What a start to 2011 for Halton TT Club Member Jack Hunter-Spivey. Aged only 15 he has just earned his place in the British Table Tennis Disabled World Class Performance Squad 2011. He was presented with his GB tracksuit by Club Chairman Karen Tonge MBE who has plotted Jack’s progress since he joined the club as a result of being inspired by London winning the 2012 Games.

He has received support from Halton Borough Council Sports Development Grants, and since October his school SS Peter & Paul have worked with the Table Tennis Club to devise a personal school time table to facilitate extra one to one sessions with a variety of coaches and players from the area. Stadium Fitness and Sports Development provided a Platinum Card to improve his fitness which has helped Jack to move up a gear out of the Development Squad and into World Performance

He is now attending the English Institute of Sport at Sheffield once a week for extra coaching, Liverpool John Moores University 2 mornings for strength and conditioning as part of his TASS funding The Talented Athlete Scholarship Scheme, or TASS as it is better known, is a Government funded programme to support and fast-track young sporting talent, the potential medal winners of the future. and Jack was nominated by BTTAD. TASS athletes that are awarded a scholarship will receive sporting support and services TASS provides athletes with a tailored package of services compromising of services such as Coaching, Strength and Conditioning, Lifestyle Support, Physiotherapy and access to a medical scheme TASS supports potential medal winners of the future. Sports Aid have also assisted Jack during the last 6 months to attend events Jack has now to work hard to stay in the Squad to fulfil his original dream to play in 2012 Paralympic Games but is now well on the journey. He now has to meet very tough targets set and expected by UK Sport to reach the top 30 in the World by July 2011 and play in foreign events.

It has been quite an exciting few months for Jack winning Young Achiever of the Year in September from Royal Society of Public Health in London, and Halton and then Merseyside Young Sports Personality of the Year; and in December Daily Telegraph Arriva School Sport Matters Excellence in Disability School Sport Awards Highly Commended in second place at Wembley Stadium plus an interview Radio Merseyside with Alan Jackson. Now the hard work starts again meanwhile he is a champion for young people through Aiming High and Halton Speaks Out

Karen Tonge MBE
Halton TT Club