Another maximum entry was received for the 12th running of the Cippenham Team 2-Star Open on Saturday. In fact, the tournament was over-subscribed and some potential entries had to be refused.

A maximum of 24 teams can be accommodated for this competition which, in addition to being a team rather than individual tournament, also features the progressive knock-out format. This is unique in open tournaments in this country and again proved very popular with teams arriving from far and wide including three from south Wales.

The tournament got under way with teams drawn into eight groups of three. All of the top ranked teams managed to win their groups and then all manoeuvred their way into the top eight finishing positions via two rounds in which winners played winners and then the losers of those matches were made to overcome a team that had finished second in their preliminary round groups.

The standout team, and eventual winners, were London Academy. They won every match 2-0 as neither Ismaila Akindiya nor Adeoye Adewale lost to any of their opponents. Indeed, the first time any player took a single game was when Joshua Nashed threatened briefly in the semi-final against Akindiya. The threat was short lived and Nashed’s Finsbury team still lost 2-0.

The final was a much closer affair. The Nigerian pair had their work cut out against the Welsh team Class Act. Akindiya was made to work all the way against Dean Cundy, who has a world ranking inside the top thousand, before finishing the set off at 11-7 in the fifth and deciding game. Neil Wright also took a game off Adewale but the final result was, like all that had gone before, 2-0 to London Academy.

Finsbury duly won third place, beating the Slumlords team of Anthony Ellis and David Ramsey 2-0. Both sets were won 3-1 with Nashed beating Ellis and Fabien Mauroy beating Ramsey.

Ed Slot and Sam Ricks, posing as The Tactical Tictacs, improved on their finishing position of a year earlier and eventually came fifth, by virtue of a 2-0 win over a Godalming team that comprised Rory Scott and Cippenham’s Simon Vine.

One of the highlights of the tournament occurred at an early stage in the preliminary round. A team of Steve Buck and Steve Smith were allowed a scratch entry as a result of another team not appearing. They lost 2-0 to the higher ranked Corby Smash but then beat one of the Welsh teams, LJ Faz, with Buck beating both Mark Farrow and Lynden Jones. The defeated team then lost also 2-1 to Corby.

Corby ultimately found their way to finish joint seventh while the other two teams kept on winning to make and eventually played one another again in their final match. This time LJ Faz were victorious and secured ninth spot overall with Buck and Smith finishing 10th.

The tournament was organised and refereed by Graham Trimming.

Finishing positions:
London Academy: Ismaila Akindiya & Adeoye Adewale
Class Act: Dean Cundy & Neil Wright
Finsbury: Josh Nashed and Fabien Mauroy
Slumlords: Anthony Ellis & David Ramsey
The Tactical Tictacs: Ed Slot & Sam Ricks
Godalming: Rory Scott & Simon Vine