Cracking Result for Clark:

The first 2 star of the season took place on 6th January and was attended by 80 players.

Junior Boys Band 1 was a group of eight players playing a round robin. Shane Clark (Mi) outdid himself to win the event, despite only being the fifth highest ranked player. He beat top seed Karim Khassal (Mi) in a comfortable 3-0 match, as well as coming through a tight encounter at 11-9 in the fifth vs. second seed James Denyer (E). He did lose two matches however, 12-10 in the fifth to third seed Dan Pound (Sx) and 3-0 to an inspired Toby Bartram (K). Toby had a great day too, as he beat two others above him (Oliver Hack (Ha) and Charlie Bates (E)). Clark and Denyer both had 5 wins, so Denyer took second place. Third place went to a three-way count-back, which was won by Bates, who was followed by Khassal and Pound in fourth and fifth places respectively.

Junior Girls was a round robin of seven players. There was a clear win for second seed Evie Foster (K), with a max of six wins. An out of sorts top seed, Hiba Feredj (Mi) only managed two wins on the day, but lost two matches in the fifth game. Second place went to Emma Sheen (Sx), who like Clark in the Boys Band 1, was only the fifth seed. She came out on top in two five-setters. Third and fourth places went to Sussex stars Kate Cheer and Holly Holder respectively, with Cheer scraping through over Holder in the closest match of the day 12-10, 9-11, 9-11, 11-8, 11-9.

Junior Boys Band 2 was also a round robin of seven players and as in the girls event, the top seed Matt Van Yperen (Sx) only won two matches. Jake Mitchell (Sy) and James Wright (Co) both won five matches each, but it was Mitchell, who won when they played each other, so he topped the band. Third place went to James’ twin Alex, who won four times. Also with four wins was second seed Harry Collins (Sx), who lost out by virtue of losing to Alex.

Cadet Boys Band 1 was a round robin of 9 players. Two players finished on seven wins each: second seed James Smith (K) and Shaquille Webb-Dixon (Sy) who punched well above his weight with five unexpected wins. His only loss was to Smith in the fifth game, which meant Smith won the band. Webb-Dixon had an excellent win over top seed Tom Windram (K), who also lost to Smith (3-0) and finished in third place. Smith’s only loss was to Ben Foster (K), who enjoyed a good day’s play, as he won three matches from the second from bottom ranked position. Carl Baldry (Co) is also worthy of mention, as he was the third lowest ranked player in the band, yet defeated five opponents to finish in fourth place.

Cadet Girls was a round robin of seven players with almost the same entrants as the junior girls, except that Ruth Pickering replaced Evie Foster. Holly Holder (Sx) excelled to top the group, beating the highly ranked Hiba Feredj on the way. Feredj came second and Kate Cheer beat Emma Sheen for the bronze medal.

Cadet Boys Band 2 was the largest event with 30 entrants. There were initially six groups of five players, which were then placed into a second round of groups (five groups of six players) according to where the players ended up in their initial groups. Therefore all players got nine matches each. The only major upset in the initial round was that Kell Davies (K), the lowest ranked in his group finished second with three unexpected wins. His five game match vs. Josh Selby (Ox) included a 32-30 first game!!! This is the highest scoring game in any tournament I have refereed. Group A, which contained the six initial group winners was won by third seed Nathan Knowles (Mi), who won all five of his matches. However, it was not all plain sailing for the lad from London Academy. He went to the wire (11-9 in the fifth) with Reiss Vydelingum (K) and won 20-18 in the fourth games against Marley Cross (Sy). Vydelingum took second place in a three-way count-back with second seed Jay Ghazi-Timms (Mi) in third and Naphat Boonyaprapa (Nk) in fourth place. Top seed Kareem Bandaogo (Mi) will have been disappointed with his fifth position. Group B (the runners-up group) was topped by Luke Carter (K), who won all five of his matches and second place was clinched by George Hazell (Sx) in another three-way count-back from Marcus Bracey (Sx) and Ethan Ball (Ox).

