Louis Price of TableTennisDaily takes on Joe Cope of BATTS (picture by Chris Rayner)

TableTennisDaily and Ackworth are flawless at JBL

Paul Stimpson

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TableTennisDaily and Ackworth School took charge of their respective Premier Divisions with 100% records at the first weekend of the Junior British League at Derby Arena.

Ackworth were also the girls’ Team of the Weekend, while the boys’ Team of the Weekend award went to Ormeau Belfast. Player of the Weekend was Tianer Yu of Greenhouse Girls.

Click here to visit the British League website for full results and league tables

All pictures by Chris Rayner (more will appear on our Flickr page in due course)

The TableTennisDaily team dropped only three individual matches all weekend in the boys’ top flight, including the opening match as BATTS’ Ethan Walsh beat Amirul Hussain in five.

TableTennisDaily came back to win that 5-1 and then had their closest match in the second round, seeing Joseph Hee win his two matches to level matches at 1-1 (beating Hussain) and then at 2-2 (overcoming Daniel Simonson). However, Louis Price put TTD back in front by beating Joshua Bruce 3-1 and Hussain completed a 4-2 scoreline by seeing off Robert Pelc in three.

There final three matches all resulted in 6-0 scorelines as TTD saw off Swerve, Dublin and Ormesby to sit four points clear at the top of the table.

There is a clutch of four teams on 6pts – Draycott & Long Eaton with three wins and two defeats (to Ormesby and Fusion) and Fusion, Grantham College and BATTS all with two wins, two draws and one defeat.

Ormesby are only a point further back, meaning six out of the eight teams still have plenty to play for – though TableTennisDaily will take some catching. Dublin picked up a solitary point for a draw against Ormesby in the first round, while Swerve are yet to open their account.

Price was the only player to boast a maximum 10 wins from 10, with team-mate Simonson, Grantham’s Luc Miller and Rhys Davies of Draycott & Long Eaton all picking up 9/10.

In the girls’ top division, it was just as dominant for Ackworth, who also dropped only three individual matches – one to Kingfisher in the second round as Anaya Patel beat Sandy Choong in the final match and two to Grantham College in round four. Raquel Sao Pedro won both for Grantham, in the second and final matches.

It is Grantham and Kingfisher who are Ackworth’s closest challengers and they are both three points behind after winning three matches and drawing with each other in the final tie of the weekend.

That was a see-saw encounter as Sao Pedro put Grantham in front, defeating Katarina Wetzel, before Patel beat Danielle Kelly 3-2 (6-11, 14-12, 11-8, 9-11, 11-4) and Mia O’Rahilly Egan sunk Gracie Edwards in three to edge Kingfisher ahead.

Kelly overcame Wetzel and Sao Pedro beat Egan 3-2 (11-6, 6-11, 8-11, 11-8, 11-9) to restore Grantham’s lead, but Patel ensured the spoils were shared as she edged out Edwards 11-9, 11-9, 12-10.

Cardiff City and Wensum are both on six points, having won three and lost two, and there is then a four-point gap to Draycott & Long Eaton and Joola Plymouth, with Fusion yet to get off the mark.

The averages are headed by Ackworth’s Jasmin Wong and by Sao Pedro, both with 100% records from 10 matches, while Ruby Chan of Ackworth is just one behind.

Ackworth School were girls’ team of the Weekend. They are pictured with England coach Marcus Gustafson

There was a similar record for London Academy in Girls’ Division 1, winning all five matches and only dropping three individual ties to lead the division by four points ahead of Draycott & Long Eaton, with Woodfield and Wensum II a point further back.

Woodfield took two of the matches off London Academy – Kate Watkinson notably coming from 2-0 down to defeat Sienna Jetha 3-2 (11-13, 12-14, 11-8, 11-8, 11-8) in a terrific tussle. Megan Jones also beat Jetha in that match, although Woodfield were already 4-1 down.

London Academy’s Ianau twins – Natalia and Patricia – were in formidable form, both winning all 10 of their matches.

