Biggest Halifax table tennis championships for decades will see top players go head-to-head this Sunday

The biggest Halifax Table Tennis Championships in decades will take place this month.

By Tom Scargill
Wednesday, 23rd March 2022, 1:11 pm
Updated Wednesday, 23rd March 2022, 1:12 pm
Table tennis.

57 players will take part in the event on March 27, the biggest turnout in over a quarter of a century.

Complimenting the superb entry is one of the most open fields in memory, with several viable contenders in the mix for the title.

Shaun Ellis, the league's most consistent player for the past decade, will start the day as number one seed. The two-time champion is currently top of both the averages and sets award in the division, but will have his work cut out for him during the course of the day, with the next four seeded players all defeating him at some stage this season.

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Richard Aitken reached the 2020 final and starts as second seed while Matthew Shaw goes in search of a maiden title after an impressive campaign as third seed.

Cameron Sandhu, who beat both Aitken and Ellis on his way to the final of the Tri-League Super 8s last month, is the fourth seed, while defending champion and back-to-back winner Ben Fillingham starts the day as fifth seed looking to become the first player to win the event three times since its return in 2013.

All five players have been regulars in the British League this season, with Sandhu representing Huddersfield and the other four playing for Halifax.

The quintet will begin the day as the favourites but they face stiff competition from a strong field consisting of numerous players capable of being a surprise package on their day.

Explosive attacker Ian Marshall has been in good form while seventh seed Alex Shaw has enjoyed another strong season in which he has defeated higher-ranked players both locally and nationally.

James Foster is in the form of his life and enters the event with wins against five of the seven top seeds under his belt in the last three months.

Young sensation Abraham Sellado is currently on a rapid ascent. Ranked number two in the country at under 13 level, the youngster is a genuine contender and will be looking to put his recent time training in the Czech Republic to good use.

Meanwhile, Lewis Palmer has recently rediscovered his form and has previously reached the semi-final of the competition, while his league team-mate Liam Chipman has enjoyed a very successful first season in Halifax after making his return to the sport. The likes of Russell Senior and Jake Clarke both have a history of picking up wins against the top seeds and Jo Keighley, who is currently ranked ninth in England at veteran women's level, has dispatched of the majority of the main contenders during the season.

The day will consist of several events, including categories for veterans, juniors and banded competitions for each of the league's three divisions. The day will culminate with the doubles.

Play will start at 9am with the open singles due to start at around 12.30pm. Spectators are welcome to attend. Hot and cold food will be available from the cafeteria. The address is Calderdale Business Park, Club Lane, Ovenden, HX2 8DB.