As expected, the main events in this year's Bury St Edmunds Table Tennis Closed Championships played at King Edward School on 24th March 2013 were far from predictable, with several classic matches, but they still featured the top seeded players.
Three of the men's quarter final games totally captured the attention of the crowd, Firstly Andy Dosher overcame Suffolk's top Junior Jack Anthony in a high quality game of attacker versus blocker, 3-0, with all games being decided by the closest of margins. Then, Stowmarket's Lee Balaam led Tony West 2-0 and was 10-8 up, before a resurgent West came back from the dead to win 3-2 despite being 4-0 down in the decider, towards the end of the match all games stopped to watch! in another quarter final Colin Baxter looked to be on his way to victory as he led Dave Unwin 2-0, but a change of tactics saw Unwin turn things around as he just edged it 11-9 in the decider!
In the draw for both the Men's and Veteran singles the anticipated semi final placings based on seeding meant that Andrew Dosher could not play Tony West until the final, (a player he twice came so close to beating in the league), meaning Dosher would play Dave Unwin, a player he had historically beaten until last season but had since struggled to beat. in both Veteran and Men's singles Unwin repeated his success twice with 3-1 and 3-0 victories showing much of the form that made him a Suffolk ranked player in the 80's.
West however was paired twice with Bob Harman, in the men's singles it was routine for West as he made the final 3-0, but in the Veteran's semi a much more focused Harman started asking questions and he led the high ranking England player 2-0, before West again pulled it back to 2-2 and in a dogfight in the decider, which again caused the whole hall to watch, Harman claimed it 11-9 to reach the final
In the Men's singles final the hardbat game West has perfected, enabling him to get to the last 16 of the recent World hard bat championships in London, saw him home 3-0 over teammate Unwin who still asked a few questions but was unable to deal with his opponents game in the end.
The final of the Veteran singles was in the same league as the Men's quarter final game between West and Balaam! Harman was straight out of the blocks against Unwin and led 6-1 however a few missed shots, some inspired play from Unwin and the lead evaporated as Unwin just edged the first. In the second Harman appeared to give up, frustrated at the first game and lost comfortably. In the third set it was Unwin's turn to spurn a lead as Harman saved match points to take the third, he now had regained his composure and took the fourth too. In the decider Harman took the incentive and despite a valiant attempt from Unwin, Harman took the Veteran crown.
In the men's doubles semi final between Dosher / Anthony and Melero / James the former saved two match points to reach the final to play top seeds Unwin / West. This again had the attention of the crowd as the number one seeds trailed 0-2 as Anthony hit a purple patch to actually serve for the match, then in a thrilling climax Unwin / West turned it around to win which meant having already played and lost two finals Unwin had a winners medal.
In the womans singles Sandra Balaam won from Megan Bollen in a round robin, the match that decided the title saw Balaam win 3-0
In the restricted singles semi final Paul Mgerty beat Terry Scott 3-0 while Phil Sinclair beat C Mcintyre in a five set thriller saving match points in the process! Sinclair ran out a 3-1 winner in the final over Paul Mgerty
In the final of the division two singles Harvey Dinkelle beat Terry Scott 3-1
In the final of the two player league it was a 3-1 victory for Mike Hazel over Issac Cunningham
The handicap singles was won by A Coombes over C Mcintyre 21 - 17
Not surprisingly the mixed doubles pairing of husband and wife duo Lee and Sandra Balaam won on a round robin from two other pairings.
In the Junior events, the Cadet singles was won by Harvey Dinkele from Jack Samson in a round robin
In the Junior singles event Dinkle added to his Cadet and division two titles which included beating Suffolk Junior number one player Jack Anthony in a round robin of five players!
SCORES FROM THE BURY ST EDMUNDS TABLE TENNIS CHAMPIONSHIPS
Men's singles Semi-finals
T.West beat R.Harman : 1, 4, 11
D.Unwin beat A.Dosher : 10, -7, 6, 8
Men's singles Final
T.West beat D.Unwin : 6, 10, 9
Women's singles round robin
Winner S.Balaam, Runner-up M.Bollen
Restricted singles final
P.Sinclair beat P.Mcgerty : 5, -10, 6, 7
Junior Singles round robin
Winner H.Dinkele Runner-up J.Anthony
Cadet singles round robin
winner H.Dinkele Runner-up J.Samson
Veteran Singles semi finals
R.Harman beat T.West : 6, -3, 8, -11, 9
D.Unwin beat A.Dosher : 11, 6, 8
Veteran Singles Final
R.Harman beat D.Unwin : -11, -4, 10, 6, 8
Division two singles
H.Dinkele beat T.Scott : 4, -8, 8, 6
Two Player Division
M.Hazell beat I.Cunningham 8, -15, 10, 3
Mens doubles final
T.West / D.Unwin beat A.Dosher / J.Anthony : -7, -7, 7, 17, 8
Mixed doubles round robin
winners L.Balaam / S.Balaam runners-up J.Samson / M.Bollen
Handicap singles final
A.Coombes beat C.Mcintyre : 21-17