Shae Thakker is unbeaten in the para competition

South East target a title hat-trick

Author:
Paul Stimpson

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England South East are on course for a clean sweep of boys’, girls’ and para titles after day two of the School Games at Loughborough University.

The boys’ team are the only unbeaten side left in their competition, while the girls will face a stiff challenge from the North East, both sides having yet to taste defeat.

The para event sees Shae Thakker as the only unbeaten athlete going into day three, when the final two ties of the round-robin competitions will be played.

The School Games 2017 umpires

Boys

No change in the standings in the first match of the day – round 4 overall – as the leading four all won with matching 4-1 scorelines.

South West overcame Wales, though they were behind when Benedict Watson held off Olly Tyndall in five in the opening tie (11-6, 9-11, 8-11, 11-9, 11-5).

Scotland remained in charge of their own destiny, seeing off Northern Ireland – James McGrath preventing the whitewash by taking the last match in five against Keir Morton, who had earlier come from 2-0 down to beat James Skelton in a decider.

South East kept up their unbeaten record against North West, although James Smith’s 100% singles record came to an end in his sixth match as he was impressively beaten by Harry Watson in five (11-9, 5-11, 11-2, 10-12, 11-9).

North East, one win behind the leading pack, retained their interest in the medals with a whitewash of Midlands, although Sam Chesterman took Josh Weatherby to 13-11 in the fifth.

It was round 5 where the significant changes were made to the league table as South East ended the 100% record of South West – preserving their own unbeaten streak in the process – while North East inflicted a first defeat on Scotland.

South East had to hold off a determined fightback from South West, who were 2-0 down but levelled at 2-2 when Olly Tyndall shaded a thriller against James Smith 3-2 (9-11, 3-11, 11-5, 11-9, 17-15). Israel Awolaja’s second singles win of the tie saw South East home.

Meanwhile, the last two players with 100% singles records met in the last match to finish on the day. Something had to give and it was Shayan Siraj who remained with a perfect record, beating Dylan Curry 3-1.

That also clinched the match victory for North East over Scotland in a close encounter which saw North East 1-0 up and then 2-1 down before coming through. Joe Clark’s four-game victory over Calum Morrison gave Siraj the opportunity to clinch it in his side’s favour.

It all leaves South East out in front, though only one win ahead of South West, Scotland and North East.

Also in Round 5, Midlands broke their win duck in spectacular fashion, with a 5-0 margin over Northern Ireland, Sam Chesterman and Naphat Boonyaprapa taking two singles wins each and combining to take the doubles.

North West had to concede their match against Wales 5-0 because of injury to two of their players.

Shayan Siraj boasts the only 100% record in singles matches

Results
Round 4
England North East 5 England Midlands 0
Shayan Siraj bt Sam Chesterman 3-1 (11-7, 11-7, 8-11, 11-7)
Josh Weatherby bt Tom McIntosh 3-1 (11-8, 5-11, 11-4, 11-3)
Siraj & Weatherby bt Chesterman & Naphat Boonyaprapa 3-0 (11-5, 11-4, 11-6)
Weatherby bt Chesterman 3-2 (11-4, 5-11, 4-11, 11-8, 13-11)
Siraj bt McIntosh 3-0 (11-5, 11-8, 11-9)

England South East 4 England North West 1
James Smith bt Connor Whitehead 3-2 (11-9, 5-11, 9-11, 11-2, 11-9)
George Hazell bt Harry Watson 3-1 (11-5, 9-11, 12-10, 11-5)
Smith & Israel Awolaja bt Whitehead & Watson 3-1 (11-5, 9-11, 11-5, 11-6)
Watson bt Smith 3-2 (11-9, 5-11, 11-2, 10-12, 11-9)
Hazell bt Whitehead 3-0 (11-6, 11-7, 11-4)

Scotland 4 Northern Ireland 1
Calum Morrison bt James McGrath 3-1 (11-5, 7-11, 11-8, 11-5)
Keir Morton bt James Skelton 3-2 (11-13, 9-11, 11-6, 11-3, 11-4)
Morton & Dylan Curry bt Skelton & Julian Kelly 3-0 (11-7, 11-4, 11-8)
Morrison bt Skelton 3-1 (11-4, 11-9, 10-12, 11-9)
McGrath bt Morton 3-2 (9-11, 11-7, 11-9, 3-11, 11-9)

England South West 4 Wales 1
Benedict Watson bt Olly Tyndall 3-2 (11-6, 9-11, 8-11, 11-9, 11-5)
Matt Daish bt Joseph Roberts 3-1 (11-9, 11-7, 9-11, 11-8)
Tyndall & Artur Caltabiano bt Watson & Josh Stacey 3-2 (9-11, 11-8, 11-5, 12-14, 11-6)
Daish bt Watson 3-1 (11-7, 10-12, 11-9, 12-10)
Tyndall bt Roberts 3-0 (11-7, 11-4, 11-6)

