Young British squad for Spanish Open

The British Para Table Tennis Team is taking a squad of 10 Pathway and Development players to the 2017 PTT Spanish Open Ciutat del Prat and Junior (U23) Tournament taking place in El Prat de Llobregat from June 7-11.

The full squad is:

Factor 20 Tournament:
Marc Bonnar – Class 1 (Ingleby, Middlesborough)
Lucie Bouron – Class 3 (Bracknell)
Lee Wilkinson – Class 7 (Evesham)

Factor 20 and Junior Tournaments:
Alex Bland – Class 7 (Rotherham)
Daniel Bullen – Class 5 (St Neots)
Craig Allen – Class 9 (Bromsgrove)
Conor McAdam – Class 6 (Dundonald)
Declan Tobin – Class 8 (Airdie)
Elliot Medland – Class 10 (Clydebank)

Junior Tournament:
Euan McLaughlin – Class 8 (Glasgow)

Draw made for World Team Championships

The draw has been made for the inaugural World Team Championships taking place in Slovakia from May 17-20.

World Team Champs logoThe British Para Table Tennis Team is competing in four events – men’s class 1, men’s class 6, men’s class 8 and women’s class 4-5.

Men’s class 1 and women’s class 4-5 are both round-robin events with five teams in each. Paul Davies and Tom Matthews begin at 16:00 tomorrow with a match against the hosts Slovakia while Sue Gilroy and Megan Shackleton also take on Slovakia at 14:15.

In men’s class 6, Paul Karabardak, Martin Perry and David Wetherill have been drawn in a group with European champions Denmark, Chile and Slovakia and play their first match at 14:15 tomorrow against the host nation.

In men’s class 8, Aaron McKibbin, Billy Shilton and Ross Wilson are in a group with Paralympic silver medallists Sweden, Chinese Taipei and Australia. They start with a match against Australia at 09:00 tomorrow.

All times are local – one hour ahead of the UK.

For full details of the draw go to:
http://www.so-tabletennis.com/images/data_Team_16_5_2017.pdf

Great start to team competition for British team in Slovenia

With the singles event complete the team competition at the PTT Slovenia Open got underway this afternoon and Britain made a good start in men’s class 8 with a win for GBR2 over a combined team from Argentina and Canada. Will Bayley and Billy Shilton won the doubles 3-0 and Shilton then completed a 2-0 win with a 3-0 win in the singles against Curtis Caron from Canada. In their second match against Belgium Bayley and Shilton came back from 2-0 down to win the doubles 12-10 in the fifth and 18 year old Shilton then played a superb match against Marc Ledoux to beat the World number ten 11-8 in the fifth and give his team a 2-0 win.

GBR1 also made a winning start in men’s class 8 against Australia. Aaron McKibbin and Ross Wilson combined to win the doubles and Wilson then defeated Nathan Pellissier 3-0 in the first singles match for a 2-0 win. In their second match they faced Netherlands1 and after a 3-1 win in the doubles Wilson came through a great battle against the class 7 European champion Jean-paul Montanus 11-8 in the fifth to secure a 2-0 win.

In men’s class 5 Jack Hunter-Spivey and team partner Tommy Urhaug began with 2-0 win against Argentina. Hunter-Spivey and Urhaug won the doubles and Hunter-Spivey defeated Elias Romero 3-0 in the first singles.

Fliss Pickard and her fellow class 6 Polish team partner Katarzyna Marszal began their women’s class 6-7 team campaign against a combined team of class 7 players from Turkey, The Netherlands and Canada. Pickard and Marszal lost the doubles to Kubra Korkut from Turkey and Kelly Van Zon of The Netherlands and when Marszal beat the Canadian Stephanie Chan 3-2 to level at 1-1 Pickard had to take on Van Zon in the deciding singles. She played really well and pushed the class 7 World, Paralympic and European champion all the way despite a 3-1 loss.

Perry proud to be part of Performance Squad

Paisley table tennis star Martin Perry is heading to Slovenia next week with the British team to compete in his first international tournament since his promotion to the British Para Table Tennis Team Performance Squad.

