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Lily leads Weymouth’s smash hit at Dorset finals
6:20pm Tuesday 19th March 2013 in Sport
EIGHTEEN young players from Weymouth made a big impact at the Dorset Schools Individual Table Tennis event with Budmouth junior Lily Cherry excelling expectations to win the girls’ under-16 competition.
Fellow Budmouth students Tom Cherry and Snigdha Maganti made it to their respective finals in the under-16 boys and under-13 girls’ sections while Ben Graham (under-16) and Wey Valley’s James Mathie (under-13) were beaten at the semi-final stage in their classes.
Furthermore, two Weymouth under-11 boys – Jamie Blair (Chickerell Primary) and Louie James (Holy Trinity) – made it out of their groups before bowing out in the quarter-finals. Having 18 entrants from the Weymouth area at this event was an increase of three on last year and this contingent made up a very respectable 25 per cent of the total entry.
Weymouth & District youth table tennis co-ordinator Andy Millar was delighted at the strides made by the area’s youngsters after successful school clubs at Budmouth, Wey Valley and All Saints have given players the opportunity to develop their game and to be competitive with opposition from East Dorset.
He said: “There was a fantastic turn out from Weymouth players and it was a really exciting day of competition.
“The strong showing from Weymouth shows the progress that is being made in the district and the strength of players coming through.
“Overall it was a fantastic event for us and it really underlined the massive progress which has been made in the last 18 months.
“We have the best group of girls in the county and even our boys are catching up with Bournemouth – the gap was huge last year.”
As for Lily Cherry, by winning the under-16 girls’ singles, she has now qualified to represent Dorset Schools in the ESTTA finals at Doncaster and the Weymouth & District League has backed her success by contributing towards her travel costs.