The Hastings & District Table Tennis Association held their annual Veterans Closed Tournament at the Bexhill Youth & Community Centre where Hollington Academy players featured prominently. Paul Barry (Hollington Academy) took the blue riband over-40s Mixed Singles event for the third consecutive year, beating the previous winner, Dave Butler of Saints, 11-8, 11-2, 11-8, 11-6 in the final, which was the only event played as a best of seven games.
The disappointingly low number of entries almost certainly reflects the continuing excellence of the top players in this event.
The over-50s saw holder Tony Catt (Hollington Academy) face teammate Robin Gibbs in the final. Gibbs, who missed last season with injury had been runner-up in the two previous years but came out on top, winning 9-11, 11-7, 11-4, 11-9.
At the semi-final stage, Gibbs beat Kevin Rowe (Tackleway) and Catt had accounted for Nick Standen (Hollington Academy).
Once again, the largest entry came in the over-60s category with three groups involved. Bob Lowe (Monarchs) took the title for the fourth time, beating the holder, Roy Funnell (Tackleway) 13-11, 4-11, 11-9, 11-6 in the final. Lowe beat Bexhill’s Pam Winter at the semi-final stage, while Funnell survived a family battle with brother and teammate Mike Funnell.
The over-70s singles was played as a round-robin group of five players, but what turned out to effectively be the final provided the closest finish of all of the events.
Former Over 60s winner Brian Busbridge (Bexhill) took the title, defeating Martin Richards (Bexhill), who won the event in 2016, 11-9, 9-11, 7-11, 11-4, 12-10.
Eastbourne Over 70s winner Brian Beaney (Bexhill) finished third.
Paul Barry and Nick Standen took the Doubles title for the third time in four years with a five-game win over Robin Gibbs and Tony Catt.
The tournament was organised by Mike Funnell, assisted by Jamie Martin.
Pictures of winners and runners-up may be found via the Gallery menu.