Cadet Boys Band 3 consisted of 18 players split into two groups of nine players. Group 1 was won by no. 1 seed, Dexter Sherin (Sx), which is unusual, as usually in the lowest band, seedings count for little. Sherin won all eight of his matches only dropping two ends in the process. Two of these were to Alfie Little (Mi), who finished in fifth place in the group. Second place in the group went to the very impressive seven-year-old from Norfolk, Naphong Boonyaprapa. Yes you are reading correctly, a seven-year old won six matches in a 2 star tournament! Expect great things from this youngster in the future. Second seed, Owen Bryan (Sy) also won six matches, but finished third in the group, as he lost to Boonyaprapa. Roddy McGillivray (Sx) finished fourth in the group. In group 2, it was Daniel Howard (E), who dominated with Kai Ghazi-Timms (Mi) the group runner-up. Third and fourth positions in group 2 were achieved by George Long (Mi) and Gracie Edwards (E) respectively. The gold medal was won in quick time by Howard in a straight sets victory over Sherin in the final 11-3, 11-6, 11-6. In the bronze medal match, Ghazi-Timms prevailed again in straight sets.

Final Positions:
Junior Boys Band 1:
1) Shane Clark (Mi)
2) James Denyer (E)
3) Charlie Bates (E)
4) Karim Khassal (Mi)
5) Daniel Pound (Sx)
6) Toby Bartram (K)
7) Oliver Hack (Ha)
8) Musa Sharif-Ali (Mi)
Junior Girls:
1) Evie Foster (K)
2) Emma Sheen (Sx)
3) Kate Cheer (Sx)
4) Holly Holder (Sx)
5) Hiba Feredj (Mi)
6) Jasmine Chan (Mi)
7) Shristi Ghosh (Bu)
Junior Boys Band 2:
1) Jake Mitchell (Sy)
2) James Wright (Co)
3) Alex Wright (Co)
4) Harry Collins (Sx)
5) Matt Van Yperen (Sx)
6) Ryan Gregory (Sx)
7) Freddy Goodall (Sx)
Cadet Boys Band 1:
1) James Smith (K)
2) Shaquille Webb-Dixon (Sy
3) Tom Windram (K)
4) Carl Baldry (Co)
5) Jack Merton (K)
6) Ben Foster (K)
7) Connor Russell (K)
8) Timur Hashimi (Mi)
9) Arbi Tola (Mi)
Cadet Girls:
1) Holly Holder (Sx)
2) Hiba Feredj (Mi)
3) Kate Cheer (Sx)
4) Emma Sheen (Sx)
5) Ruth Pickering (Do)
6) Jasmine Chan (Mi)
7) Shristi Ghosh (Bu)
Cadet Boys Band 2:
1) Nathan Knowles (Mi)
2) Reiss Vydelingum (K)
3) Jay Ghazi-Timms (Mi)
4) Naphat Boonyaprapa (Nk)
5) Kareem Bandaogo (Mi)
6) Marley Cross (Sy)
7) Luke Carter (K)
8) George Hazell (Sx)
9) Marcus Bracey (Sx)
10) Ethan Ball (Ox)
11) Kell Davies (K)
12) Ben Naylor-Smith (Bu)
13) William Goodstone (Sx)
14) Che Marshall (Mi)
15) Eren Gozcu (Mi)
16) George Mills (Mi)
17) Viral Kanji-Varsani (Sx)
18) Josh Selby (Ox)
19) Kyle Murphy (Mi)
20) Hamza Ansari (K)
21) Maxwell Allen (Sy)
22) Alistair Smith (Sx)
23) David Poole (Sx)
24) Scott Covey (Sx)
25) Chamika Weerasinghe (K) (pulled out ill after the initial group)
26) Shayan Naserbakht (Mi)
27) Theo Achampong (Mi)
28) Anthony Atkins (Sy)
29) Nick West (Sx)
30) Lehman Chan (Mi)
Mixed Cadet Band 3:
1) Daniel Howard (E)
2) Dexter Sherin (Sx)
3) Kai Ghazi-Timms (Mi)
4) Naphong Boonyaprapa (Nk)
5) George Long (Mi)
6) Owen Bryan (Sy)
7) Roddy McGillivray (Sx)
8) Gracie Edwards (E)
9) Alfie Little (Mi)
10) Hammad Ansari (K)
11) Dominic Hawkins (Sx)
12) Ollie Field (Sx)
13) Liam Smith (K)
14) Matthew Weller (Sx)
15) Joe Worskett (Sx)
16) Amelia Chan (Mi)
17) Dhyana Desai (Mi)
18) Sam Wray (Sx-pulled out injured after his first match)