Eli Baraty & Kamil Hajdrych

71 players participated in the recent Crawley 2 Star Open, held at the magnificent K2 Leisure Centre in Crawley. A no. of players commented on the quality of the venue, with comments such as ‘They should play the National Championships here’. The events held on the day were U13s, Cadets, Juniors & Seniors. Many thanks go to the Organising Committee for the VETTS Southern Masters, held at K2 that weekend for the use of the venue on the Friday night for the 2 Star.

U13s: Omar in Overdrive!

Top seed Omar Khassal of the London Academy, lived up to his seeding by winning the U13s, beating 2nd seed Olamide Wuraola (Dulwich TTC) in the final. There was a bit of controversy in the final, with Olamide going 2-0 up but then when his club mate, who had been coaching him, was required to play on another table, Olamide’s form slipped & he lost the 3rd set fairly easily & then conceded the match. Omar had a good win over combination bat player, James Arnold (Horsham TTC) 3-1 in the semis. James had a good win of his own in beating the higher ranked Anthony Close (Herts) in the group stage. Marcus Bracey (Lancing) also beat Anthony. In group 2 there was a good win for Regan O’ Neil (Kent) over Nathan Knowles (London Academy) & 3rd seed Blair Phillip (Kent) had a nightmare event, losing to both Regan’s brother Mason & to Charlie McNally (London Academy), who reached the semi-final. Marcus Hensher (Mi) had a good win over Holly Holder (Horsham), but then lost to Arnold in the quarters. The U13s Consolation Event was won by Nathan Knowles, who had a great semi final win over the luckless Blair Phillip & went on to defeat Anthony Close in the final.

U15s: Amazing Austen!
4th seed Adam Corell (North Mundham TTC) had mixed fortunes in the U15s event. Having suffered an unexpected loss in the group to Zachary Bull (London Academy), he dug deep & had unexpected wins over 3rd seed Gabriel Achampong (London Academy) & then 2nd seed George Heath (Ashford) in the semi final. On the other side of the draw top seed Charlie Austen (London Academy) beat club mates Musa Sharif-Ali in the quarters & Karim Khassal in the semis. Zach was knocked out 9 in the 5th by Karim. The final went according to ranking with Austen beating Corell. In the consolation event Dominic Carpenter (Godalming) had a very good win over the higher ranked Matt Van Yperen (Horsham) to get to the final where he lost 3 close games to Harry Collins (East Grinstead). Harry had only just got through his semi final clash in the 5th set vs Robin Francis (Dv).

Bradley Tuttle & Mark Scutts

U18s: Tuttle Annihilation!

In the group stage there were a couple of upsets, with George Harris (Crusaders) beating 3rd seed, Daniel Barna (Horsham) by 3 games to 2 & Josh Kashdan (Filton) emerged the winner of group 4 at the expense of 4th seed, Finny Wilson (North Mundham), in a 3-way count-back situation. Mickel Miller (Mi) missed out in the count-back & finished 3rd in the group. However, both seeds made amends for losing in the group stages by dispatching the players, who had earlier caused the upsets. Barna beat Kashdan & Wilson beat Harris in the quarter finals. Top seed Bradley Tuttle (Ellenborough) eased past Adam Reed (Harefield) & then dropped 1 game vs Barna in the semis. 2nd seed Mark Scutts (Hollingbury), had a straight sets win over left-handed Vinal Patel (East Grinstead) in the quarters & won 3-0 vs Wilson in the semis. In the final Mark took the first end, but then Bradley upped his game to take the next 3 ends in impressive style to justify his no. 1 seeding. In the consolation final Leo Assisi (Brighton City) beat Mickel 3-0.

Seniors: A Baraty Battering!
Top seed Eli Baraty (BBATT) was in a class of his own in the Senior event. None of the other competitors managed to take an end off him, as he showed them all why he is ranked 60 in England. His path to the final included victories over Ed Slot (Waterside) & Maciek Nakielski (Mi). Nakielski had only just beaten 4th seed, Simon Dilkes (Kemnal) 11-9 in the 5th in the quarters. Unseeded Kamil Hajdrych (POL), did extremely well to get to the final. In the group stage he beat long pimples expert, 3rd seed Nakielski 3-0. He then beat Geoff Prosser (E) in the quarters & had an absolute marathon match with 2nd seed, Wen Wei Xu in the semi final. This was a great match to watch with Kamil thowing everything he had at penhold blocker Xu, who absorbed everything & sent it back with interest. The rallies were immense & the tension was high. Hajdrych eventually held his nerve to prevail 17-15 in the 5th set to take his well deserved place in the final. Xu & Nakielski were both over 600 points higher than Hajdrych in the rankings, so he will have picked up 150 ranking points for those 2 wins alone. The final however was a one-sided affair with Baraty blasting Hajdrych off the table 6, 4, 7. 5th seed, Graham Carter did not have a good day, finishing 3rd in his group (losing to Prosser & to Paul Waumsley (Kent)) & then going out 8 in the 5th set in the consolation quarters to Alan Taylor (Kent). Alan then beat Mike White (Littlehampton) 10 in the 5th to reach the final of the consolation. He certainly got his money’s worth on the day, as he just lost out to youngster Daniel Barna 8 in the 5th in the final. Special mention must be given to Damian Milton (Kent), who although unexperienced at this level of play, had 2 great wins over team-mate Andy Larner (Kent) & Thomas ‘Woody’ Woodward.

Main Events:
U13s: Omar Khassal (Mi) beat Olamide Wuraola (Sy) 1-11, 6-11, 11-2, 11-0, 11-0
U15s: Charlie Austen (Mi) beat Adam Corell (Sx) 11-5, 11-7, 11-7
U18s: Bradley Tuttle (He) beat Mark Scutts (Sx) 8-11, 11-7, 11-8, 11-6
Seniors: Eli Baraty (Mi) beat Kamil Hajdrych (POL) 11-6, 11-4, 11-7

Consolation Events:
U13s: Nathan Knowles (Mi) beat Anthony Close (He) 11-7, 11-6, 11-6
U15s: Harry Collins (Sx) beat Dominic Carpenter (Sy) 12-10, 12-10, 11-9
U18s: Leo Assisi (Sx) beat Mickel Miller (Mi) 11-5, 11-8, 11-6
Seniors: Daniel Barna (Sx) beat Alan Taylor (K) 7-11, 12-10, 9-11, 11-8, 11-8

Next ranking event to be run by Rory Scott is the Sussex Senior Grand Prix in the excellent Triangle Leisure Centre venue in Burgess Hill. The form is on the ETTA website & the closing date is 20th May.

By Rory Scott