Rik James is the Champion of Colchester once again

With no Jake Collins competing in this year’s tournament, the Men’s Singles competition was wide open. The first semi-final was between Andy Warner and Colin Stallwood. After a close first set in which Stallwood won, he never looked like he was going to lose. Even after being pegged back to 2-1, he kept his cool to reach the final. Stallwood’s challenger was between Rik James and Richard Hutchinson. After finishing runner-up last year, James wanted to have another attempt at winning a title he has not won since 2005. He boosted his chances by beating Hutchinson in four sets and reaching a successive final.

In the final of the Men’s Singles, James was only one step away from becoming champion for the first time in twelve years. He did so valiantly after beating an extremely impressive Stallwood in four sets. This title now puts James level on Men’s Singles wins alongside David Cole with nine titles each. James will be hoping to take an outright lead as he aims to defend his title next year.

Last year’s Ladies’ Singles runner-up, Gracie Edwards, was up against Dawn Baldry in the final. In what was one of the closest matches in the history of the Ladies’ Singles competition, Baldry came out on top, beating Edwards 11-9 in the deciding set.

The two losing men from the Men’s Singles semi-finals, Warner and Hutchinson, teamed up to beat Greg Green and Stallwood in the final of the Men’s Doubles. Baldry and Edwards put the Ladies’ Singles behind them to beat Hazel Hume and Sue Welham in four sets and claim the Ladies’ Doubles title. In the Mixed Doubles final, Stallwood and Annabelle Rodriguez beat Warner and Edwards in five sets. This is the third consecutive year these pairings have come up against each other in the final of the Mixed Doubles.

Sam Hume retained his Junior Boys’ title after a classic final involving Suffolk’s number one junior, Dan Shelley. Hume was victorious after beating Shelley in five sets. Edwards retained her Junior Girls’ title she had won last year by beating every other competitor in a round robin group. Edwards also added to her collection by working together with Sam Hume to clinch the Junior Doubles. However, in a repeat of last year’s Cadet Singles final, Jared Chelski got his revenge over number one seed Edwards by causing an upset and claiming the title. Nevertheless, after the year Chelski has had, it probably wasn’t a surprise he was successful.

Ken Lewis was victorious in the Division One Singles after beating Ciaran Whelan. The Division Two Singles probably had the biggest shock out of all the Divisional Singles as top seed, Jared Chelski (unbeaten all season in Division Two), was knocked out of the first round by eventual winner Chris Parr. In the Division Three Singles, top seed Ethan Lloyd beat second seed Oliver Fifield to take the title. The Division Four Singles also followed the same pattern after Jamie Morgan beat Chloe Andrews.

Trevor Lloyd beat Warner in four sets to take home the Veteran’s 40+ title. Andy Holmes won both the Veterans 50+ and the Veterans 60+ competitions.

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Tom Lewis - CDTTL Press Officer

Author: via Colchester Table Tennis League
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