It is closer at the top of Girls’ Division 2, where Brighton lead the way on 9pts. The dropped point was against their nearest challengers, Greenhouse, who are a point behind having won three matches and also drawn with Bishop Auckland.

The Brighton-Greenhouse match was in the second round, and Greenhouse led 2-0 thanks to Maliha Baig and Tianer Yu, before Joelle Bennett, Jodie Morris and Lauren Loosemore turned the tables to put Brighton 3-2 ahead. Yu then overcame Bennett 3-0 (11-1, 11-7, 12-10) to seal a draw and continue on her way to a 100% record, the only one in the division.

Player of the weekend Tianer Yu with England coach Marcus Gustafson

Division 3 is led by St Neots, who won all five matches and are two points clear of Cippenham, who in turn are three ahead of Lillington.

St Neots did not have any whitewashes, winning two matches by 5-1 and three by 4-2 – all of which were poised at 2-2 after four individual matches. The players spearheading St Neots, Aditi Dhillon and Stefania Popa, both had a 90% win record, as did Hannah Silcock of Cippenham.

Back in the boys’ competition, there are some close divisions, including Division 1 which sees Mid Ulster just ahead of fellow Irish team Ormeau Belfast on set difference as both teams have eight points and an identical match record of 22-8.

Both sides are unbeaten, having won three and drawn two, including drawing their meeting in the first round of fixtures, when Mid Ulster came from 3-1 down to level thanks to victories by Joe Sheard and Tom Colvin over Max Skelton and Jonathan Mooney respectively.

James Skelton won both his matches in that fixture and heads the averages with 9/10.

Ormeau Belfast were boys’ Team of the Weekend

Division 2 sees the top two unbeaten but it is Ormesby II who lead the way with four draws and one defeat, two points clear of Joola Plymouth Torbay Academy, who won twice and drew three times.

The top two drew their clash, which Torbay led 3-2 before Ben Savage earned a see-saw 3-2 (11-9, 6-11, 11-3, 6-11, 11-7) win over Jakub Piwowar in the final match. Adam Webster won all 10 of his matches for Ormesby II over the weekend to lead the averages.

There are no unbeaten sides in Division 3, where Urban top the table, ahead of Draycott & Long Eaton II on match difference with both sides on 7pts. The meeting between the top two went in favour of Urban, who came from 2-1 down to win.

Formby and Joola Plymouth Insideout are also in touch with the leaders in a division in which every team won at least once.

That in turn had an effect on the averages, with a best of 70% shared by James Hamblett (Urban), Herbie Sage (Insideout) and Toby Ellis (Draycott).

There are three unbeaten teams in Division 4, with Sussex Blades II (W3, D2) holding a one-point lead over Lillington and Greenhouse II (both W2, D3). Crusaders are only a point further back. All the matches involving the top three finished 3-3.

The averages are led by David McKenzie of Greenhouse, who won nine out of 10.

Division 5 sees Birmingham TTA in a three-point lead thanks to their perfect record of five victories. Halton are second and they also have a three-point cushion over third-placed Wood Green. It is tight at the bottom, with three teams on three points – no team lost more than twice in this division.

Average-wise, the only perfect record belonged to Jakub Kurowski, with 10 from 10.

The eight-team Division 6 has Fulham Brunswick out in front with nine points, ahead of Nailsworth Phoenix II on match difference.

The only point the top two dropped was against each other in the first round, which was a 3-3 draw in which both teams led at some point. Brandon Sangchin levelled for Fulham in the final match against Tom Powlesland.

Two players had 100% records from 10 matches – Ethan Scully of Nottingham Sycamore II and Benjamin Palmer-Jones of Fulham.

Finally, in Division 7, Byng Hall top of the eight teams, having won four and drawn 1. They lead Greenhouse III and Corby Smash II by two points. Byng Hall’s draw was against Corby, who levelled in the final match when Gregory Fray defeated Noah Featherstone Csillag.

Top of the averages are Cardiff City II’s Rhys Hetherton and Greenhouse’s Shay Graham, who both won eight out of 10.


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