This coming weekend sees a very strong field entering the Colchester & District Table Tennis League Men’s Singles Tournament. With a ‘draw-friendly’ thirty-two entrants there are eight groups, each containing one seed with two qualifying from each for the knockout stages. Steve Joslin, the reigning champion and runner-up two weeks ago in the Chelmsford championships with his tournament prowess must start as favourite despite not being the number one seed. That mantle goes to his H20 Rowhedge A team mate Antony Greenwood whose superb league form makes him a real threat and should progress to the knockout stages despite being in one of the strongest groups, featuring four top flight players. Kevin Gowlett’s (H20 Rowhedge B) consistency earns him the second seeding with the dangerous Ipswich pairing of Andrew Warner and Nigel Hodder both representing Tollgate A, three and four. Throw into the mix Richard Goodhand (Gt Horkesley A), Michael Andrews (H20 Rowhedge A), Gary Young (Tollgate A) and former champions; Greg Green (Tollgate A) and David Moss (H20 Rowhedge B) and Joslin has his work cut out. However, there is a very dangerous unseeded ‘wild-card’ in the form of Tollgate B’s Paul Davison, three times Braintree Champion that could well upset the lot! There is also the mouth-watering prospect of Rowhedge teammate’s and Men’s Doubles champions Antony Greenwood and Michael Andrews meeting each other in the quarter-final, which they are seeded to do as well as old Colchester tournament adversaries Richard Goodhand and Gary Young lining up in the same group!
In the Ladies Singles Gt Horkesley A’s Aimee Sparkes defends her title as number one seed with Tollgate B’s Sue Welham, a record breaking twenty-two time winner is seeded two, hoping to get revenge following her withdrawal from all three finals last year due to injury. With former Colchester and Clacton Ladies Singles winner’s Janet Faiers (Gt Horkesley B) and Annabelle Rodriguez (Walton C) there should be plenty of close competition.
The Men’s Doubles event is the most hotly contested event of all, with current champions Antony Greenwood and Michael Andrews facing stiff competition from at least six pairings that will all believe they are in with a chance. Braintree champion’s Paul Davison and Kevin Gowlett are seeded two and add to that seven time winners John Andrews/David Moss, Richard Goodhand/Mike Wright, Gary Young/Nigel Hodder, Steve Joslin/Alan Burgess and the return of a Warner/Green combination in the shape of Andrew and Greg.
Aimee Sparkes/Mike Wright defend their Mixed Doubles title with three time winners Gary Young/Sue Welham, Richard Goodhand/Janet Faiers and Greg Green/Annabelle Rodriguez all possible winners.
For the Ladies Doubles it’s hard to look beyond the strong Gt Horkesley pairing of Aimee Sparkes and Janet Faiers with Sue Welham and Hazel Hume favourites to meet them in the final.
In the Juniors Mark Smith (Rowhedge C) the holder and James Denyer (Walton B), both from Clacton should contest the final, with Andrew Harvey (Rowhedge D) spearheading the Colchester challenge.
Nigel Hodder is the number one seed in both the Veterans 40+ and 50+ events with Fred Button (H20 Rowhedge C) the top seed in the 60+ event. In The divisional singles Alan Burgess, Roger Warren (St Peters) and Denise Thompson (Gt Horkesley E) are the top seeds for Division’s Two, Three, and Four.
The Tournament starts with the Handicap, Junior and Veteran’s events on Saturday and the Closed Championships and Divisional Singles on Sunday with the Finals and presentations by the Mayor of Colchester at 7.00pm on the Sunday evening at the Rowhedge Village Hall. Spectators and former players are welcome to attend, refreshments are provided!
|Gt Horkesley A||15||10||0||5||48||102|
|H2O Rowhedge A||13||11||0||2||29||101|
|H2O Rowhedge B||12||10||1||1||31||89|
|H2O Rowhedge C||15||4||0||11||105||45|
|Gt Horkesley C||13||12||0||1||33||97|
|Gt Horkesley B||14||5||4||5||71||69|
|H2O Rowhedge D||15||5||2||8||84||65|
|H2O Rowhedge E||14||4||3||7||78||62|
|St Peters A||17||14||2||1||51||119|
|H2O Rowhedge F||17||9||2||6||70||100|
|Gt Horkesley D||16||7||3||6||72||88|
|University of Essex||17||5||2||10||102||68|
|H2O Rowhedge G||16||5||1||10||102||58|
|H2O Rowhedge H||15||13||2||0||37||113|
|Gt Horkesley E||15||9||2||4||64||86|
|H2O Rowhedge I||16||2||3||11||112||48|
|Gt Horkesley F||15||1||1||13||111||39|
By Martyn Green