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.
August is traditionally a quiet month in Table Tennis with no junior events taking place so Bertie entered his first senior tournament, the Hereford Open. With very little in the way of expectations for such an event he had a phenomenal run of results. His day included him beating Wales’ number one ranked U18 player and number two ranked veteran. Bertie reached the quarter final of the event eventually losing to a top 60 ranked England senior in a very tightly fought encounter.
In September, Bertie competed as a member of the brand new Somerset Sabres team in the top flight Senior British League. This is the first time Somerset has ever fielded a team at this highest level of the sport and it’s testament to Bertie’s progress as a player that he’s able to hold his own in a team of this calibre. There are only four places in a team and two of the other players are the Somerset Senior Champion and the Somerset Veteran Champion. Bertie finished the first weekend with a superb 87.5% win ratio and two player of the match awards. These results helped the team finish as the only unbeaten team and top of the division.
This season Bertie will again play for the Raiders in the Taunton Prem (which they won last season) but has also been recruited to play for Portishead in the Bristol Premier League; One of the South West’s top clubs in the top division of the top league.
October brings another busy month for Bertie which will include England training and a refocus back on to junior events to consolidate his ranking for the national events in 2019. He will be playing at the Milton Keynes Junior Open, the BATTS Super Series in Harlow and the Plymouth Junior Open. This is a pattern that will continue well into the new year.
Bertie remains, as always, very grateful for the support TS5C provides for him. Like all sports, competing at the top level is not a cheap exercise and so this support enables Bertie to compete more frequently and train harder and see improved results as a consequence.