Jarvis Sports Sussex Satellite Grand Prix Day 2 Report

(by Rory Scott-Referee)

Filip Flying High:

With the banded events completed the day before, it was now time for the main event-the Men’s Open. With £250 cash for the winner and £100 for the runner-up, a quality field of players was assembled. In fact 4 players even flew over from France to take part! In all there were 36 players competing in 9 groups of 4. Top seed Filip Symanski (POL), ranked no. 235 in the world won his group with ease, but 2nd place was keenly contested and Radovan Zivkovic (Mi) beat the slightly higher ranked Ed Slot (Ha) 11-8 in the 5th to go through. Group 2 was won by 2nd seed Matt Ware (Do), with Josh Band (JEY), who took Matt to 5 sets in 2nd. 3rd seed Po Huang Chen (CHN) won group 3, but Csaba Balint (HUN) took 2nd place from Stuart Williams (Ha) in 5 sets. 4th seed Emran Hussein (E) was too strong for the others in group 4 and one of the French contingent, Jeremie Le Lendu took the 2nd spot with ease. Group 5 was won by Sussex no. 1 Ritchie Venner, with former New Zealand international Shane Laugesen in 2nd place. Amila Thilakarathna, who has represented Sri Lanka at junior and U21 level and now lives in Sussex breezed through group 6 and Mohammad Owadally (Mi) was the runner-up. Another of the French players, Adrien Brusson was far too good for his opposition in group 7 and he brushed no. 7 seed Valmiki Sinanan (Ha) aside with scores of 5 or less. Miki went through in 2nd place. Mohamed Imran Dawood Basha (Sy) took group 8 without much ado, but there was a battle for 2nd place, which Zaid Doraid (Mi) won on countback. The final group was taken by Christoph Zickert (GER) at the expense of 9th seed Marcus Giles (Sy).

After the preliminary round and round 1 took place without any major upsets, the quarter finals line-up was as follows: Filip Vs Christoph, Emran Vs Amila, Po Huang Vs Ritchie and Matt Vs Adrien. The top 4 seeds progressed with relative ease through to the semis. The semis brought two well contested matches. In the top half of the draw Filip was tested by an in form Emran and was made to work for his win 12-10, 11-8, 7-11, 11-7. The other semi was even closer with seeds 2 and 3 locked in battle. Matt took first blood 11-9, only to be pegged back by Po Huang again 11-9. The 3rd went the way of the young Chinese man 12-10, followed up with a 4th set win for Ware. The 5th set was won by the lower ranked Chen 11-7 to produce a very international final with Poland Vs China. On the world stage this would be an easy win for China, but not on this occasion. The Polish no. 8 player had a little too much for Chen, winning 11-9, 11-8, 11-4. Thanks go to Geoff Ware for his help with staging the final.

Yolanda Lands Another Title:

Unfortunately due to a withdrawal the Women’s Open only had 3 competitors. First up was the experienced Sue Collier (Ch) Vs youngster Daniella Gray (K). Sue won this in straight sets. Next up was Daniella Vs Yolanda King (Sx). The former Junior National Champion won this in 4 sets. The final match was therefore Yolanda Vs Sue. The higher ranked Yolanda won this after a titanic struggle from 2 sets down to win 11-9 in the 5th. This was the same result as their encounter the day before, but on this occasion Yolanda won the event.

Ware’s The Winner:

The U21s was run as a mixed event, as there were only 2 entrants in the Women’s event. Group 1 was won by top seed Matt Ware, ranked no. 9 in England. 2nd place was a close call and James Meyers (K) overcame Finny Wilson (Sx) in the fifth. 2nd seed Marcus Giles won his 3 matches in group 2 without dropping a set. Again 2nd place was fiercely contested and Frenchman Jean Marc Bessy just saw off the challenge of Alex Forshaw (Sy) with all 5 games being extremely close. In group 3 Zickert won through, but was pushed all the way to 5 sets by young combination bat player, Jamie Trevillion (Do). Trevillion also had a top class win over Ed Slot, but it was not enough to go through the group, as he lost to Mark Collins (Sx) in straight sets, meaning it was a 3-way count back in which Collins came out on top. The final group was won by Women’s singles winner, Yolanda King with Simeon Giles (Sy) in 2nd place.

