Liverpool has three universities but there are no university teams and only a few students play in the Liverpool & District Table Tennis League.
Part of this problem is caused by the fact that the university academic year starts after the local league season starts and not many students have transport to travel to clubs outside the city area.
The University of Liverpool Table Tennis Club and the Liverpool League have been working together to solve this problem and for the first time the University of Liverpool Table Tennis Festival took place on Saturday 23rd February.
The Festival consisted of players from the University and the Liverpool League and was broken down into three bands of Division 1 standard players, Division 2/3 and Division 4/5. After initially playing in groups the top players went into a knockout competition and the remaining players took part in a consolation competition.
The Band 1 final was between Aaron Beech, University TT coach, and Neil Wright from the Liverpool League. Aaron won the final 3-1.
The Band 2 final was between Tony Dixon from the Liverpool League and Louis Cheung-Turner from the Liverpool League. Louis is the current No 1 National ranked Under-11 player. On his route to the final Louis beat some experienced University and League players but he eventually lost the final 2-3 to Tony Dixon with his unusual style of play.
The Band 3 final was won by Steve Daniels from the Liverpool League who beat Hanson from the University 3-0.
The finals from the consolation competition were as follows:
Band 1 Plate: Ming Liu (LDTTL) beat Lisa Rinhoffer (University) 3-1
Band 2 Plate: David Swindells (University) beat Chris Gilsenan (University) 3-2
Band 3 Plate: Owen Green (University) beat Alex Bird (University) 3-2
Overall it was a good event and hopefully it will lead to more University players competing in the Liverpool League and the possibility of the Festival becoming a regular event.
Many thanks to Sam Ball, President of the University TTC, and Vice-President Rahul Kothari who helped to organise the event.