Round 5
Wales 5 England North West 0
Walkover

England Midlands 5 Northern Ireland 0
Sam Chesterman bt James Skelton 3-1 (8-11, 11-4, 11-6, 11-9)
Naphat Boonyaprapa bt James McGrath 3-1 (11-8, 11-6, 7-11, 11-7)
Chesterman & Boonyaprapa bt Skelton & Julian Kelly 3-0 (11-7, 11-3, 13-11)
Boonyaprapa bt Skelton 3-1 (14-12, 11-13, 11-7, 11-8)
Chesterman bt McGrath 3-0 (11-2, 11-8, 11-5)

England South East 3 England South West 2
Israel Awolaja bt Olly Tyndall 3-0 (11-9, 16-14, 17-15)
James Smith bt Artur Caltabiano 3-0 (11-9, 8-11, 11-6, 11-4)
Tyndall & Caltabiano bt Smith & George Hazell 3-1 (13-11, 8-11, 11-7, 11-5)
Tyndall bt Smith 3-2 (9-11, 3-11, 11-5, 11-9, 17-15)
Awolaja bt Caltabiano 3-1 (11-5, 11-2, 11-13, 12-10)

England North East 3 Scotland 2
Shayan Siraj bt Calum Morrison 3-0 (11-7, 11-4, 12-10)
Dylan Curry bt Joe Clark 3-1 (9-11, 11-5, 11-5, 11-7)
Curry & Keir Morton bt Siraj & Josh Weatherby 3-2 (11-3, 14-16, 11-7, 10-12, 11-6)
Clark bt Morrison 3-1 (7-11, 11-6, 11-9, 11-5)
Siraj bt Curry 3-1 (11-8, 15-13, 2-11, 11-9)

Girls

The three unbeaten regions remained that way at the end of Round 4, and they all had players boasting 100% records.

For the North East, both Gauri Duhan and Jasmin Wong stood at 6/6 after winning their two individual matches against Northern Ireland, though they needed five to overcome Rebecca Finn and Lucy Craig respectively. The Irish girls took the doubles, also in five.

For the other two unbeaten sides, Kate Cheer kept up her perfect record for South East in their 4-1 win over Scotland, while Midlands registered the same margin against North West, with Darcie Proud contributing two singles and the doubles alongside Mollie Patterson – the latter sat out the singles and so remained six from six personally.

Wales put their first win on the board by defeating South West 4-1, Beth Richards and Lara Whitton both winning their two singles matches and SW taking the doubles in five.

Two of the 100% club met in Round 5 and it was Patterson’s record which went in dramatic fashion as Cheer came from 2-0 down to win 3-2 (7-11, 6-11, 15-13, 11-7, 11-2). It was also the pivotal match, giving South East an unassailable 3-1 lead. They extended that to 4-1 to remain joint top of the standings at the end of day two.

The other team at the top is North East and they ended the day with a 4-1 triumph against South West, Jasmin Wong taking her 100% record in singles to eight matches and Sophie Barlow chipping in by winning the first match of the tie.

North West picked up a terrific win over Scotland thanks to Alice Dillon’s comeback from 2-0 down in the final match against Faye Leggett. Dillon took it 3-2 (9-11, 7-11, 11-9, 11-5, 11-9) to make it 3-2 to North West after Scotland had come from 2-0 behind to level the match score.

Northern Ireland beat Wales 5-0, with Rebecca Finn and Lucy Craig notching the singles points and Nicole Scott joining Finn to claim the doubles.

Jasmin Wong remains unbeaten in singles matches

Results
Round 4
England South East 4 Scotland 1
Kate Cheer bt Faye Leggett 3-0 (11-4, 11-9, 11-5)
Isabelle Joubeily bt Tessa Yau 3-0 (11-5, 11-5, 12-10)
Cheer & Joubeily bt Leggett & Yau 3-1 (11-5, 8-11, 11-9, 11-2)
Cheer bt Yau 3-0 (11-5, 11-6, 11-8)
Leggett bt Joubeily 3-2 (7-11, 8-11, 11-6, 11-5, 11-8)

Wales 4 England South West 1
Beth Richards bt Gemma Kerr 3-0 (12-10, 11-2, 11-8)
Lara Whitton bt Katie Holt 3-0 (11-6, 11-6, 11-9)
Amy Blagbrough & Holt bt Whitton & Jamie-Lee Harley 3-2 (11-7, 6-11, 8-11, 12-10, 11-8)
Whitton bt Kerr 3-1 (11-6, 11-7, 11-13, 11-7)
Richards bt Holt 4-1 (6011, 11-6, 15-13, 11-1)

