After a long day of table tennis a week earlier, the finals of the Closed Championships have been played on Sunday 24th April. Many congratulations to all the winners (& runners-ups).
Results & videos are as below:-
Drawn Doubles - Tony Smith & Paul Doolan vs Ron Buckley & Mike McNulty
The final of this match was going to be played on the day of the earlier rounds last week. This was to be contested by Tony Smith & Paul Doolan vs Ron Buckley & Mike McNulty. However, just before the game started Tony had to withdraw with a back injury, hence Ron & Mike are the winners of this match. Unfortunate circumstances but congratulations to all who made the final.
Vets Singles - Tony Smith vs Mike McNulty -
The over 40's tournament for those of us in our prime :) saw Mike McNulty taking on Tony Smith in the first match of the evening. This proved to be a good, intriguing demonstration of attacking vs (mostly) defensive table tennis. A great start from Mike saw him take the first game to go into the lead. Tony took the next game to level things up and take us into a decider. Some fantastic rallies followed but Tony pulled ahead and stayed there to take the win 2-1.
Handicap Singles - Tony Smith vs Paul Doolan -
This match saw Tony Smith playing unknown quantity Paul Doolan who has recently returned back after having over a decade off from playing table tennis. With Paul starting on +12 and Tony on -5 it was always going to be tough for Tony to catch up. Despite some great play on both sides this proved to be the case and Paul took the 1-game victory 21-14.
Open Doubles - Tony Smith & Tony Bates vs Darren Morgan & Matt Coups -
The two Tonys, Smith & Bates were pre-match favourites vs Darren Morgan & Matt Coups and the result was looking inevitable when they went 2-0 up. However, Darren & Matt rallied and pulled it back to 2-2.
With all to play for the Tonys thundered into an 8-3 then 9-5 lead and the match was looking over. However, once again Darren & Matt came back at them to take it into deuce in this final game. Match points were saved either way until Darren & Matt kept their heads to upset the odds and take the win 14-12 for a stunning 3-2 victory in what was a fantastic close end to the match.
Open Singles - Tony Bates vs Mike McNulty -
In the final match of the evening, with one player having antiloop on his bat and the other having pimples it was always going to be a long, gruelling, hard-fought battle. Tony took a fine 1-0 and 2-1 lead but Mike battled back well twice to ensure there was a last game decider. It was neck and neck all the way and Mike McNulty held his nerve to finally win 3-2 in a very close match.