Tin-Tin Ho has been called up to the Europe Youth Top-10 event – in dramatic fashion.

The 16-year-old was first reserve for the event until this morning, when the call came through that Chantal Mantz of Germany had pulled out because of illness. This allowed Tin-Tin to take her place and join Tom Jarvis as English representatives at the event in Tours, France.

With Tin-Tin in school as normal and Jarvis already en route to the Channel Tunnel accompanied by England National Coach Alan Cooke and Table Tennis England Chair Sandra Deaton, there followed an almost military operation to ensure Tin-Tin could get to France.

Cooke was stopped at Maidstone services, while Tin-Tin’s family collected her from school and ensured she had the necessary kit.

Within a couple of hours, she had joined the travelling party on the way to the event, which starts tomorrow. She is in the Junior competition and Jarvis in the Cadets.

Table Tennis England’s National Talent Development Coach Matt Stanforth said: “It was a bit crazy this morning, but it all came together in the end, and it’s fantastic that Tin-Tin’s school (City of London School for Girls) have been so supportive.

“It’s good to have a representative in both the boys’ and girls’ events. It’s a big challenge for Tin-Tin coming in to the event so late but a fantastic opportunity to test herself against the best in Europe.”

Tin-Tin competed at last year’s Top-10 event in Terni, Italy, finishing fifth in her age group. It is Jarvis’ first outing in the competition.

Meanwhile, Denise Payet and Shayan Siraj are travelling to the Eurotalents Selection Camp in Saarbrucken from October 5 to 12, where they will undergo intense training on and off the table.

Their selection follows a good performance at a week-long camp in Luxembourg at the end of August, when they were among 42 cadets from 13 countries to benefit from the guidance of leading European coaches, plus multiple Olympic and World champions from China, Zhang Yining and Chen Qi.

They will be accompanied to Germany by Talent Development Coach Chris Turner.

Paul Stimpson
October 2, 2014