GB Team – David Wetherill

dwetherillbio
Date and place of birth: 22/12/1989, Plymouth
Home town: Torpoint
Lives: Torpoint/Sheffield
Family: Parents Liz and Paul, brother Gareth and sister Abigail
TT Class: 6
Current world ranking: 5
TT Style: right-handed attacking
International debut: 2005, Norwegian Open

6 team medals in Germany - 1 gold, 2 silver and 3 bronze: bttad.org/davies-davies-……-gold-in-germany/ 🥇🥈🥉 @TNLUKtwitter.com/i/web/status/8…

About a week ago from GB Para Table Tennis's Twitter via Twitter Web Client

David’s story

David started playing table tennis at the age of 10 at his local club Crafthole, where his father coached, and soon progressed to the Plymouth League with Woolwell TTC. Having a father and an older brother who played spurred him on and he immediately fell in love with the speed and intensity of the game. “Table tennis is a sport that I’ve loved ever since I first picked up a bat,” says David. “I was always trying to beat my dad and my brother in the first few years. Eventually I got there, and they haven’t beaten me since.”

David made his international debut in 2005 and has represented ParalympicsGB in Beijing 2008, London 2012 and Rio 2016. In Beijing he beat the home favourite and former champion in the first round on his way to reaching the last eight and his spectacular diving shot against his German opponent in London 2012 became a YouTube sensation although he went on to lose the match.

Having reached the semi-finals in the European Championships in 2011, David was hoping to medal at the Europeans in 2013 but struggled to find his form in Italy and did not progress to the knockout stages.  However, he finished the season on a positive note by taking gold in the class 6 singles at the Belgium Open.

“It was a bit up and down,” he says of his form in 2013. “I did struggle after London with the disappointment of my performance there and I had a few niggling injuries at the start of the year but I had some good results, reached two finals and beat the Paralympic champion three times so that was encouraging.”

David started 2014 by winning the class 6 National title and followed that with medals in Italy, Slovenia and Slovakia. After taking time away from international competition to work on improvements to his game he returned in June 2015 at the Romania Open where he took gold in both singles and team events. He followed this with medals in Thailand and Korea and was selected for the European Championships in Denmark where he produced some great performances to take bronze in the singles and silver in the team event with Paul Karabardak.

David won singles medals in Italy and Slovakia in 2016 and reached the quarter-finals of the men’s class 6 singles in the Paralympic Games in Rio, losing 3-2 to the Spanish World number one Alvaro Valera after holding a match point.

“I did everything I could,” he said afterwards. “I’ve really struggled this week to find my feeling for the ball and it clicked into gear mentally today. I was so on it and I feel that I played him tactically perfect. The match point was maybe playing on my mind a bit in the fourth – it is impossible not to have it in the back of your mind as you feel it is a wasted opportunity. On another day I could have won that point and I’d be in the semi-finals but I can be proud of how I played today.”

Diagnosed at birth with multiple epiphyseal dysplasia, which affects the growing ends of the bones, David was also affected by Fallows tetralogy, a congenital heart defect, and had open heart surgery as a baby. Table tennis has provided him with an outlet for his competitive spirit and also helped him to overcome the physical problems caused by his condition.

“Table tennis is a sport I can play without too many limitations,” he explains, “but it is something I can compete at alongside able-bodied people. It was good for rehabilitation from all the operations I had as a child and now it keeps me active and driven to stay fit and healthy. The main thing is that it has given me such a great opportunity to achieve something massive in life – without this, those tough times would have been a lot harder for sure.”

Take 5 with David:

Most admired sportsman – Gianfranco Zola

Three famous people you would like to have a drink with – Emma Watson, Jose Mourinho, Andy Murray

Person who has influenced you most – my dad for inspiring me to play table tennis and my mum for helping me through thick and thin

Sporting event you would most like a ticket for – Wimbledon

Place in the world you would most like to visit – Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro

and finally – David has a degree in biological chemistry from Sheffield University

2017 Results
World Team Championships, Slovakia – bronze, men’s class 6
Slovenia Open – bronze, men’s singles (class 6)
Lignano Master Open, Italy – bronze, men’s singles (class 6)

2016 Results
Paralympic Games, Rio de Janeiro – QF, men’s singles (class 6)
Slovakia Open – silver, men’s singles (class 6); silver, men’s teams (class 6)
Slovenia Open – QF, men’s singles (class 6)
Lignano Master Open, Italy – bronze, men’s singles (class 6); silver, men’s teams (class 6)

2015 Results:
European Championships, Vejle, Denmark – bronze, men’s singles (class 6); silver, men’s teams (class 6)
Korea Open – bronze, men’s singles (class 6); silver, men’s teams (class 6)
Thailand Open – bronze, men’s singles (class 6); silver, men’s teams (class 7)
Romania Open – gold, men’s singles (class 6); gold, men’s teams (class 6)

2014 Results:
Slovakia Open – silver, men’s teams (class 6); bronze, men’s singles (class 6)
Slovenia Open – gold, men’s teams (class 6); bronze, men’s singles (class 6)
Lignano Master Open, Italy – silver, men’s singles (class 6); group stages, men’s teams (class 6-7)
National Championships – winner, singles (mixed class 6)

Career Highlights:
2017: World Team Championships, Slovakia – bronze, men’s class 6
2016: Paralympic Games, Rio de Janeiro – QF, men’s singles (class 6)
2015: European Championships, Vejle, Denmark – bronze, men’s singles (class 6); silver, men’s teams (class 6)
Romania Open – gold, men’s singles (class 6); gold, men’s teams (class 6)
2014: Slovenia Open – gold, men’s teams (class 6); bronze, men’s singles (class 6)
Lignano Master Open, Italy – silver, men’s singles (class 6
2013: Belgium Open – gold, men’s singles (class 6); bronze, men’s teams (class 6-7)
Korea Open – silver, men’s singles (class 6); bronze, men’s teams (class 6-7)
Bayreuth Open, Germany – gold, men’s teams (class 6)
2012: French Open – gold, men’s teams (class 6); silver, men’s singles (class 6)
Slovenian Open – gold, men’s teams (class 6)
Slovakian Open – gold, men’s teams (class 6); bronze, men’s singles
2009: Slovenian Open – gold, men’s singles (class 6)
2007: US Open – gold, men’s singles (class 6); gold, men’s teams (class 6)

Further results available at: http://www.ipttc.org/players/men/david_wetherill/index.htm