The BUCS Individual Table Tennis Championships took place at our David Ross Sports Centre last weekend over two days of highly competitive action. The championships were set out with the Men's and Women's Single competitions run using a group stage followed by a knockout stage where all players progress to either the championship or plate knock out stage after the initial groups stage. The Men's, Women's and Mixed Doubles competitions was a straight knockout competition. With hundreds of athletes competing from a whole host of different universities, the event was a brilliant weekend that showcased the very best of British university table tennis.
Among the entrants into the championships were players from the University of Nottingham who represented the #GreenandGold with distinction throughout the competition. Out of the twenty possible medals that were on offer, seventeen ended up being placed around the neck of our athletes which is a truly remarkable success and the table tennis clubs biggest achievement to date! This impressive medal haul included four gold's, five silver's and eight bronze medals across all five different categories of competition.
The gold medal winners for the university were Jiaqi Meng in the Women's Singles, Josh Bennett and Shayan Siraj in the Men's Doubles, Jiaqi Meng and Denise Payet in the Women's Doubles, and Josh Bennett and Jiaqi Meng in the Mixed Doubles. A magnificent weekend for all four of those athletes, and in particular Jiaqi Meng who claimed gold in three events! Even though expected with such a high medal achievement, it is worth noting that in all four of the Women's Singles, Men's Doubles, Women's Doubles and Mixed Doubles events each step of the podium was represented by #GreenandGold athletes!
Another big story for the club at the event were the achievements of Josh Bennett. After 3 previous years competing at the event, he finally managed to claim not only one, but two gold medals! University Table Tennis coach Kelly Sibley said "after everything that Josh has done for University of Nottingham Table Tennis, it was lovely to see him walk away from his final championships with three medals overall."
Adding to these comments, Kelly stated that overall the event was a "fantastic weekend for the university's table tennis club who performed at their best, not just on the table, but off the table as well with the team spirit being high throughout the weekend." Emphasising the club's success, coach Sibley mentioned that they had "showcased that the University of Nottingham really does have the best table tennis programme in the UK."
We commend every single one of our athletes who competed at the BUCS Individual Table Tennis Championships and congratulate all of our medallists. For a full rundown of the medals won by the #GreenandGold at the event, please see below.
Men's Singles: Josh Bennett - Silver; Shayan Siraj - Bronze; Calum Morrison - Bronze
Top seed Helshan was troubled in the last 16 by Chun Wai Fung of Imperial but prevailed 11-2 in the fifth set. He then proceeded to beat Luc Miller of Sheffield Hallam 3-1 in the QF although found himself 0-1 and 7-9 down. Helshan overcame Shayan Siraj [4th seed] (our silver scholar) in a tight 3-1 match before beating Josh Bennett 2nd seed (another one of our silver scholars) 3-0 in the final. Bennett only lost one set to Kevin Qu of Edinburgh in the QF (who took out 6th seed Joe Clark of Newcastle in the Last 32) and 7th seed Calum Morrison (a silver scholar) in a great match that ended a tight 3-1 to Bennett. Shayan overcame another UoN player, 8th seed Naphat Boonyaprapa 3-1, after Naphat won the first set. Elsewhere in the draw, every UoN player made it out their respective groups and there were a lot of UoN vs UoN knockout matches: Sam Kwan (12th seed) beat Dan Shelley in the first round, 15th seed Mateusz Mikosz defeated Yameen Al-Dahiri in the first round, Naphat defeated Sam Kwan 3-1 in the Last 16, Robert Pelc (13th seed) lost to Shayan 3-0 in the last 16 but beat 20th seed Jacob Evans 3-0 in the last 32. President and 19th seed Connor Whitehead lost a close 3-1 match in Last 32 to Scottish international Yaser Razouk of Glasgow, Jack Green lost in the first round to 5th seed James Smith of Cambridge and Fraser Riley lost out in the fifth set to Ben Cawston of Oxford Brookes in the first round.
Women's Singles: Jiaqi Meng - Gold; Denise Payet - Silver; Haoyu Liu - Bronze; Mollie Patterson - Bronze
Top seed Jiaqi Meng didn’t drop a set all the way to the final where she beat 2nd seed Denise Payet 3-1. Denise beat Haoyu Liu (3rd seed) 11-9 in the deciding set in the semi, whilst Jiaqi Meng beat Mollie Patterson in the other semi. 9 out of 16 players in the Last 16 were UoN players, as well as UoN alumni Letitia McMullan of University of Surrey who lost out to Jiaqi in the QF. Lois Peake overcame Women’s Doubles bronze medalist Dorothea Ban 3-2 in the Last 32 and beat fellow UoN player Tiana Dennison in the Last 16 in another five set match, before losing out to Mollie in the QF. Mollie had previously beaten silver scholar and 13th seed Gaja Mavri 3-1 in the Last 16. Jasmin Wong (8th seed) lost out to McMullan in the Last 16 in a close 3-1 match after beating Eunice Lam of Durham 12-10 in the deciding set in the previous round. Amy Hutchings won her group and had a great 3-0 win against Irish international and 15th seed Nicole Scott of University of Liverpool before losing to Denise in the Last 16.