Martin PerryThe 22 year old, who won the class 6 title at the BPTT National Championships earlier this month, was introduced to table tennis in 2011 by Terry McLernon MBE at Drumchapel TT Club and joined the British Pathway Squad in 2013. He has made great progress since moving to Sheffield 18 months ago to train full time with the British team, winning the US Open in December last year and taking bronze in the Italian Open last month – his first singles medal in a factor 40 tournament.

“It was a great feeling to get to the semi-finals in Italy and I had good wins along the way,” he said. “I’m looking forward to Slovenia because I love the tournament and I’ve got the opportunity again to beat players who are ranked above me and I want to prove to myself more than anyone else that I am a top player and can maintain a high level of form.

“It is great to say that you are part of the Performance Squad but I don’t think it feels any different because I have been training with the squad for the past 18 months now so it is more of an official title than anything else. I feel that I have been working as hard as I should be every day and working in the right way to improve and that has shown in my results and my world ranking.

martin-perry-france-3“Training in Sheffield over the last 18 months is one of the key factors that has helped me improve so quickly. I’ve always trained hard and I think that is one of my key qualities as a player but training hard and winning matches is different so the experience of the players and the coaches in Sheffield has helped me to learn how to grind out matches when you are maybe not feeling your best, which we all have to do. My game technically has improved in leaps and bounds since training here and that is to be expected because training day in and day out with World, Paralympic and European champions I’d be ashamed of myself if I didn’t improve.”

British Para Table Tennis Non Executive Directors – 2 Vacancies

BRITISH  PARA TABLE TENNIS

NON- EXECUTIVE DIRECTORS-  2 VACANCIES

British Para Table Tennis ( BPTT) is the National Governing Body for elite Para Table Tennis as recognised by UK Sport which funds its World Class Programme.  3 medals -including 2 gold   by  Will Bayley MBE  and Rob Davies MBE  – were achieved at the Rio 2016 Paralympic  Games ranking Great Britain as 4th equal in the medals table for Para Table Tennis and now  we look  forward  to Tokyo  2020 and onwards to 2024. BPTT runs a domestic competitions programme  for its members  as well as competing  internationally; it works with the Home Nations Table Tennis Associations  and  National  Disability  Sports Organisations to influence and develop para table tennis within the UK and internationally. It has committed to the Code for Sports Governance.

BPTT is a company limited by guarantee as well as a registered  charity.  Following a change in Articles, it wishes to appoint 2 further Non- Executive  Directors either from the membership or as independents.

The Board wishes to appoint Directors who as individuals have the experience, interest, knowledge and  skills to complement and improve the skills set already in place through the 5 current Board members led by the Chairman -Mrs Karen Tonge MBE.

Expertise in Commercial , Marketing and  Income Generation as well as Finance and Legal would be particularly advantageous  as would be an  understanding of  High Performance Sport.

All Board  Directors should bring their experience from employment and/or voluntary activity to benefit BPTT and the ability to listen carefully, analyse clearly,question constructively and behave  collectively and with integrity  would  be important assets. They will need to understand and  appreciate the interests of all stakeholders.

The Board is immediately responsible for Strategy, Finance , Governance as well as Performance and Representation; it has overall scrutiny  of all BPTT activities including its sub -committees.  Experience and understanding of these aspects will be helpful.

Board Directors  would be

–     volunteers who are paid appropriate travel and subsistence expenses.

  • appointed for a 4 year term with eligibility for a further  4 year term .
  • expected to attend weekday Board meetings which  are currently held in Sheffield where the Performance team is based
  • able and willing to  commit  5 days  pa  for Board meetings, AGM and national events plus extra  time as needed for any  other activity or representation on behalf of BPTT.

If you would welcome the opportunity to work with BPTT and in para sport, please forward a brief CV and personal statement  to   Mike  Smith    Company Secretary  BPTT  preferably by email  to mike.gr.smith@btinternet.com   or to 207 Glenfield Road Leicester LE3 6DL  . He would be happy to deal with any informal enquiries.

     Closing date  for applications               Sunday        May 7   2017 

    Interviews will be held in Sheffield on Wednesday May 31 2017

BPTT welcomes applications from all suitably qualified persons regardless of race, gender, disability, religion/belief, sexual orientation or age

Wilson and Hunter-Spivey take Open titles at National Championships

Ross Wilson and Jack Hunter-Spivey have won the Open singles titles in the standing and wheelchair categories respectively at the 2017 British Para Table Tennis Championships in Grantham. Sue Gilroy claimed her 22nd National title in the Ladies Open wheelchair class and Paralympic champion Will Bayley combined with 18 year old Billy Shilton to take the Open standing doubles.

