League Update 23rd December
Twelve year old Josh Weatherby of Sunderland was the star player when his team Saint Chads took on the Springwell A side in the Premier Division of the Northumbria League. The youngster, who is currently at number two in the England under 13 ranking list and number seven in the cadet list, defeated both Phil Prady and Tony Gelder in straight games and had a great win by 11 – 6 in the fifth over top player Graham Barella. He also played in the doubles with his father Keith and they triumphed over Barella and Prady after coming back from two games down. With Weatherby, Senior and Chris Blake both getting two sets the Saints triumphed 8 – 2 to go level with N.E.S.L.C. Eagles in second place in the table, eight points  behind Cramlington Casuals.
Northumbria’s young representative teams have been in action in the National Junior and National Cadet Leagues staged in Middlesbrough. The Juniors have been represented by Adam Webster, Andrew Matfin, Tim Bryce and Thaaqib Saleem and after losing out in the first session to Darlington, Bishop Auckland A and Ormesby A,   the three strongest teams in the division, they beat Blitz of Gainsborough, Ormesby B and C teams before losing  to Bishop Auckland B. 
Webster also played for the Cadets along with Sree Kanakala and Simon Knopf and they are riding high in second spot. In the first session they defeated Darlington and Bishop Auckland A but lost to Ormesby A.
They then won all four of their next matches overcoming Blitz, Bishop Auckland B, Ormesby B and Billingham Northfield.
At the other end of the age scale, Dave Robson did well in the recent South Shields Grand Prix, reaching the final of the Veterans event before losing to Tomasz Rzeszotko of Wales.
Aubrey Drapkin
Author: via Northumbria Table Tennis League
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