U19 girls take the top honours in school final
Teens win trophy at Jack Petchey Foundation event
HAREFIELD Academy took top honours in the U19s girls category of the Jack Petchey Foundation’s London School’s Table Tennis Team Finals held at the University of East London, Sports Dock.
In the final at the University of East London, in Newham, Harefield Academy, with a team made up of Zahna Hall, Danielle Kelly, Aurora Partridge and Rachel Stone, beat Croydon Royal Russell School 7-1.
Zahna Hall, 17, said: “It feels good to know we’re the best U19 girls’ team in London. This is the first time in four years a Harefield Academy girls’ team have got this far.
“I think it’s a really good competition. It’s exciting and something to look forward to. We want to win, but it’s also about having fun.”
Sir Jack Petchey, recently knighted in the New Year’s Honours, was there to personally congratulate all the competitors, as was Team GB disability ace Daniel Bullen.
More than 160 players from schools across London gathered for the competition.
The Jack Petchey Schools’ Table Tennis Championships is a pres- tigious event which includes team and individual competitions all aimed at increasing participation and awareness of table tennis in schools in London.
The project also includes the donation of indoor and outdoor table tennis tables, which also helps to increase interest in the sport.
As the project gets into its fifth year, 1,365 indoor and outdoor table tennis tables have been donated to schools in London and Essex and more than 21,000 players have taken part in the competitions.
Sara Sutcliffe, chief executive of Table Tennis England, said: “Thousands of young people have become more active, learned new skills and made new friends thanks to the Jack Petchey Foundation’s support of table tennis in London and Essex.
“The table donation scheme and the team and individual competitions have taken the profile of the sport and the standard of play to new heights. They have created a lasting legacy and we look forward to thousands more youngsters benefiting from the programme in years to come.”
n ‘EXCITING TOURNAMENT’: U19 Girls winners Harefield Academy