Ross Wilson BPTT NationalsWilson also took the class 8 singles title, beating Shilton in the semi-final and his GB team partner Aaron McKibbin in the final. In the final of the Open singles he beat the class 10 singles champion Kim Daybell 3-1 to claim the National title for the second time in his career.

“It is really nice to see the standard going up in the Nationals each year,” said Wilson. “I played both Billy in the semi and Aaron in the final and they are both great players and I love the fact that we are improving together as a team. Kim beat me in the final last year so we’ve had a few jokes in training but it is all good fun and I’m really happy to be champion. I’m training more on the table now and it is good for me to know that I am doing the right things in training and that is helping me get the results.”

Hunter-Spivey completed a hat-trick of titles with the class 5 singles and the wheelchair doubles.

Jack Hunter-Spivey BPTT Nationals“It is a great feeling,” said the 21 year old from Liverpool. “I’ve been on top for five years now and it gets tougher every year. The junior players are getting a lot better and it’s been strong competition this year. I’m really proud to be British champion and I don’t take it for granted – it is nice to be the best in Britain but everyone else is fighting for it as well so I’ve got to be on my game all the time.”

Hunter-Spivey was partnered in the doubles by Pathway athlete Dan Bullen who was also runner-up in the class 5 singles.

“It was a pleasure to play with Jack in the doubles,” said Bullen. “It is the first time we’ve played together and we worked really well so hopefully we can look forward to playing together more in the future.”

Gilroy has dominated the women’s wheelchair events at the Nationals for more than two decades and also won the class 4 singles as well as taking silver in the Open wheelchair singles, losing in the final to Hunter-Spivey.

“There is still work to be done but I played really well this weekend,” said Gilroy. “To win 22 National titles is something I’m really proud of and I don’t think that is something anyone else will ever do.”

Martin Perry BPTT NationalsMartin Perry celebrated his promotion last week to the British Performance Squad by taking the class 6 singles title, beating the European bronze medallist and three time Paralympian David Wetherill 3-2 in a thrilling final.

“To beat someone like Dave who is top five in the world is a fantastic result for me,” said Perry, who also received the Player of the Tournament Award. “It was a really good match and we both played really good table tennis. It means an awful lot to me to be National champion. I’ve been Scottish champion a few times and that means a lot to me but to say that I am British champion as well is a fantastic feeling.”

Bayley came through the men’s class 7 singles without dropping a set but was more delighted to win the Open doubles. He and Shilton beat Daybell and class 9 singles champion Ashley Facey Thompson in the semi-finals and then came from 2-0 against Wilson and McKibbin to take the match 11-7 in the fifth.

Will Bayley & Billy Shilton BPTT Nationals“It was one of the best wins I’ve had really because it was unexpected,” said Bayley. “We had a really difficult draw so I thought we were up against it and we did really well to win it. To come from 2-0 down against players as good as Ross and Aaron was an amazing win for us.”

“I lost my focus a bit at the start of the match,” admitted Shilton, “but we changed tactics a bit and played the perfect game in the last three sets. Will is such a top player and you’ve got to step up your game when you play with him so I’m really happy we won.”

Rob Davies BPTT NationalsParalympic champion Rob Davies retained his class 1-2 singles title but was pushed all the way by his GB team mate Tom Matthews in the decisive match in the round-robin event. Davies eventually took the match against his fellow Welshman 13-11 in the fifth.

“It’s nice to be British champion again and good to keep Tom down just for one more year,” said a relieved Davies. “It is always nice to win but it was more of a learning experience for me to see what I need to work on ready for the Slovenia Open next month. I’m reasonably pleased with the way I’m playing – I’ve got three weeks of training to go yet so I’ve got to keep improving now.”

Also among the winners were Kevin Plowman (Class 3), Adam Thompson (Class 11), Fliss Pickard (Ladies Open Standing), Lochlan O’Higgins (Junior Wheelchair and Wheelchair Open B), Jack Stockdale (Junior Standing), Euan McLaughlin (Standing Open B), Dylan Tynan (Standing Open C) and Harry Fairchild (Downs Syndrome Class). Junior Player of the Tournament went to Shae Thakker.

