The Berkshire Closed, our annual County Championships tournament, was held from the 22nd to 23rd of April this year at the Wellington Health and Fitness Club – a brilliant venue for our most prestigious internal event. The tournament saw some of the best players from across the region come together to compete in various categories for prizes and glory, and it was certainly an event to remember.
Despite the low turnout, the tournament was a huge success, with thanks in particular to the generous sponsorship of Karakal and Phil Tuck, who kindly provided prizes such as a bottle of Tattinger Champagne for both the Men’s winner and the Plate winner. The A grade Tournament consisted of two boxes with three players each, allowing for a competitive atmosphere with plenty of exciting matches.
In box A we had entries from Gurbhaj Kahlon, Jeremy Baker and Manu SIdhu and in box B were Jonathan Hope, Josh Blunt and Bradley Cherry.
All the matches in Box A were decided by a best of 5 format and Gurbhaj was simply too good, winning all of his matches 3-0 with an excellent display of skill and technique. His graceful style of play and sheer dominance earned him the title of being ‘the one to beat’ amongst his opponents.
In Box B, Jonathan Hope won both of his matches 3-1, and what a battle between Josh and Bradley! It went all the way, with Josh eventually winning the fifth. It was a great game to watch, full of tension, with the final score being 11-6, 11-13, 11-3, 9-11, 10-12.
In the 5/6 play off Bradley beat Manu and in the 3 /4 play off Jeremy was given a walkover as Josh was poorly.
In the A grade final, Gurbhaj remained consistent in his performance and was able to defeat Jonathan 3-0 (11-2 11-9 11-9). He clearly demonstrated his exceptional skills in the game, setting himself up as an impressive County Champion once again. Congratulations to Gurbhaj for his remarkable success in becoming a triple county champion in the Men’s A grade
In the B grade there were 8 players and 2 boxes of 4. Box A went all the way, seeing Malcolm Hay, Ray Durman and Andy Burrell all end up with 4 points, Malcolm going through on points count back. In box B, Reuben Oyler finished first with 6 points, then James Mathers with 5 points, followed by Russell Philips and Andy Jones. In the 5/6 play off, it was Andy Burrell who beat Andy Jones 3/0. The 3/4 play off saw Ray beating Russell 3/0.
The B final between Malcolm and Reuben was an exhilarating match, with both competitors pushing each other to the limit. It was a seesaw battle that went all the way, with Reuben ultimately emerging as the winner after five intense sets. What a thrilling match this was indeed, final score 3-2 (15-13 9-15 16- 14 14-16 15-13). Well done Reuben on a great win and we look forward to seeing you back defending the B title or stepping up to the A grade next year.