Winchcombe Closed Championships 2010
This year the Winchcombe championships were played on April fools day. The club venue took centre stage, as did the talent, with some of the best players in the Cheltenham taking part in addition to all of the former championship winners.
The evening kicked off early at 7.15pm with Alan Gallop taking on the two times champion Nick Davidson who played well enough to get through in two straight sets where he met Choi Sze To who was in fine form. She beat him in straight sets and then saw off Matt Hartwell by exactly the same scores of 14 – 21 and 17 – 21. Darrell Wiltshire first beat Chris Lane and then proved too strong as he marched on past Ken Savage and last year’s champion Graham Fisher before meeting Choi Sze To in the semi - final.
In the other half of the draw Charlie Loh started well against Luke Moffat, however, despite an easy second game for Luke he could not hang on as Charlie went on to win. Chris Pearce began well but was pushed all the way in round two by Stuart Greene, winning 22 – 20 in the third. He then ousted Doug Payne to meet Rob Sinderberry in the other semi - final. Rob Sinderberry looked the most comfortable of the semi –finalists, not dropping a set as he thrashed Craig Norledge and strolled past Stewart Ratcliffe.
Chris Pearce met Rob Sinderberry in the semi final and Chris looked in even better form than in the league as he went onwards in to the final to meet Choi Sze To who had overcome an epic 3 set match to beat Wiltshire.
The final was going to be exciting as Choi Sze, a former champion had not lost to Chris this season, whilst Chris was looking for his first championship win. The match was dominated by serve with some excellent top spin shots as they traded point after point. Chris Pearce pulled away enough to see out the first game easy at 21-10.
Choi Sze made a good start in the second but the heavy schedule of matches began to take their toll and Chris came back with several outstanding top spin shots from both wings, to secure the second game 21 – 18 and his first Championship.
The drawn doubles also took place on the same night but without as much excitement. The draw paired Choi Sze To and Chris Pearce, and as predicted they cruised to the title over Rob Sinderberry and Ken Savage 21 – 12 21 – 17.
The beer and chips at the Royal Oak sealed the night, that clearly belonged to Chris Pearce, as he became only the third player in the club’s history to win both titles in the same year.
Article by Nick Davidson