COUNTY JUNIORS 2016
Northants Junior I match report:Division 1A, Day 2, 3rd December 2016
St. Nicholas Park Leisure Centre in Warwick also hosted Day 2 of the Junior County Championships (Div. 1A). The Northants players were Ben Tombs, Virat Patel, Adam Wilson, Anna Wilson & Evie Elliott. Adam was making his first team debut.
Match 1: Northants -vs- Yorks II
With all of the Yorkshire players ranked within the top 65, we had a tough opening match to look forward to! Ben Tombs had an excellent match and was the stand out player for Northants. His first game against Fraser Riley was a tremendous five-setter. Fraser had to call on all his experience to come from 2-1 down and squeeze home 8 in the fifth. Ben cruised home 3-0 in his second match against Jonathan Heslop. Anna Wilson took the higher ranked Ffion Myers to five ends and Evie Elliott took an end off the same player but Virat and Adam found the going tough.
Final Score: Northants 1, Yorks II 9.
Match 2: Northants –vs- Nottinghamshire
Notts proved to be even stronger than Yorkshire, with a couple of their players in the top 30. Ben and Adam were both unlucky to lose to Tom McIntosh 9 in the fifth (Ben was 2-0 up) but that’s as close as we came to winning a game. The Boonyaprapa brothers showed they were a class act, making short work of their opponents. Hannah Ward and Jessica Lindsey were also ruthless in their victories over Anna and Evie.
Final Score: Northants 0, Nottinghamshire 10.
Match 3: Staffordshire –vs- Northants
In our third match against Staffs, the boys were much more competitive. Ben was again our best player, winning both of his matches, for the loss of one end. Both of Adam’s matches went to five and on both occasions Adam had fought back to 2-2, only to fade away in the last set. Virat took Lewis Acton to five, in a much better all-round display. Anna and Evie lost their matches to the much higher ranked duo of Aimee Evans and Georgia Harris.
Final Score: Staffordshire 8, Northants 2.
Match 4: Northants –vs- Warwickshire
Ben capped off a fine overall performance with another brace, giving him five wins out of eight matches. Adam was starting to find his form, although he lost a very good match in five against Ricardo Bolanos, he put that behind him to beat Lewis Singleton 3-1. Evie had a very good game against Olivia Fletcher, playing well to level at 2-2, but a poor start in the fifth ended her chance of a win. Virat came up against two players who were very comfortable against pimples and Anna also found the going tough.
Final Score: Northants 3, Warwickshire 7.
As expected, the standard throughout the two days of fixtures was high and at times we were just simply outplayed (Ben excluded). My thanks go to the team for their excellent behaviour and table manner throughout and to the parents who came to support.
We have a young squad but we’re heading in the right direction. Next season will be interesting.
Kevin Bird (05.12.2016)
Division 1A, Day 1, 8th October 2016
St. Nicholas Park Leisure Centre in Warwick hosted Day 1 of the Junior County Championships (Div 1A). The Northants players were Ben Tombs, Sam Wilson, Virat Patel, Anna Wilson & Evie Elliott. Sam, Virat and Anna were making their first team debuts.
Match 1: Cambridgeshire –vs- Northants
Cambridgeshire surprised us by only fielding two Boys. Ben made short work of Harry Boston (3-0) and with Virat’s first match a walk-over, we found ourselves 2-0 up. Charlotte Boston (Ranked 24) beat Evie (3-0) to pull one back for Cambs and Zach Martillo beat Sam in four ends (3-1). This match was much closer than the score line suggests. Georgina Lister (Ranked 21) comfortably beat Anna (3-0). Cambs were now 3-2 up. Virat’s first match was against Harry Boston (who had already played). Virat’s pimples caused Harry all sorts of problems and at two games all, the game was in the balance. Both players had chances to win and it was Harry who eased through 11-9 in the fifth. Charlotte and Georgina both won their second matches comfortably and Ben saw off Zach for a good brace of wins. Sam’s last match walk-over left us one point short of the draw.
Final Score: Cambridgeshire 6, Northants 4.
Match 2: Northants –vs- Cheshire
Sam started our second round match and led Harry Watson 2-1, but Harry’s attacking style consistently pushed Sam back from the table, where Sam found it difficult to attack with any force. Harry took the fourth and fifth ends for a 3-2 win. Virat was playing on the adjacent table and was 2-0 down to James Courtney. After a brief chat and a change of tactics, Virat was at 2-2 and leading the fifth end. A couple of sloppy serves let his opponent back in at the crucial time and for the second consecutive match, Virat lost out 11-9 in the fifth end. Robyn Cosgrove (Ranked 32) eased past Anna and Evie without dropping a leg. Connor Whitehead beat Ben 3-1. Connor’s excellent retrieving was a standout feature. Anna got Northants on the score sheet with a 3-1 win over Anais O’Connor and Sam also gained his first victory with a comfortable 3-1 win over James Courtney. Evie had a topsy-turvy match with Anais and was 10-8 down in the fifth end but managed to pull out two good services, had some good fortune with a net cord and went on to win 13-11. Ben lost 3-1 to Harry Watson, but was not feeling 100% (having not finished work until 2.30am that morning). Virat played the last match and found Connor Whitehead in good form. Connor won 3-0, wrapping up a 7-3 Chesire win.
