June 20, 2015, by Lee Chrimes
European University Table Tennis Championship 2015 – Day One
Event report by Jonathan Spinks, UoN Table Tennis
This year our men and women have been lucky enough to qualify for the European University Table Tennis Championships held in Geneva.
Despite early setbacks, with two of the team missing the flight and problems with entry, we settled into the warm, sunny weather well! Today saw the first competition day, with the group stages of the team events being played.
The men were in a group with the universities of Poitiers, Zurich and Cyprus. The boys opened with a dominant 3-1 victory over Zurich, with Paul McCreery winning two, Liam McTiernan one, and Ben Gardner unluckily losing his deciding set.
Next up the men played Poitiers, but a very strong French team proved too much for our players, who lost 3-1, with Paul picking up the only point.
The final match was against supposed group underdogs, Cyprus. Earlier results meant we needed a 3-1 win to make it through the group. Paul and Liam both played extremely well to take a set each of their number 1, ranked 230 in the world, but could not pull through. Paul again took a point for UoN, but it was not enough as Ben lost a tight match.
The boys will now play in the 9th-16th playoffs, where they are hopeful for greater success.
The girls were drawn with Kiel, Warsaw and Dumlupinar. The first match against Kiel was the tensest of the day, which could have gone either way. Yolanda King opened confidently, but Tressa Armitage was pegged back by an awkward style from the German number 2. Marina Nazarova lost hers, but then Tressa played well to level the tie. It was then down to Yolanda, who secured the win 3-2 in a very tight match.
After this early success we were then undone by potential favourites Warsaw. This time Marina was able to take a point, but it ended as 3-1 loss. They were able however to secure a final win against the Turkish team, meaning they advance to the quarter-finals tomorrow.
We’re now looking forward to seeing some of Geneva, then getting back to matches tomorrow.
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