Back in the early 1900s the country became obsessed with the game of ping pong.
But he was also an internationally competitive ping pong player.
Pippa issued a challenge to the London mayor in a column today to play her at ping pong and he has accepted.
1900, as Ping-Pong, trademark for table tennis equipment (Parker Brothers). Both words are imitative of the sound of the ball hitting a hard surface; from ping + pong (attested from 1823). It had a "phenomenal vogue" in U.S. c.1900-1905.
1901, from ping-pong (n.). In the figurative sense from 1952. Related: Ping-ponged; ping-ponging.
[1972+ Medical; fr Ping-Pong, trademark for a manufacturer's table-tennis set and game]