Final Score: Northants 3, Cheshire 7.
Match 3: Norfolk –vs- Northants
Our third and final round was against Norfolk. Ben (now feeling better after something to eat) played very well to beat Jonas Lee 3-1. All four ends were close, but Ben played the big points very well. Virat again proved that his combination bat gives most players a problem and Thomas Connolly was no exception. Thomas won 3-0 but two of the end were 15-13 and 16-14! Evie started well against Georgina Sunter taking the first end, but Georgina’s consistent two-winged game saw her win the next three ends. Ross Brown beat Sam 3-1, Again, Sam found himself backing away from the table, which gave his opponents time to play. Anna battled well to overcome Ella Barnard 3-2 and Evie beat the same player 3-1, with three deuce ends. Virat found Jonas too hot to handle. Ben made the match score 4-4 by beating Ross Brown 3-2 in a high quality match. An excellent brace by Ben. Anna was then involved in a ding-dong five-ender with Georgina Sunter. Georgina coming from 2-0 down to level the match, before Anna eased her through 11-8 in the fifth end. An excellent brace from Anna. Sam’s last match was another five-ender, this time against Thomas Connolly. In a match that could have gone either way, it was Thomas who held his nerve and took the fifth end 11-9 to earn Norfolk a draw.
Final Score: Norfolk 5, Northants 5.
What could have been! The 6-4 loss could easily have been a draw and the draw could have been a 6-4 win. The attitude and behaviour of our players was exemplarily and my thanks also go to parents for help with transportation.
The other counties in our division (Yorkshire, Warwickshire, Nottinghamshire & Staffordshire) all look strong and we will need some solid performances on Day 2 to remain in this competitive division.
Kevin Bird (12.10.2016)
COUNTY JUNIOR SECOND TEAM
The County Junior 2nd team consisting of Adam Wilson, Jack Bain, Travis Holly, Rebecca Kimber and Swati Jethwa played their first round of county matches in BATTS, Old Harlow, Essex on 8 October 2016.
All the players played to their best abilities but they were outshone by the experience and ability of the opponent players. As you will see from the summary and points scored below, some games were very close and could have gone our way to win the games and/or sets but lost by only few points.
Well done to all the players for taking part. Whilst we only won 10% of the total number of sets, I and we should all remain positive that with a little more coaching, experience and teamwork, there will be better achievement in future.
Himanshu Ganatra the Team Captain could not make it due to his work commitments and therefore I covered Himanshu and hence am presenting this report. Many thanks to Jay Ganatra who travelled with the team and with the Cadets last week for all of his efforts to support the team.
Matches (Total 4): Won 0; Lost 4; 0% win
Sets (Total 40) ; Won 4; Lost 36; 10% win
Games (Total 143) : Won 33 ; Lost 110; 23% win
Points (Total 2487); Won 1006; Lost 1481; 40% win
Suffolk 2 (9)
Northamptonshire 2 (1)
Northamptonshire 2 (1) Buckinghamshire (9)
1. Adam 11-6, 10-12, 12-10, 6-11, 5-11;
1. Jack 9-11, 7-11, 1-11
Cambridgeshire 2 (8)
Northamptonshire 2 (2)
Middlesex 2 (10 )
Northamptonshire 2 ( 0 )
1. Adam 11-6, 11-6, 11-5
1. Adam 6-11, 4-11, 4-11
COUNTY JUNIORS 2015
The County Juniors First team will this year play their matches:28/29 November 2015 at BATTS, Harlow and on 27/28 February 2016 at Wood Green Academy
The County Juniors Second team arrangements are:Saturday 28 November 2015 St NeotsSaturday 12 March 2016 St Neots
COUNTY JUNIORS 2015
Northants Junior I match report:
Premier Division, Day 1, 28th November 2015
Having just avoided relegation last season by sets difference and with Nicole Bird and Miles Chan now Senior players, Northants were going to have their work cut out in this year's Junior Premier Division. Patryk Polanski and Evie Elliott made their junior first team debuts, playing alongside Alex Ramsden, Ben Tombs, Richie Bailey and Bhavika Mistry. BATTS (Harlow) hosted the first weekend of matches.
Match 1: Middlesex –v- Northants
Even without Senior International Tin-Tin Ho and Junior No. 3 girl Denise Payet, Middlesex were still formidable opponents. The Northants players (Ben, Richie, Patryk, Bhavika and Evie) at times played some good table tennis, but generally were the first to break down in a rally, or make an unforced error. The Middlesex players were far too consistent - as the 10-0 score line suggests. Only four of the ten matches required a fourth end. A tough start to our 2015/16 season.
Final Score: Middlesex 10, Northants 0.
