waiting for me, that in the end he decided to sign up and play during my training sessions. Little by little he really got into the game, and now he’s totally hooked. He’s now president of the Roanne Loire Nord club at Pro B level. 

What are the benefits of table tennis for you on a personal level?

The main thing is the way it helps me deal with stress. I think I’m an innately rigorous person, but table tennis has definitely helped me handle my emotions.

What job are you aiming for after you graduate?

I think I’ll make a career in urban planning, a specialized branch of engineering.