GB Team – Megan Shackleton

mshackletonbio
Date and place of birth: 21/03/1999, Halifax
Home town: Todmorden
Lives: Todmorden
Family: mum Jayne, step-dad Anthony, sister Lois
TT Class: 4
Current world ranking: 14
International debut: 2013, Belgium 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

 

 

Megan’s story:
Megan joined the GB Pathway Squad in 2013 and was selected for the Performance Squad in April 2014. A machinery related accident at the age of nine resulted in a fractured spine but the determination she showed in adapting to life in a wheelchair is also driving her to achieve success in her chosen sport.

“I had swum competitively from the age of five and played tennis,” she says, “so I’ve always enjoyed sport. I first started playing table tennis at the age of 12 after I attended a Playground to Podium event in Leeds, where I met my coach Shaun Alvey. He persuaded me to come along to his club Albert Premier TTC regularly and I soon fell in love with the sport.”

After her accident Megan also tried wheelchair basketball and returned to the swimming pool, winning a number of medals at national level, but she is now focusing on table tennis. “I’ve always liked racket sports,” she explains, “and I like table tennis because it is more about your ability.”

Megan made an impressive international debut in October 2013 in the Belgium Open, reaching the quarter-finals of the class 4 singles event. “I’ve wanted to represent GB since I was very young so it was a dream come true,” she said. In March 2014 she won her first international medal, partnering Sue Gilroy and Sweden’s Anna-Carin Ahlquist to a silver medal in the women’s class 4-5 team event at the Lignano Master Open in Italy and she went on to win her first individual medal in Romania with a bronze in the women’s class 4-5 singles. She finished the season on a high by taking gold in the women’s class 4-5 singles and team events at the Cote d’Azur International to confirm her potential.

“I’m really happy and the hard work in training is paying off,” said Megan. “Knowing that I’ve won two gold medals is going to give me a lot of confidence – I played consistently through the tournament in France and hopefully I can continue to do that next season. There’s still a lot of room for improvement.”

In 2015 Megan started the season by taking gold in the Hungarian Open. She continued to progress while also studying for her GCSEs and took two silver medals in the Czech Open before making her major championship debut in the European Championships in Denmark where she took a bronze medal in the women’s class 4-5 team event with four time Paralympian Sue Gilroy.

“I’m so happy to come away with a medal at my first major championships,” said Megan. “It means a lot to me – I always come out to tournaments hoping to win things. I’ve gained a lot of experience through the pressure of the situations I’m in and I think I’ve handled it quite well.”

In 2016 Megan took medals in Italy and Romania and while Rio came too soon for her she is now focused on qualification for Tokyo in 2020.

 “I’ve gained a lot of experience this year from watching the other players preparing for a Paralympic Games,” she said. “I’m glad to have been involved in the process of a qualification year so I know what it is about and I think that will give me a good advantage with the qualification process for Tokyo.”

GB Pathway Squad coach Shaun Marples is in no doubt that Megan has the talent to succeed at the highest level. “Megan has made fantastic progress over the short period of time she has been playing,” says Shaun. “She has an attacking style, hits the ball strong over the table and with her attitude and dedication to the sport she has the potential to make it to the top in her class.”

A sixth form pupil at Todmorden High School, Megan is also receiving full support from her school to follow her dream of a table tennis career.  “My school is very supportive,” she says, “and will give me work when I am away or if I need to catch up they’ll give me an hour after school to help me if I need it. Sport means a lot to me because it helps you to become the best that you can be.”

Take 5 with Megan:
Most admired sportsman/woman – Tom Daley

Place in the world you would most like to visit – Australia

Three famous people (alive or dead) you would like to have a drink with – Barack Obama, Jennifer Lawrence and Bear Grylls

What’s on your ipod – general chart stuff

If you had to appear in a reality TV programme which one would it be – Big Brother

and finally – Megan’s favourite sport apart from table tennis is tennis.

2017 Results:
World Team Championships, Slovakia – bronze, women’s class 4-5
Slovenia Open – bronze, women’s teams (class 4-5); QF, women’s singles (class 4-5)

2016 Results:
Romania Open – bronze, women’s singles (class 4-5); bronze, women’s teams (class 3-5)
Slovenia Open – bronze, women’s teams (class 4); group stages, women’s singles (class 4)
Lignano Master Open, Italy – bronze, women’s teams (class 4-5); group stages, women’s singles (class 4-5)

2015 Results:
European Championships, Vejle, Denmark – bronze, women’s teams (class 4-5); group stages, women’s singles (class 4-5)
Czech Open – silver, women’s singles (class 4-5); silver, women’s teams (class 4-5)
Bayreuth Open, Germany – bronze, women’s teams (class 4); group stages, women’s singles (class 4)
Slovenia Open – silver, women’s teams (class 4); group stages, women’s singles (class 4)
Lignano Master Open, Italy – group stages, women’s singles (class 4-5); 4th women’s teams (class 4-5)
Hungarian Open – gold, women’s singles (class 4-5); silver, women’s teams (class 1-5)

2014 Results:
Cote d’Azur International, France – gold, women’s singles (class 4-5); gold, women’s teams (class 4-5)
Romania International Open – bronze, women’s singles (class 2-5)
Lignano Master Open, Italy – silver, women’s teams (class 4-5); group stages, women’s singles (class 4-5)
National Championships – Winner, Junior Class 1-5 singles; Junior Player of the Tournament

Career Highlights:
2017: World Team Championships, Slovakia – bronze, women’s class 4-5
2015: European Championships, Vejle, Denmark – bronze, women’s teams (class 4-5)
Czech Open – silver, women’s singles (class 4-5); silver, women’s teams (class 4-5)
Bayreuth Open, Germany – bronze, women’s teams (class 4)
Slovenia Open – silver, women’s teams (class 4)
Hungarian Open – gold, women’s singles (class 4-5); silver, women’s teams (class 1-5)
2014: Cote d’Azur International, France – gold, women’s singles (class 4-5); gold, women’s teams (class 4-5)
Romania International Open – bronze, women’s singles (class 2-5)
Lignano Master Open, Italy – silver, women’s teams (class 4-5)
National Championships – Winner, Junior Class 1-5 singles; Junior Player of the Tournament

Further results are available at: http://www.ipttc.org/players/women/megan_shackleton/index.htm