SOUTH EAST REGIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS
Tonbridge School, 7th February
The fourth playing of this regional event saw 32 players from Christ’s Hospital, Eastbourne, St. Dunstan’s, Tonbridge and Whitgift play for the singles and doubles trophies in both U16 and Senior age groups, writes Ian Jackson.
The Senior singles was dominated by Tonbridge with three of the four semi-finalists. The top two seeds made the final where the hard hitting Dan Hutt (Tonbridge) saw off the dogged defence from Charlie Mabbutt (Whitgift). In the first plate Tom Owen (St. Dunstan’s) came through relatively easily beating Higginson (Christ’s Hospital) in the final. The second plate final was an all Whitgift affair and the improving Ollie Horner saw off his doubles partner, Abbas.
As Tonbridge dominated the Seniors, Whitgift dominated the under sixteens with three semi-finalists. Again the top two seeds made the final but Cameron Low (Whitgift) was too consistent for Greg Mellor (Christ’s Hospital). He became the first under fifteen to win the under sixteen title and looks a useful prospect. In the first plate the Whitgift number four Kofi Addei showed their strength in depth by winning a hard fought final. The second plate was an all Christ’s Hospital affair with Albert Burgess coming through to win a well-matched competition.
Tonbridge’s dominance continued in the Senior doubles where Tonbridge 1 played Tonbridge 2 in the final. The latter had had a tough route to the final beating both Whitgift 1 and St. Dunstan’s 1 in close games to get there. Dan Hutt partnered by Mide Segun were too strong for the Tonbridge 2 and deservedly took the doubles title. In the plate Whitgift 1 were comfortable winners over Christ’s Hospital 1.
Whitgift were not quite as dominant in the under sixteen doubles as their second pair were narrowly beaten by Tonbridge 1 in the first round who were then narrowly defeated by Christ’s Hospital 1 in the semi-final. However Christ’s Hospital were no match for Whitgift 1 in the final who took the doubles relatively comfortably in the end. Whitgift 2 managed to win the plate but only after an excellent battle against Christ’s Hospital 2.
The day was enjoyed by all the players, who had enjoyed plenty of good standard fives, and the spectators who not only appreciated the play but also the day being not quite as cold as had been forecast. Next year the regionals move on the Christ’s Hospital and it seems that Whitgift will be very much the school to beat.
RESULTS (Full results to come)
Semi-finals: Hutt bt Segun 15-7; Mabbut bt Muscat 15-5
Final: Hutt bt Mabbu 11-0, 11-6
Semi-finals: Tonbridge 1 bt Whitgift 2 11-1, 11-3; Tonbridge 2 bt St Dunstan’s 1 11-7, 11-1
Final: Tonbridge 1 bt Tonbridge 2 11-4, 11-5
Plate: Whitgift 1
Under 16 singles
Semi-finals: Low bt Burton 15-8; Mellor bt Prakash 15-9
Final: Low bt Mellor 11-2, 11-5
Under 16 Doubles
Semi-finals: Whitgift 1 bt Tonbridge 2 11-0, 11-3; Christ’s Hospital 1 bt Tonbridge 1 11-9, 12-10
Final: Whitgift 1 bt Christ’s Hospital 1 11-8, 11-1
Plate: Whitgift 2