Premier Division, Day 2, 29th November 2015
Match 2: Northants –v- Hampshire
Next up were newly promoted Hampshire. Northants were strengthened considerably by the inclusion of Junior International Alex Ramsden. Ben and Patryk were much more competitive, but were still finding it tough to convert good play into points. Bhavika got Northants on the scoreboard by comfortably beating the Hampshire No. 2 girl and Alex levelled the match at 2-2 with a straight sets win. Evie had a tough time against both of the Hampshire girls but she stayed focused and composed throughout. The experience of playing at the top level will certainly help her long term development. Alex won his second match 3-1, so the score line was now 3-5. Bhavika was next up but found Amy Blagbrough too tough on this occasion, losing in four ends.
Final Score: Northants 3, Hampshire 7
Match 3: Northants –v- Lincolnshire
Our last round of the weekend was against a strong Lincolnshire team. Alex and Bhavika confirmed their superior rankings and both bagged doubles. Ben played a much better all-round game and was unlucky to lose 3-2 to Nick Keast (who had some good fortune at the right time in the fifth end). Evie also played much better and her match against Grace Potter showed promise. Patryk had a tough weekend but thoroughly enjoyed it and will become a much better player for the experience.
Final Score: Northants 4, Lincolnshire 6
Our first weekend was as tough as expected. We have yet to play two of the weaker counties but we really have our work cut out to stay up. On a positive note, the players conduct throughout the weekend was exemplary and I'm confident that they'll all become better players for it. My thanks also go to the parents who helped with transport (and cups of tea!).
Kevin Bird (1.12.2015)
Richie Bailey not in photo also played.
Northants Junior I match report:
Premier Division, Day 3, 27th February 2016
Wood Green Academy in Wednesbury, hosted days 3 and 4 of the Junior Premier Division. The Northants team of Ben Tombs, Richie Bailey, Patryk Polanski, Travis Holly, Bhavika Mistry and Evie Elliott had another tough weekend ahead.
Match 1: Glamorgan –v- Northants
Our first match was against fellow strugglers Glamorgan. Patryk was fast out of the blocks and wrapped up a convincing 3-0 win (his first in the Premier division) over Benedict Watson to level the match at 1-1. Richie Bailey was unlucky to lose 5 ends to the same player, but found Lawrence John too strong, losing in three ends. Bhavika battled past Lara Whitton in five ends and comfortably beat Lydia John 3-0 for Northants other two points.
Final Score: Glamorgan 7, Northants 3.
Match 2: Northants –v- Lancashire
Next up were title contenders Lancashire. Bhavika flew the flag for Northants, picking up our only point by beating Amy Hutchings for the first time 3-2. None of the other games required more than three ends, with Lancs wrapping up a 9-1 win in double-quick time.
Final Score: Northants 1, Lancashire 9.
Premier Division, Day 4, 28th February 2016
Match 3: Sussex –v- Northants
Day 2 and our first match is against the defending champions, Sussex. Although not as strong as last year, they still fielded Josh Bennett (No. 5 Junior Boy) and Kate Cheer (No. 3 Junior Girl). Travis Holly made his first appearance for the Junior First team, replacing Richie Bailey.
Ben Tombs played a very good match against George Hazell before going down 3-1. Travis, Evie and Patryk all found the going very tough. Bhavika also drew a blank, but will look back at what could have been. In both of her matches, the first three ends were deuce, with Bhavika only winning 2 out of the 6. Sussex ran out comfortable 10-0 winners. Northants only winning 3 legs.
Final Score: Sussex 10, Northants 0
Match 4: Northants –v- Kent
Our fourth and last match of the weekend was against Kent. Again, the quality of the opposition was clear to see. Kent had the No. 2 Cadet Boy, the No. 18 Junior Boy and the No. 39 Junior Boy. None of our boys were able to win a leg, but Evie Elliott did, winning the third end against Lois Perryman. Just reward for plugging away. Bhavika was again our stand out performer – and rightly so given her national ranking – with two comfortable 3-0 wins.
Final Score: Northants 2, Kent 8
A very tough season, which has ended in relegation. Our stay in the Premiership was brief, but overall a worthwhile and enjoyable experience. We look forward to playing in Division One next time round. My thanks go to the players, whose conduct was exemplary and to Chris and Jayne Elliott who helped with transport and general support on both weekends.
Kevin Bird (29.02.2016)
Richie Bailey not in photo also played.
Nottinghamshire 9 v 1 Northamptonshire (2)
Nottinghamshire had a very good attacking side, however all of our players gave it their best, Rishan Patel winning the final set. Overall score 9-1 loss. Just some points taken away from the above games for practice sessions - Short touch play and counter attacking forehand top/sidespin (coming in early)
Northamptonshire (2) 1 v 9 Cambridge
Cambridge were also a strong attacking side but Northamptonshire had very close games once again with Mihir Mistry winning the final set. Overall score 9-1 loss. Again some points to take away from the above games for practice sessions - Serve and receive topspin pendulum service. - Block - Third ball attack.
Northamptonshire (2) 8 v 2 Cambridge (2)
Northamptonshire stayed ahead - very good results and very well played by the whole side. Using points from the above games Northamptonshire won 8-2. Overall I am very pleased with the results throughout the day - boys and girls were well behaved and gave it 100% at all times.
Himanshu Ganatra (Team Captain )