A Hastings & District Table Tennis League talent has won a national title.
Ritchie Venner triumphed in the over-50 men’s singles at the National Masters Table Tennis Championships.
Having reached the age of 50 last month, the Saints Table Tennis Club player competed in his first O50 event at Tipton in the West Midlands.
Venner, the no.1 seed and no.5 vet O40 nationally, beat the no.2 seed and no.10 vet nationally, Adrian Pilgrim (Warwickshire), 11-9, 10-12, 12-10, 5-11, 11-8 in the final.
Venner also reached the final of the O40 men’s doubles, but wasn’t quite able to make it a double. He and Lorestas Trumpauskas (Essex) were beaten 2-11, 5-11, 11-9, 7-11 by Chris Bartram (Kent) and Andy Trott (Northamptonshire).
Several Hastings League players competed in the championships and two more reached finals of the various events.
Rose Rainton (Hollington) was a runner-up in the O40 women’s doubles alongside Sanja Clements (Dorset). They lost out 11-5, 6-11, 7-11, 11-3 to Emma Rose (Hertfordshire) and Denise McEvoy (Cheshire).
Sheila King (Tigers) made it to the final of the O50 women’s doubles in partnership with Di St Ledger (Staffordshire). They too lost in four sets, going down 3-11, 5-11, 11-7, 4-11 at the hands of Jane Cohen (Yorkshire) and Regina Grech (Wales).
Venner, incidentally, won the men’s singles title at the 2015 Hastings Closed Championships and topped the local league’s individual averages.
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