Sixteen-year-old Lewis Sumner has joined the Table Tennis Academy at Grantham College, but still turns out in Oxfordshire colours at weekends. He was one of three Oxford juniors competing in a field of 17 at the Southern Regional Championships at Cippenham on Saturday. The prize for the top four would be a place in the Nationals (top 64 in England) at Harlow at the end of November.

Lewis won all his morning group matches, notching up a particularly fine victory over the higher ranked Oliver Hack (Hants). Simon Price also qualified for the top six by finishing 2nd in his group, but Niall Harris, with two defeats, only came 3rd, which put him in a play-off for positions 7-12, in which he ended up10th.

Lewis achieved further wins over Leo Long (Berks) and Simon, but lost out to both Daniel McTiernan (Berks) and Jimmy Yeung (Hants). However his 3rd place finish carries him through to Harlow.  He will be accompanied by Teisi Tamming (17), who had already gained qualification in Junior Girls. Simon just missed out in 6th place.

The competition continued on Sunday with the Cadets (Under 15) qualifiers. Josh Selby (11) came 13th/18, but both Niall Harris and Ethan Ball progressed into the top group of six. Ethan came 6th and Niall finished in a very creditable 3rd position, thus qualifying for the Nationals for the first time.

Pictured at Cippenham after the Southern Junior Championships are Oxford’s Lewis Sumner (3rd) and Simon Price (6th).