Commited Pont youngsters take tables by storm

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PONTELAND High School students made their mark in both the individual and team table tennis county and zone tournaments.

At the team zone finals, held in Middlesbrough on Sunday, January 19, the Ponteland U16 boys’ side of Dan Potter, Andrew Potter, Tom Reeman and Sam Turner represented Northumberland against the county champions of Cumbria, Teesside, North Yorkshire, the Humber and Tyneside.

Against very tough opposition, the boys played extremely well and worked hard to finish in a very creditable fourth place.

The girls’ U19 team of Jen Wainwright, Sophie Wainwright, Rachel Cripwell and Grace Lambert were automatically awarded the zone finals crown and therefore became the champions of the northern region.

But they were in action at the Northumberland individual tournament on January 31.

Sisters Jen (U19) and Sophie (U16) became individual county champions with Rachel (runner-up U16) and Grace (3rd U16) ensuring a Ponteland monopoly of success in the girls’ events.

In the U16 boys’, with Dan Potter unable to compete through illness, it was his younger brother Andrew who stepped into the breach to come an excellent second place against players up to two years older than him.

Ryan Gerrard, Dan Hadfield and Sam Turner all made it through to the quarter-finals, with good displays also from Tom Reeman and Josh Silipo in the group stages.

These achievements are matched by the outstanding level of participation and commitment from the 40+ table tennis players who practise and play in school during mornings and at the Friday after-school club.

Huge thanks must also go to Mr Doig, Mr Coulson and Mr Atkinson, who give their time, expertise and energy at these clubs.