Hastings talent wins Euro bronze medal

Yolanda King won a team bronze medal in the Czech Republic.
Yolanda King won a team bronze medal in the Czech Republic.

Table tennis talent Yolanda King had a successful time while representing the University of Nottingham in the European Championships.

The student from Hastings won a bronze medal in the women’s team event and reached the quarter-finals of the women’s singles in Olomouc, Czech Republic.

Playing at number three alongside colleagues Jenny Liu and Maria Tsaptsinos, King was unbeaten in the team event, playing an important role in achieving the bronze medal.

She won her singles matches in each of Nottingham’s 3-0 wins, against Amsterdam (Holland), Wroclaw (Poland) and then, in the quarter-finals, Bordeaux (France).

King was Nottingham’s only winner in their 3-1 semi-final loss against the Jan Dlugosz University in Czestochowa (Poland), narrowly defeating the defensive Kinga Falarz 12-10, 12-14, 11-6, 12-10.

She opened her women’s knockout singles account with a comfortable first round straight games victory over Simone Broersen, Netherlands (University Amsterdam).

Next, King had an incredibly close 12-10, 4-11, 4-11, 11-8, 13-11 success against Alicja Lesniak (Kozminski University, Poland).

But in the quarter-finals she faced the powerful Russian, Svetlana Mokhnacheva (Kazan Innovative University), who had knocked her out in the last 16 of the same competition last year.

King had her chances, but went down narrowly, 8-11, 13-11, 10-12, 6-11. She then found it a bit galling that Mokhnacheva withdrew from her semi-final clash with a Russian university colleague.

“It was great to win a team bronze, but a real shame I couldn’t add to it in the singles as I had a good draw run and was up against the weakest of the Russians, who didn’t even turn up for her semi-final,” said King, a member of Weald Table Tennis Club in Cranbrook.