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Cippenham Young Players' Summer Festival - 23-24 June 2018

Repeat performance from Louis Price

The twentieth running of the Cippenham Young Players’ Summer Festival, a 1-star open tournament for four age groups over two days, featured another fantastic display by Louis Price.  The talented, diminutive left-hander from Avon, produced another scintillating display to capture the three titles open to him in a repeat performance from the same tournament one year ago.

Price was supreme as he won the Under-14 Boys’ Singles on Saturday and then followed this up with the Under-16 and Under-18 titles on Sunday. Ironically, the toughest match that Price faced was in the lower age group, the under-14 final. After winning his group and then eliminating Alex Howard, Adam Palmer and Victor Ramirez Rioja in the semi-final, Price was made to fight all the way in the final against Bertie Kelly, the young Somerset player having led 2-1 at one time. Harry Yip was the other defeated semi-finalist in the event after having put paid to the run of Cippenham’s Pranav Gudipati in the quarter-final.

The final of the under-16 event was a little more straightforward for Price winning 3-0. However, the host club’s Shae Thakker did put up quite a fight losing each game by the narrowest of margins 16-14, 11-9, 13-11. The beaten semi-finalists in this event were Jaiden Aulakh and Daniel Broner.

Louis Price completed his triple title winning spree later on Sunday in the Under-18 Boys’ Singles. After the groups, Ben Williams was the first to feel Price’s power and this was followed up by a repeat win over Aulakh in the semi-final. Waiting for him in the final was third seed Jared Schaller who, after beating Broner, surprised second seed Shae Thakker in the semi. However, despite taking the first game to deuce, Schaller was ultimately no match for the speedy Price in the final, losing 3-0.

The tournament commenced on Saturday morning with the under-12 events. The Boys’ Singles was won by Harry Yip following a close final with Tom Powlesland who took the first and fourth games but ran out of steam in the fifth. The semi-finalists were Adam Palmer and Sam Taylor while Cippenham’s Rudii Richards made a mark by clinching victory in the consolation event.

The counterpart Under-12 Girls’ Singles proved to be a major success for the host club with two of its players meeting in the final. Anna Piercey’s greater experience won the day over newcomer Rachel Iles while the semi-finalists were Sasha Lewis and Lydia Wealands-White.

The other three girls’ events were all played as single groups. The under-14 winner was Nadia Zoppos with Kirsty Maull runner-up. In the under-16s the roles were virtually reversed with Maull being the winner, Isobella Khan runner-up and Zoppos only third. Khan was once more runner-up in the under-18s which was won by Christelle Rajapaksa.

The tournament, which attracted a decent entry, especially for the Saturday, was organised and refereed by Ken Phillips.

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