South Devon & Torbay Table Tennis League
Founded in January 1932 the first winners of the South Devon & Torbay Table Tennis League were the Torquay YMCA who battled out many of the early years with their YMCA rivals in Newton Abbot, Torquay winning 4 titles and Newton Abbot 3.
After the war St Georgians came to prominence winning 6 titles between 1946 & 1959, however the 50's really belonged to Paignton Holiday camp who won their first title in 1953 and also went on to win 6 titles.
Paignton YMCA came to the fore in the 60's and 70's with several different teams claiming the title the most successful of these teams being the Flintstones and Palace Avenue.
The 80's saw the first appearance of the current Taverners side who took the title 2 years running 1988-1990. The Legionnaires won 4 titles in the early 90's and under the guise of Supa Roofing took 4 more titles between 1997-2003.
Halwell came to prominence in 1997 and for the following 16 years either themselves or Supa Roofing / Newton Abbot Batmen (another change of name & venue) won the title. Newton Abbot Batmen winning 6 titles in a row from 2007-2013.
Top men players in the early years A.Nickels & A Nuttall each won the Burton Cup 3 times. The League's Ex-President Gordon Addison also won the cup 3 times between 1957-1961.
Familiar names to all then emerged with Maurece Travis winning his first title in 1963 (he went on to win it 3 times), Brian Pengelly winning his first of 4 titles in 1974 and Dennis Gibbs picking up his first title in 1977 only to have it snatched away by a certain Chester Barnes in 1978! However, Dennis, undeterred by his defeat by Barnes, has gone on to win the Burton Cup an unprecedented 18 times, including 8 titles in a row between 1990-98 and he is still looking for more. Son Shaun Gibbs interrupted his dad's run of wins, taking 4 titles in a row from 2000-04.
The Ladies Knight Cup changed hands many times in the early years until P Northcott won 4 in a row in the mid 50's. In the 60's it was the turn of Marion Wilkey who won 5 titles in a row. Pamela Mortimer came to the fore in the 70's along with the Pritchard girls Gina & Julie. More recently Clare Pengelly, Lindsey Heyward, Helen Parton and Sonja Wicks (nee Hillman) Jo Piwowar and the Johns’ sisters Jazmin & Holly have been prominant. Right up to date we now have Naomi Jackson, Lauren Loosemore and the return of Sonja leading the way.
The emergence of Torbay Academy and Newton Abbot Table Tennis Clubs in the last 10 years has seen many more players and teams join the League, which is arguably now as strong as we have ever seen it. The Leaguealso has a much more international feel with top calibre players such as Piwowars, Mitranescus and Cincala tothe fore at Torbay Academy, whilst there are many familiar names eg Gibbs, Nicholls, Ryland, mixed with new including Sage, Jackson & Loosemore at Newton Abbot.
Now fully recovered from the COVID years the League goes from strength to strength.
The South Devon & Torbay Table Tennis League currently has over 160 individual members playing in 34 teams in 4 Divisions.
There are many clubs in the area who will welcome anyone interested in playing table tennis.
Check out the clubs & practice centres on the menu bar or contact the League Secretary David Davies for more details