England Midlands 4 England North West 1
Darcie Proud bt Alice Dillon 3-1 (11-9, 15-13, 11-13, 11-6)
Robyn Cosgrove bt Bhavika Mistry 3-1 (11-5, 8-11, 11-4, 13-11)
Proud & Mollie Patterson bt Dillon & Cosgrove 3-0 (11-4, 11-8, 11-7)
Proud bt Cosgrove 3-0 (11-5, 11-8, 11-2)
Mistry bt Dillon 3-2 (5-11, 11-7, 11-6, 3-11, 12-10)

England North East 4 Northern Ireland 1
Gauri Duhan bt Rebecca Finn 3-2 (6-11, 11-5, 10-12, 11-9, 11-9)
Jasmin Wong bt Lucy Craig 3-2 (11-9, 9-11, 9-11, 11-8, 11-6)
Finn & Nicole Scott bt Duhan & Sophie Barlow 3-2 (11-3, 4-11, 8-11, 11-9, 11-6)
Duhan bt Craig 3-0 (11-4, 11-3, 11-7)
Wong bt Finn 3-0 (14-12, 12-10, 11-9)

Round 5
England South East 4 England Midlands 1
Kate Cheer bt Darcie Proud 3-0 (11-9, 11-9, 11-4)
Mollie Patterson bt Sarah Menghistab 3-1 (11-5, 11-6, 8-11, 11-7)
Cheer & Isabelle Joubeily bt Patterson & Proud 3-0 (11-4, 14-12, 11-9)
Cheer bt Patterson 3-2 (7-11, 6-11, 15-13, 11-7, 11-2)
Menghistab bt Proud 3-1 (7-11, 11-9, 11-7, 11-9)

England North West 3 Scotland 2
Alice Dillon bt Tessa Yau 3-1 (11-4, 9-11, 13-11, 16-14)
Megan Dillon bt Faye Leggett 3-2 (9-11, 11-7, 11-7, 7-11, 11-8)
Leggett & Yau bt Alice Dillon & Robyn Cosgrove 3-1 (11-7, 4-11, 11-6, 11-7)
Yau bt Megan Dillon 3-0 (11-7, 11-6, 11-7)
Alice Dillon bt Leggett 3-2 (9-11, 7-11, 11-9, 11-5, 11-9)

England North East 4 England South West 1
Sophie Barlow bt Katie Holt 3-2 (6-11, 11-7, 11-8, 10-12, 11-6)
Jasmin Wong bt Gemma Kerr 3-1 (5-11, 12-10, 13-11, 11-6)
Wong & Gauri Duhan bt Kerr & Amy Blagbrough 3-1 (11-8, 6-11, 11-8, 11-7)
Wong bt Holt 3-0 (11-7, 11-5, 11-9)
Kerr bt Barlow 3-0 (11-3, 11-9, 11-8)

Northern Ireland 5 Wales 0
Rebecca Finn bt Beth Richards 3-1 (5-11, 11-6, 15-13, 12-10)
Lucy Craig bt Lara Whitton 3-0 (11-8, 11-6, 11-7)
Finn & Nicole Scott bt Richards & Jamie-Lee Harley 3-2 (11-8, 10-12, 7-11, 13-11, 11-9)
Finn bt Whitton 3-0 (11-8, 11-6, 11-9)
Craig bt Richards 3-0 (12-10, 11-8, 11-9)

Para (standing)

Shae Thakker is the only athlete to remain unbeaten, earning his first victory over Tam Eastwood of Wales in four sets.

The South East athlete has five out of five, putting him one win ahead of Scotland’s Elliot Medland and Alex Bland of the North East, with Eastwood on three.

Thakker and Bland meet tomorrow in the seventh and final match.

Medland had a tricky day, needing five games in both his matches against Eastwood and Dylan Tynan on the South West.

David McCaughern picked up his first victory in round 5, defeating Joe Davies (NW).

Elliot Medland takes on Tam Eastwood

Results
Round 4
Alex Bland (NE) bt Joe Davies (NW) 3-0 (11-1, 11-1, 11-4)
Shae Thakker (SE) bt Dylan Tynan (SW) 3-0 (11-6, 11-2, 11-5)
Tom Spicer (MID) bt David McCaughern (NI) 3-0 (11-7, 11-9, 11-8)
Elliot Medland (SCO) bt Tam Eastwood (WAL) 3-2 (11-2, 4-11, 11-8, 11-13, 11-7)

Round 5
Thakker bt Eastwood 3-1 (11-8, 9-11, 11-6, 11-6)
Bland bt Spicer 3-0 (11-6, 11-5, 11-4)
Medland bt Tynan 3-2 (10-12, 11-6, 11-6, 12-14, 11-7)
McCaughern bt Davies 3-0 (11-8, 11-6, 11-7)

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