25 players took part in the Jarvis Sports Horsham Spinners Veterans and Senior 1 Star Ratings tournament on 10th November at the home of Horsham Spinners Table Tennis Club, Farlington School.

There were two bands of eight players for both seniors and veterans, but a late withdrawal meant only seven players in the Veterans Band 2. There was one perennial winner, who as usual won both Veterans Band 1 and Senior Band 1 (Rory Scott of host club Horsham Spinners and Ireland).

There was a new band winner in Paul Nicol (E) in Vets Band 2 and a third-time winner in Stuart Vincent (Sx) – Senior Band 2.

Veterans’ Band 1

Vets Band 1 winner Rory Scott (left) and runner-up Dean Rose

Scott was top seed and did indeed win all seven of his matches, but was pushed to five sets by fourth-placed Fawzi Yousif (Sx) and lost three more ends.

Second seed Dave Butler (IRL) and third seed Dean Rose (K), both won five matches, but Rose got the silver medal as he beat Butler. Chris Pullinger (Sy), who finished in fifth place, was the other player to beat Rose. Butler defeated Yousif 12-10 in the fifth in a nail-biter.

Ken Lewis (E) got two wins and finished sixth in a two-way countback with Jonathan Chernett (Sy), who achieved both of his wins (vs Pullinger and Ajay Shah (Sy)) in the fifth game and finished seventh, with Shah eighth.

Veterans’ Band 2

Paul Nicol (E), a regular attendee, won his first title, from the top seeded position. No-one extended him the distance, but he did lose a few games. He won his six encounters.

The runner-up was Mehrdad Amini (Sx), playing in his first tournament and he won his remaining five matches, but was pushed to five games by Peter Cracknell (Sx).

Another debutant, Youngkwan Moon (Sy) finished in third place, with four wins. Second seed, Colin Barham (E) came fourth, with three victories. Cracknell was fifth with two wins and Sorin Lakatos (Ha) came sixth with a single win (over Mick Stanners (Sy)) in his first event, as a player, being more used to watching his son play.

Senior Band 1

Rory Scott beat Sepehr Bidari to the Band 1 gold

Sepehr Bidari (SCO) was the favourite for the tournament and he started well, winning his first six matches, although having to work for it and losing three games to three different players.

Meanwhile, second seed Scott picked up six wins of his own, being extended to the fifth game by Butler and losing a further three ends to different opponents. The final match for Sep was vs Rory and the first game was very close, with Scott closing it out 11-9. In the second, Bidari opened up what looked like an unassailable lead at 9-3, but Scott gradually clawed it back using a more defensive style than usual and took the game 15-13. In the third the momentum was clearly with Scott and he never looked back storming to an 11-3 win, finishing with a big backhand winner.

Third seed Dan Pound (Sx) did finish third, with five wins, although his match vs Scott was very close (11-9, 11-9, 10-12, 12-10), as was his match vs Bidari (11-8, 11-8, 9-11, 12-10). He defeated both Butler and Lewis in five games as well.

Rose came fourth with four wins, Butler was fifth with three wins, Brandon Bennett (Sx) was sixth with two wins and Lewis was seventh with one win. 12-year-old Harry Yip (Sx) finished in eighth place, but did pick up a good fifth-game win over Butler.

Senior Band 2

Stuart Vincent (left) finished top ahead of Abdur-Rahman Kelani in Senior Band 2

Stuart Vincent (Horsham Spinners-Sx) won his third band in as many attempts and so still has a 100% record of wins in Sussex Ratings tournaments. However, as with his second tournament win, he didn’t win all of his matches and indeed he lost to the same opponent each time, Mina Matta (Sx), who plays well against Vincent’s long pimples style and won 3-2. Vincent only lost one other end in his six victories.

Abdur-Rahman Kelani (K) finished in second place, also with six wins, but lost 3-0 to Vincent. He conceded two other ends. Jozef Krakovsky (Sx) won five times and finished third. He beat Matta in the deciding game in their first match of the day and lost one other end in the matches he won. Matta came fourth, with four wins.

Fifth place went to Lakatos with three victories and Cracknell came sixth with a brace. Stanners also won twice, but ended up in seventh place, as he lost to Cracknell.

Final Placings

Veterans’ Band 1: 1 Rory Scott (IRL), 2 Dean Rose (K), 3 Dave Butler (IRL), 4 Fawzi Yousif (Sx), 5 Chris Pullinger (Sy), 6 Ken Lewis (E), 7 Jonathan Chernett (Sy), 8 Ajay Shah (Sy)

Veterans’ Band 2: 1 Paul Nicol (E), 2 Mehrdad Amini (Sx), 3 Youngkwan Moon (Sy), 4 Colin Barham (E), 5 Peter Cracknell (Sx), 6 Sorin Lakatos (Ha), 7 Mick Stanners (Sy),

Senior Band 1: 1 Rory Scott (IRL), 2 Sepehr Bidari (SCO), 3 Dan Pound (Sx), 4 Dean Rose (K), 5 Dave Butler (IRL), 6 Brandon Bennett (Sx), 7 Ken Lewis (E), 8 Harry Yip (Sx)

Senior Band 2: 1 Stuart Vincent (Sx), 2 Abdur-Rahman Kelani (K), 3 Jozef Krakovsky (Sx), 4 Mina Matta (Sx), 5 Sorin Lakatos (Ha), 6 Peter Cracknell (Sx), 7 Mick Stanners (Sy), 8 Peter Vincent (Sx)