Will Bayley MBE on BBC Question of Sport 22nd March 2017

qoswillTonight our very own Will Bayley MBE who won the class 7 Gold Medal at the Rio Paralympics last year will appear on BBC Question of Sport.

 

 

Will joins the infamous team captain Phil Tufnell (Tuffers) who is a favorite on the show plus Clinton Morrison a former professional footballer for Mickleover Sports.

Tune in tonight (Wednesday 22nd March 2017) on BBC1 at 23:15 for fun and games with the sports professionals hosted by Sue Barker.

 

GB players strike gold in RITTO Junior Open

Conor McAdam, Craig Allen and Shae Thakker all claimed gold today in the Junior Open in Romania and there were two further medals for the GB Pathway squad as Lawrence John took silver and Dan Bullen bronze.

McAdam won all three of his matches in the round robin men’s class 6 singles, securing the gold with an impressive 3-0 win in his final match against the German Thilo Sonnenschein. Thakker also came through the round robin men’s class 10 singles undefeated and his narrow 3-2 win against GB team mate Lawrence John (14-12 in the fifth) proved to be the decisive match as John went on to take the silver.

Allen lost his second match in the men’s class 9 singles to the German Laurenz Fehling 3-2 but with wins against Vladislav Balobanov from Russia and Elias Monden from Germany he took the gold on countback.

Bullen topped his group in the men’s class 2-5 singles with three wins from three before losing a very close semi-final to Sebastian Brandal from Norway 12-10 in the fifth.

Matthews and Shilton selected for Performance Squad

European medalists Tom Matthews and Billy Shilton have been named in the British Para Table Tennis Performance squad for 2017.

Tom Matthews Slovenia medalMatthews, 24, joined the British Pathway squad in 2013 and partnered Paralympic champion and fellow Welshman Rob Davies to win the men’s class 1 European team title in 2015, having also taken bronze in the singles event. After narrowly missing out on qualification for Rio 2016 he missed most of last year after breaking his leg in the spring but returned in December to take gold in the US Open, beating the Korean World number five and Rio bronze medalist KiWon Nam in the final.

Shilton, 18, also joined the Pathway squad in 2013 and made rapid progress to take bronze in the men’s class 7 singles and silver in the men’s class 7 teams at the European Championships in 2015. The Gloucestershire teenager missed out on Paralympic qualification after being reclassified as a class 8 athlete but went to Rio as part of ParalympicsGB’s Paralympic Inspiration Programme.

“Both Tom and Billy have been selected for the Performance Squad because of the potential they have shown over the last two years,” said BPTT Performance Director Gorazd Vecko.

“Tom just missed qualification for Rio and then lost eight months away from the table following an accident but before that he had beaten top 10 players in the world and was starting to beat top five players in the world. His performance in winning gold in Las Vegas in December showed that he will soon become a World top 10 athlete.  I believe that Tom will be a future medalist for GB in major championships and he is a great prospect for Tokyo 2020.

Billy Shilton Vejle 2015 3“Billy has been part of the programme now for the last four years and he has shown consistent improvement. He moved to Sheffield last year, which was the first big step for him towards joining the Performance squad, and now he has shown that he is a performance athlete and he understands what he needs to do to be a future medalist at the major competitions.  He also played really well in the US Open at the end of last year and it is looking strong for the programme that we can take players from the Pathway squad to the Performance squad and this is how it should work.”

The full BPTT Performance Squad for 2017 is:

Will Bayley MBE (class 7) – Tunbridge Wells/Sheffield
Paul Davies (class 1) – North Cornelly
Rob Davies MBE (class 1) – Brecon
Kim Daybell (class 10) – Leeds/Sheffield
Ashley Facey Thompson (class 9) – London
Sue Gilroy MBE (class 4) – Barnsley
Jack Hunter-Spivey (class 5) – Liverpool/Sheffield
Paul Karabardak (class 6) – Swansea
Tom Matthews (class 1) – Aberdare
Aaron McKibbin (class 8) – London/Sheffield
Megan Shackleton (class 4) – Todmorden
Billy Shilton (class 8) – Stonehouse/Sheffield
David Wetherill (class 6) – Torpoint
Ross Wilson (class 8) – Minster/Sheffield