In the quarter finals Matt saw off the challenge of Jean Marc, Yolanda was too strong for Mark and Zickert brushed aside Simeon. However it was a different story in the match between James and Marcus. Having won the 1st and dominated the 2nd 11-1, Giles found himself in big trouble, as Meyers battled his way back into contention 11-8, 11-7. Furthermore he pushed Marcus all the way to 13-11 in the 5th, before eventually succumbing. In the first semi-final Ware dominated against King to progress to the final. However in the other semi Marcus found himself involved in another 5-setter. Having lost to Christoph in the men’s he was out to make amends and started very well with an 11-2 win. The two exchanged games from then on until Marcus pulled through 11-5 in the 5th. Well Marcus sure got his money’s worth, as in the final with a fantastic performance he managed to take Matt, who is ranked over 200 places higher in the men’s ranking list to a deciding set. Matt’s greater experience told in the end and he won 7-11, 11-5, 11-4, 10-12, 11-6, but a great show of talent by the 13-year-old.

Brusson Brushes aside the Opposition:

In the restricted singles (the event for those aged between 21-39 and not too highly ranked to play in band 1, there were 10 entrants (2 groups of 5 players). In group 1 Adrien Brusson continued his good form from the open event and won all 4 of his matches with consummate ease, including dishing out a walloping to top seed Amila Thilakarathna. Amila won the rest of his matches easily to finish 2nd in the group with Raj Waterman 3rd in the group with 1 win. In group 2, Mohamed Imran Dawood Basha the 2nd seed did win his group, but had a much tougher time of it. He was taken to 5 sets twice, having to come back from 2-0 in sets vs Mohammad Owadally to win 14-12 in the 5th. He also found himself 2-1 down vs Paul Payen (FRA), but had a much easier 5th set this time winning it 11-0! Owadally took 2nd place. In the penultimate round, Brusson was too good for Owadally and won in 3 sets. However in the other semi, Dawood Basha had a tough task to overcome Thilakarathna, as they exchanged sets in a topsy turvy match. Aside from his match vs Ware in the quarters of the open, Adrien had his toughest test vs Mohamed Imran in the final. He lost the 1st set 14-12 and then won 3 tight sets 12-10, 11-8, 11-7 to take the title back to Paris.

Radovan Races to the Title:

The veterans event was a round robin of 5 players. 2nd seed Radovan Zivkovic emerged the winner with 4 wins, but two of these, his matches vs Andrew Calloway (St) and ‘the Octopus’ Paul Beck (K) went the distance. 2nd place went to top seed Hon Kau Choy (Ng), who won his remaining 3 matches in 4 sets. Paul finished in 3rd and Andrew 4th.

Summary of Results:

Men’s Open: Final-Filip Szymanski (POL) beat Po Huang Chen (CHN) 11-9, 11-8, 11-4

Women’s Open (Round Robin):

1) Yolanda King (Sx)

2) Sue Collier (Ch)

3) Daniella Gray (K)

Mixed U21s: Final-Matt Ware (Do) beat Marcus Giles (Sy) 7-11, 11-5, 11-4, 10-12, 11-6

Restricted Singles: Final-Adrien Brusson (FRA) beat Mohamed Imran Dawood Basha (Sy) 12-14, 12-10, 11-8, 11-7

Veterans (Round Robin):

1) Radovan Zivkovic (Mi)

2) Hon Kau Choy (Ng)

3) Paul Beck (K)

4) Andrew Calloway (St)

5) Geoff Ware (Do)