Wandsworth & District Table Tennis League
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Tournament time again!
As Easter approaches it’s time again for the annual Wandsworth & District Table Tennis League closed tournament. This year’s championships will see a new champion as reigning champion Leo Veinsreider has not competed in the league this season, so favourites are likely to be Cain Fagan, Andy Sanders, Lucas Tojal Sierra, Adeel Ahmed and Waqar Hussain. There are 3 separate events, Open, Ratings and Veterans. The aim is to run the 3 sessions to a finish without having a separate finals night but as always it depends upon how the events run.  The first session takes place on Wednesday 4th April for the “Ratings” singles (formerly the “Handicap” singles) the event is run in groups of 3 or more players, and players are rated by their playing standard. As example a “0” rating playing against a “4” rating means the “4” rating would start each game 4-0 up in an 11 up game. If the score reaches 10-10 the next point would be sudden death so whoever wins it wins the game. On Friday 6th April is the Open Singles and Doubles, singles are in groups but the doubles event is straight knockout. Monday 9th April is the Veterans Singles for players over 40 years old, again played in groups. The cost is £3 for the Veterans, £3 for the Ratings and £6 for the Open (including doubles), if you enter all 3 events there is a discounted price of £10. Juniors are half price. Closing date for entry is Thursday 29th March 2018 so hurry! you can pay in cash directly to either Ismai'l Miller at York Gardens or John Llewellyn at St Pauls, also by cheque made payable to Paul Couper. To qualify you need to have played 50% or more of available matches.
Wednesday 4th April Ratings Singles
Friday 6th April Open Singles/Doubles
Monday 9th April Veterans Singles
TBC Finals Night Wednesday 11th April

Wilton living the dream as they beat York Gardens “A” 8-2   
Richard Evans led Wilton to their best ever victory in the Wandsworth league beating the mighty York Gardens “A” 8-2. Richard was unbeaten against the York trio of Joe Leone, Rob Campbell and Dave Wareham. His team mates Erik Jeanpierre and Emiliano Laghi also both put in great performances wining two each, for York Gardens Rob Campbell and Joe Leone both won one each.  Meanwhile York Gardens “B” showed their strength by beating Vale “A” 7-3.  York’s Lucas Tojal Sierra again led the way maintaining his unbeaten run,  Waqar Hussain won 2 and Linford Akoto won 1 with another good win over Wojet Czubek. For Vale Andy sanders had two good wins including beating Waqar Hussain to move back to the top of the players averages, Doug Taucher won 1 beating Linford Akoto.  The XXIV Club “A” vs St Pauls “B” match was postponed as XXIV Club are struggling to get players out with Peter Sinclair injured and Adeel Ahmed away.  Click here to see league tables

It’s looking like a showdown between Vale “B” and
York Gardens “C” to decide the title.
Despite York Gardens “C”’s advantage of having a game in hand, (and believe me it’s a considerable advantage to have) Vale “B” are level  on points with York Gardens “C” with 68 apiece.   It could come down to the showdown between the two teams as to who ends up as champions of division two this season.   Vale “B” managed a convincing 9-1 victory over XXIV Club “B” with both Tom Coady and Peter Fenner going unbeaten and Don Stevens winning two. Peter Klocek was XXIV Club’s only winner, both Chris Chikwendu and Tim Cook losing out.  XXIV Club “C” were gifted a walk over by York Gardens “D” as they had difficulty on the night to get a team out. York Gardens “C” maintained their perfect record against St Pauls “D” winning 10-0, the squad for York Gardens was  the usual line up of Clive Hall, Mark Lewis and Sajid Patel.  For St Pauls it was Joseph Guven, Daniel Ladja and the welcome return of Paul Dracup who is coming back to play after heart surgery.  Click here to see league tables

Vale "A" and York Gardens "A" book their places in the President's Cup Final, while St Pauls "A" take on York Gardens "B" in the Chairman's Cup final
Vale "A" fought off a fierce challenge from York "B" to win their semi final 5-4 and clinch their place in the President's Cup Final. Joining them in the final are York "A" who dominated the other semi final against St Pauls "B" winning 8-1. The final is due to be held at St Pauls on Thursday 29th March. In the Chairman's Cup York "B" put in an amazing performance to beat XXIV Club "A" 5-4 in the first semi final thanks to an unbeaten run from Yasar Ahmed. In the semi final match between St Pauls "A" and Vale "A" was a surprise 5-1 victory over Vale. The final is due to be held at St Pauls on Thursday 19th April. Click here to see Cup draws and results

Goodbye to Ian McCarthy, the legend of the Wandsworth League retires after 50 years!
The expression “legend” is bandied about quite often these days but in the case of Ian McCarthy it rings true. He has an amazing 50 years of organising table tennis in South London behind him and managed to keep the Wandsworth & District Table Tennis League alive through some of the most difficult times the sport has seen. His decision to retire from running the league means he will cut back a little on travel as Ian currently lives over 95 miles away from the league! He has held the role of Chairman, General Secretary, Match Secretary, Tournament Organiser and Cup Competitions organiser over the years. He has actually been a member of the league since the mid 1950’s when he started playing in it as a teenager. He has successfully run many different clubs and teams and today is still running St Pauls TTC, even though he moved to Kent some years ago he still does a 190 mile round trip to Wimbledon every week.  On the organising league committee side his first involvement was in 1967 when he became the General Secretary of the league, then almost twenty years later in 1986 he took over as Chairman of the league after Keith Hurlock retired. In 1987 he organised the closed championships and continued to do so until 2012 when Mike Loveder took over. In addition to all this he ran the 2 cup competitions as well. John Llewellyn took over Ian’s various roles in May this year and said “Ian’s contribution to the league is immeasurable and quite frankly I doubt that the league would have survived without Ian being there to keep it going, to say we are going to miss him is a huge understatement”.

The sad passing of Doreen Draper, a true supporter of the league
It is with very great sadness I have to report the passing of the lovely Doreen Draper, the wife of Wandsworth league legend Tom Draper. For so many years Doreen was the secretary of York Gardens and kept things running smoothly behind the scenes. A truly lovely lady she leaves behind daughters Brenda and Valerie, and of course her husband for over 60 years, Tom. Our deepest and heart felt sympathies go out to all the family and friends.
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