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25th Anniversary Party & Hard-Bat Competition - 21 December 2021

2021 marks the 25th anniversary of the opening of the purpose-built Cippenham Table Tennis Centre and to celebrate the occasion the Club held a party on Tuesday evening. Over forty members and their families attended and a great evening was had by all. There was food and drink, including seasonal hot mulled wine and mince pies and the evening kicked off with a short address from Club founder Graham Trimming about the purpose of the evening. He paid tribute to the Building Committee of 1996 that included Steve Joel and himself and two other very influential members who have since passed away in Alec Watson and Frank Earis. A photo of that team, taken at the opening of the building on 1 October 1996, is shown above. The opening was the culmination of five years' immense effort that included raising a total of £520,000 from public funds and became the first project in Slough to benefit from National Lottery funding.

To add some table tennis to the evening, a friendly hard-bat event was held with twenty-nine participants playing games, best of three up to eleven. The format, initially organised into two sections of 14 and 15 players, with each matched player in each section playing off for their overall position, fitted nicely into the two-and-a-half hours' schedule.

Many of the players who would have been more favoured in an event in which they used their own sandwich bats did not fare so well and it is no exaggeration tom say that there were a number of surprise results. In the end the battle for first place was between seasoned veteran Mike Rhodes and the up and coming junior Jamie Woodford. Mike eventually won 11-8 in the third after two deuce games.

Opportunity was also taken to make the presentations of the Maidenhead League Division 1 trophies for the truncated 2019-20 season and League Chairman Keith Machin and President Jan Chapman were on hand to do the honours.

Final positions in the hard-bat competition:

1. Mike Rhodes

2. Jamie Woodford

3. Elroy Hull

4. Johnny Iles

5. Michal Garski

6. Jaiden Caldeira

7. Anna Piercey

8. Bharath Prasanna Kumar

9. Qasim Hussain

10. Maciej Dlugozima

11. Hari Prasad Reddy Vennapusa

12. Hasanain Hussain

13. Sunjay Thakker

14. Bassam Mocharrafie

15. Rachael Iles

16. Jyothi Puttaswamy

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