Young aces serve up a cracker

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POTENTIAL stars of the future had a big impact in the Sunderland and District Table Tennis Championships.

Many of the emerging and talented young players attend practice and coaching sessions up to three times a week, held in a number of venues across the city.

Their hard work and dedication has seen their performance dramatically improve over the season and it bodes well for the future.

Robert Renton capped off an excellent season, in which he played for St John C, by winning the Under-13 Boys and Cadet Boys (Under-15) events, narrowly overcoming Simon Knoph (Lanchester CC) in both events in two excellent finals.

In the U13 final, Renton rallied from 2-1 down to take the fourth game to force the match into a deciding end. Both players had opportunities to win the match but Renton just edged the fifth 11-8.

The U15 final followed a similar pattern, with Renton just emerging victorious 3-1 (11-8 in the fourth).

There were mixed fortunes in the girls events. In the U13s final, Amy Lambert beat Kate Hannah in three very tight games – 11-9, 11-6, 11-9 – before Hannah gained revenge by beating her opponent in a quite enthralling U15 final, which finished 2-11, 11-9, 17-15, 10-12, 11-6.

The Junior Girls (U18) round robin event was dominated by Eszter Soos (St John A), but Rachel Turnbull and Amy Lyle can be proud of the way they played in their first tournament.

The Sunderland and District League will continue coaching and training throughout the summer

Beginners are welcome at the Seaburn Centre on Mondays (5.15-6.45pm), with improvers from 6.45-8.15pm.

There is junior coaching for beginners and improvers at the Sandhill Centre on Fridays (5.15-7pm), with open play and practice available to all from 7-9pm. Bats and balls can be provided.

Further information from Mike Wilson on 529 2212.