England returned from the European Veterans’ Championships in Sweden with three gold medals and a clutch of other podium finishes.

In the singles, there was an all-English affair in the WS75 category, with Margaret Dignum defeating Sally Bax 3-0 (11-5, 11-9, 11-7) to take gold.

And there was a third English player on the podium, Dignum having beaten Carol Judson 3-1 (11-8, 10-12, 11-5, 11-9) in the semi-finals.

The other singles gold was won by Ramesh Bhalla, who defeated Kai Merimaa of Finland 3-1 (9-11, 12-10, 11-5, 11-9) to take the MS80 title.

Ramesh Bhalla on his way to gold (picture by Michael Loveder)

And there was more gold in the doubles as Betty Bird & Jean White claimed WD80 glory by overcoming Marianne Blasberg & Erika Bruggen of Germany 3-0 (11-5, 11-7, 11-3).

There was silver for Bax & Judson in the WD75 as they were defeated 3-1 (11-7, 5-11, 11-8, 12-10) by Michele De Santa Barbara & Claudette Treinen of France in the final.

Four singles bronzes were won in total, including Geof Bax in the MS85 class, who lost 3-0 in the semi-finals to eventual champion Georg Karlsson of Sweden.

In the WS80 category, Betty Bird lost 3-1 to Sigrid Matthias of Germany, who went on to win silver, while Penny Perry lost 3-1 to Gittan Radberg Gustavii of Sweden, who won gold in the WS65 category. In the WS40 class, eventual champion Cecile Ozer of Belgium defeated Sanja Clements 3-0 in the last four.

Sanja Clements in action in Sweden (picture by Michael Loveder)

There was also bronze for Carol Eckersley & Penny Perry in the WD60 class, defeated 3-2 in semi-finals by Heike Borchardt & Carmen Petry of Germany, who went on to win silver.

There were several final appearances for English players in the consolation events, with Ken Stonebridge (MS70), Dennis Bromage (MS75) and Carol Eckersley (WS60) all winning theirs and Margaret Welsman (WS70) having to settle for silver.

In the consolation doubles, David Bowles & Christopher Pickard won the MD65 final, while Alf Perry & Bill Wall took the MD85, overcoming Geof Bax and his Spanish partner Pedro Mari Carrillo by walkover.

Linda Hales & Norma Millward were runners-up in the WD65 consolation, while Bromage, alongside Adam Hnyda of Poland, was beaten in the MD75 consolation.