Bertie Kelly, TS5C's 13-year-old table tennis athlete, has made history by becoming Somerset’s youngest ever senior men’s champion.
He took the title at Blackbrook Sports and Leisure Centre in Taunton, beating last year’s champion, Marcin Szram, 3-2 in the final.
After his incredible last season which saw Bertie win over 20 Gold’s at top events all over the country plus a whole raft of other achievements, the new season sees Bertie move up from being an U13 to the Cadet (U15) category. Although only just 13 he entered the England U15 rankings at number 8. A great starting position he can build on over the next two years.
October 31st saw the announcement of the brand new England Table Tennis 913 Squad.
We’re delighted to announce that TS5C’s Bertie Kelly (12) was named as one of the inaugural members. The aims of the squad, which will be based at Nottingham University, are to take the brightest Table Tennis talent the country has to offer and provide them with top level coaching and prepare them for international competition.
At the recent SASP 2017 Somerset Sports Awards, table tennis star Bertie Kelly from Bridgwater received a "Highly Commended" in the TS5C Young Sportsperson category for his oustanding season.
Unfortunately he was unable to attend the awards, but he was recently presented with his certificate and cheque by TS5C Chairmain Alan Gloak.
In April, ten regions around England held championships to select their top players to compete at the National Inter-Regional Table Tennis Championships to be held at Arena Sports in Kettering. TS5C athlete Bertie Kelly comfortably secured the number on slot for the SW Boys U13 team, not dropping a single set throughout the entire event.
Bertie Kelly recently came third in the English Schools National Finals in Wolverhampton even though he was competing in a higher age group.
Two weeks before the National Championships, he is also going to be competing in the National Inter-Regional Finals where, as champion of the South West, he will compete against the nine other English regions and hopefully secure the title for the South West of top region in the country.
The first weekend of September saw Bertie compete at the Bribar Plymouth junior table tennis tournament. It was a most successful event in which Bertie won all three of the categories he entered: U13 team, U13 individual and U15 individual. As he switched schools shortly afterwards, his sporting activities were scaled back for a while, but he continued to attend a variety of tournaments and played for several teams.
Following on from becoming National Champion in the summer of 2016 Bertie was called up to represent England again (he had already played at the Six Nations in the Channel Islands back in April). This time it was to be at the European Championships in Strasbourg.