Men's Doubles: Josh Bennett & Shayan Siraj - Gold; Mateusz Mikosz & Calum Morrison - Silver; Naphat Boonyaprapa & Robert Pelc - Bronze
Top seeds Josh Bennett and Shayan Siraj won a thrilling 5 set match against second seeds Mateusz Mikosz and Calum Morrison in the final to take gold. Morrison and Mikosz overcame a very strong unseeded Edinburgh pairing of Chongzhi Wang and Kevin Qu 3-1 in the semis. They overcame 7th seeds from UoN, Connor Whitehead and Sam Kwan 3-2 in the Last 32 in what was a fantastic game of table tennis. They then didn’t drop a set until the QF when they overcame Trent pairing and 3rd seeds James Hobson and Will Dobinson. In the other semi final, Bennett and Siraj beat 4th seeds Robert Pelc and Naphat Boonyaprapa 3-1. Pelc and Boonyaprapa beat 5th seeds from UEA Guarav Aravind and Zachary Martillo in the QF after overcoming UoN pairing of Ross Brown and James Vella Vidal in a tight 5th set encounter in the Last 16. The 5th seeds beat Jack Rogers and Jack Sandler from UoN in the last 16.
30th seeds from UoN Charlie Cunningham and Oliver Thorne did tremendously well to make it to the Last 16 and took the first set against quarter finalists George Coulson and Luc Miller from Sheffield Hallam. Other UoN matches: 9th seeds Jacob Evans and Yameen Al-Dahiri lost to the strong Imperial pairing of Chun Wai Fung and Jarrett Zhang in the Last 32, Dan Hearne-Potton and Fraser Riley lost to 15th seeds Kin Fung Chan and Eric Foley from Oxford in the fifth set, Ezra Slater and Matt Johnson lost 3-2 to George Long and Jon-Vai Chung from UCL, Jack Green and Dan Shelley also lost in the fifth but to Dundee pairing of Andrew Nimmo and John Hannah and Sirat Ahmed and Adedapo Emmanuel lost 3-0 to 15th seeds from University of Sheffield.
Women's Doubles: Jiaqi Meng & Denise Payet - Gold; Haoyu Liu & Mollie Patterson - Silver; Jasmin Wong & Lois Peake - Bronze
Denise Payet and Jiaqi Meng continued the tradition of top seeds getting gold as they beat Haoyu Liu and Mollie Patterson 3-1 in the final. Patterson and Liu had to overcome the 4th seeds from UCL Dorothea Ban and Monica Koh 3-0 in the Semis, after the UCL pairing knocked out Gaja Mavri and Tiana Dennison in 5 in the QF. Lois Peake and Jasmin Wong who were the 3rd seeds comprised the other semi-final but couldn’t take a set off Denise and Jiaqi. Amy Hutchings and Daniela Grammatopoulou reached the last 16 but lost out to 7th seeds Juliette Heffi and Lauren Stacey from UCL, who had beaten the UoN pairing of Jemma Walker and Katherine Shaw in the round before. Ffion Myers and Holly Long won a great 5th set match against rivals Trent but lost out to Gaja and Tiana in the Last 16.
Mixed Doubles: Josh Bennett & Jiaqi Meng - Gold; Shayan Siraj & Haoyu Liu - Silver ; Calum Morrison & Denise Payet - Bronze; Mateusz Mikosz & Mollie Patterson - Bronze
In the Mixed Doubles we also had all four seminalists. Top seeds Josh Bennett and Jiaqi Meng beat 4th seeds Mateusz Mikosz and Mollie Patterson 3-1 in one of the semi-finals and the second seeds Haoyu Liu and Shayan Siraj beat 3rd seeds Denise Payet and Calum Morrison. The latter had previously been taken to deuce in the deciding set in a huge battle with fellow UoN pairing Naphat Boonyaprapa and Lois Peake. Siraj and Liu themselves had a battle in the Last 16 when they needed 5 sets to beat the Newcastle pairing of Joe Clark and Frøydis Jørgensen. Connor Whitehead and Daniela Grammatopoulou reached the last 16 without dropping a set before losing to a strong Loughborough pairing of Ashwin Subramanian Venkat Raman and Ridhi Rohit 3-1. 5th seeds Sam Kwan and Jasmin Wong reached the QF but bowed out to Mikosz and Patterson 3-1, who had beaten UoN pairing Yameen Al-Dahiri and Tiana Dennison. Robert Pelc and Gaja Mavri outperformed their 18th seeding and reached the QF but lost to Siraj and Liu.
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Posted on Saturday 27th November 2021