Women's Band 1 winner Emily Bolton (centre) with runner-up Mollie Patterson and Table Tennis England Board member Tom Purcell

Evans and Bolton take top bands in Blackpool

Author:
Paul Stimpson

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Cumbria’s Emily Bolton and Callum Evans of Wales won the women’s and men’s Band 1 events on day one of the Blackpool Grand Prix.

For Evans, it backed up his win in the same band at the last Grand Prix in Nottingham, and leaves him in pole position to claim the overall title.

Men’s Band 1 Singles

Winner Callum Evans (left) and runner-up Graeme Barella with Tom Purcell

Callum Evans of Wales won all four matches in the round-robin, losing only one game along the way as he came from 1-0 down to defeat Jamie Liu 3-1 (3-11, 11-3, 11-6, 11-3). Runner-up was Graeme Barella, who lost 3-0 (9, 7, 9) to Evans but won the other three matches.

Women’s Band 1

Emily Bolton lived up to top billing with three wins out of three, but she was pushed hard by Mollie Patterson, who took her to five before Bolton won 3-2 (4-11, 14-12, 11-8, 4-11, 11-6).

Patterson finished second, reversing a Band 2 defeat by Beth Richards earlier in the day.

Men’s Band 2

Zac Cantor (right) and Graeme Barella

Lancashire’s Zak Cantor won at his local Grand Prix by defeating Northumberland’s Graeme Barella in four games. The score was 11-7, 11-13, 12-10, 11-5 in favour of the winner.

Women’s Band 2  

Beth Richards (centre) and Mollie Patterson

Wales’ Beth Richards was undefeated in the five-player round-robin, with the crucial victory over the top-ranked player Mollie Patterson by a 3-0 (11-7, 11-7, 12-10) margin.

All but three of the matches were decided in three, and only one in five – but it saw a notable comeback from Jamie Lee Harley to defeat Paulina Orzechowski 3-2 (11-13, 4-11, 11-9, 11-6, 11-3).

Men’s Band 3

Joseph Goss (right) with runner-up Jamie Nordin

Norfolk’s Joseph Goss beat Jamie Nordin of Surrey 3-1 (13-11, 11-8, 6-11, 11-4) to take the Band 3 title.

Women’s Band 3

Jamie Lee Harley (left) and Lara Stirling

Jamie Lee Harley of Wales defeated Lara Stirling of Scotland in the final.

Men’s Band 4

Winner Pawel Orzechowski (right) and runner-up Fraser Riley (left)

Pawel Orzechowski recovered from 2-1 down to defeat Fraser Riley in a trans-Pennine final. Yorkshire’s Riley culd not press home his advantage and it was his Lancashire opponent who prevailed 3-2 (13-11, 5-11, 10-12, 11-8, 11-3).

Women’s Band 4

Swetha Katri (centre) and runner-up Lara Stirling

Swetha Khatri repeated her victory at the last Grand Prix in Nottingham as she defeated Scotland’s Lara Stirling, who had to settle for the runners-up spot again, as she did in Band 3. It was 3-0 (11-9, 11-7, 11-3) to the Avon athlete in the final.

Men’s Band 5

Winner Jamie Lupton (right) and runner-up Liam Bibby

Durham’s Jamie Lupton overcame Liam Bibby of Cheshire 3-1 (11-4, 11-8, 3-11, 11-9) to take top honours in the Band 5 event.

Men’s Band 6

Dan Dodds (centre) and Liam Bibby with Tom Purcell

Liam Bibby was also runner-up in Band 6, beaten by another Durham player in the shape of Dan Dodds. Bibby won a marathon first game but could not sustain it and Dodds eventually triumphed 3-1 (16-18, 11-7, 11-8, 11-6).

 

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