Brilliant Jarvis reigns in Spain

Paul Stimpson

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Tom Jarvis (courtesy of John Upham)

Tom Jarvis has added his name to the recent roll-call of English success with victory in the Cadet Boys’ Singles at the Spanish Youth Open.

Jarvis beat Russia’s Denis Ivonin 3-1 (10-12, 11-4, 11-5, 11-4) to take the title in Platja d’Aro.

It was the only time the Skegness teenager had to come from behind to win as he made his way through the knockout stages after winning his group by beating Nils Schulze of Germany, Spain’s Javier Valero and Nawaf Al-Malki of Qatar.

He saw off Fanbo Meng of Germany 3-0 in the last 32 (11-7, 11-2, 11-7) before disposing of Lithuanian Rimas Lesiv in the last 16 by a 3-1 scoreline (12-10, 10-12, 11-5, 11-8).

His closest match was against No 3 seed Andreas Dilling of Denmark in the quarter-finals as he took the first two sets 11-5 and 11-9 before being pegged back to 2-2 (11-13, 7-11). However, Jarvis stayed strong to win the decider 12-10.

The semi-final saw Jarvis up against Florian Cnudde of Belgium and the Ormesby player triumphed 3-1 (11-7, 14-16, 13-11, 11-8) to set up the final with Ivonin.

And the youngster put his success down to a willingness to attack and not let his opponents settle.

He said: “I’m still feeling really happy. I couldn’t believe that I’d actually won, it’s just kicking in.

“I just tried to attack first, with good receives that kept them out and stopped them attacking – that was my main tactic.

“I really though I had a chance after the quarter-final, when I was 7-3 down in the fifth but I just kept on attacking and pulled it back.”

Jarvis’ success follows hot on the heels of Paul Drinkhall’s monumental victory in the Spanish Open last month when he became only the second Englishman to win an ITTF World Tour Open event.

And earlier this month, the senior men’s team of Drinkhall, Liam Pitchford, Daniel Reed and Sam Walker clinched the Challenger Division title at the World Team Championships to seal promotion back to the top division of world table tennis after a 17-year absence.

Jarvis’ team-mate Omar Khassal also made it through his group but lost in the first knockout round, going down 3-1 to Ilya Isakov on Russia.

In the Cadet Girls’ Singles, Kate Cheer and Denise Payet were both eliminated in the group stage.

Paul Stimpson (12th May 2014)

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