Double delight for Ellicott and Ho at Free Church tournament

Under-13 gold winner Daniel Stone, centre.
Under-13 gold winner Daniel Stone, centre.

Lillington Free Church’s third tournament of the season at St Nicholas Park Leisure Centre was over-subscribed and produced a high standard of play, writes Phil John.

In the morning events, Colebridge’s Worcestershire player Hawley Ellicott battled his way through the group stages and the quarter-finals to face County Council stalwart Nilton Green in the last four, triumphing in a close contest.

He then went on to beat Free Church’s Warwickshire junior Jack Green in the final. Green had overcome Oxford’s Pawel Zukowski in his semi-final.

The junior event was played as a round-robin with Alex Bowe of Rugby proving to be top dog, with Adam Stochlinski of Colebridge in the runners-up position.

Free Church’s Chris Ho opted to play in the cadet event despite being eligible for the under-13s and justified his decision by beating clubmate Joe Shrimpton in an exciting final.

In the under-13 event, Joseph Fisher of Bodicote got the better of Free Church’s Michael Khovanov in one semi-final, with Church’s Daniel Stone defeating North Newington’s George Fyfe in the other.

Stone lost the first against Fisher in the final but came through in five.

The afternoon events saw Ellicott complete the double by beating Free Church’s Sam Wiggins in the Grade A event.

Two Bodicote players reached the last four of the Grade B competition but both were to be disappointed.

Alex Boyd went down to Free Church’s number one junior girl Emily Beasley, while youngster Toby Dow fell to Warwick University’s Michael Farmer who went on to prevail in the final.

There was another trophy double in the Grade C with Ho claiming the title with victory over Ian Nethercott of the Moorgate club in Tamworth.

Thomas Waters took the improvers’ final, seeing off Archie Fyfe of North Newington, while there was an excellent entry in the beginners’ event.

Kidlington’s Weisen Zang reached one semi-final where he lost to Free Church youngster Morgan Page, while 13-year-old Chloe Ramsey from Kings Lynn made her way to the final after beating Deva Bakthisaran of Free Church.

Page then beat Ramsey 3-1 in a thrilling showpiece.

Consolation event winners: Seniors: Alex Boyd (Bodicote). Cadets: Owain Jones (Free Church). Under-13s: Harvey Wilson (Free Church. Grade A: Craig Allen (Redditch). Grade B: Alex Bowe (Rugby). Grade C: Nick Darwen (Free Church). Improvers: George Fyfe (North Newington). Beginners: Arnav Mulay (Free Church).

The second part of the Warwickshire Schools competition was held at Lawrence Sheriff School in Rugby last Thursday.

Nikit Sajiv of Myton became the under-16 champion after beating Nicholas Ho and Alex Bowe in his group.

Henry Belcher fell in the semi-final and Joshua Yarrow of Aylesford was his victim in the final.

There were only two entries in the under-19 boys’ singles with Jack Green of Bablake School qualifying for the national finals in Wolverhampton on April 27 after beating Callum Ball.