National Shul Table Tennis League review
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Sixty-five players from 13 synagogue teams competed in the first-ever National Shul Table Tennis League, sponsored by Maccabi GB, which took place on Sunday.
Sides from Kingston to Southend headed to BATTS in Harlow, Essex, fighting it out for the hotly contested 2012 event.
The Open title was narrowly won by Norrice Lea of Hampstead Garden Suburb who pipped North London rivals, Borehamwood to win by two points. The battle for second place was equally tight with three teams tying on 12 points before Borehamwood were awarded the runners-up spot for winning more matches than Southend and Radlett.
Norrice Lea’s Adam Black and Michael Gerard delivered solid performances, while Peter Wilson, Steve Burns and Andy Fisch added strength in depth to edge out the opposition.
The Open consolation event was won by Dov Katz’s Mill Hill side with Kingston runners-up after Brian Hurwitz captained them to a nail-biting win over Woodside Park.
True to form, Radlett and Maccabiah star Jeremy Banks did not drop a match in his team’s campaign. Son, Josh Banks, was ably supported the up-and-coming Sam Krisman although that was not enough to stop Borehamwood’s father-and-son team, Jonathan and Judah Jackson leading their teams to Open and Junior medal positions.
The Junior title went to a Borehamwood side that was simply too strong for the opposition, only dropping six sets. Alongside the undefeated Jackson and Mark Collins; Oliver Assor, Jamie Saleh and Josh Zucker stormed to success taking a full 20 points.
In second place Norrice Lea’s Jacob Nico Katz was the key man backed up by fine performances from Jonathan Stelzer, Samuel Gottlieb and Nathan Sonn.
Radlett took the consolation title with Southend’s Plaskow brothers, Harri Berg, Gavin Rosehill and Reuben Burns runners-up. In fifth place with their team of newcomers, Chabad displayed brilliant fighting spirit against well trained and more experienced Junior opposition. Their team of Jodeci and Devante Joseph, James Benham-Whyte, Daniel Robert and Damien Zimelstern flew the flag for Buckhurst Hill.
Event organiser Adam Black said: "We've got England ranked players in our community, but the National Shul league isn't just about them. It's a league for all standards, for all kinds of Jews. Whether you're Jodeci from Buckhurst Hill or Yosef from Hendon this is for you."