Closed Championships 2010



Darek's Double Triumph


Darek Zurowski of Carrara Polska dug deep to win an extraordinary triumph in the  League Closed Championships at Eastcote. Having first of all saved match points to beat Koji Hiruto 14-12 in the fifth game of a tense semi-final, he then went all the way against Costas Papantoniou in the final, coming back from 4-8 down in the deciding fifth game to win it 11-9.


In front of a large crowd, including the guest of honour, ETTA Chairman Alex Murdoch, Darek thus won his first Men’s Singles title and became the sixth different winner in seven years. His game against Costas (a five-times former champion) was characterised by some stout defending and some exquisite counter attacking from towards the back of the court, whilst Costas stood at the table and favoured heavy topspin attack. It was ding-dong ping-pong as the lead changed hands regularly, with both players trying to ‘psyche’ the other out verbally in between points.


The final was the climax of an entertaining Men’s Singles competition, which had seen a high standard of play and some surprise results, not least the emergence of Costas’ son Mikael, who reached the quarter-finals.


In the Men’s Doubles, meanwhile, Darek won his second event, in partnership with teammate Lucasz Janisiewicz. Costas was the unlucky loser again, this time, along with Mikael, going down 12-10 in a dramatic fifth game.


Going for a hat-trick of titles, Darek teamed up with Klaudia Sladkowska in the Mixed Doubles, which featured a strong entry this year. Last year’s winners were thwarted, however, by an excellent performance from DHS Greenhouse Progress’ Ikue Humphrey and Koji Hiruto, who prevailed by three games to love.


Ikue had a good tournament, proving too strong for Hillingdon’s Shabnam Yasmeen in the Ladies’ Singles final. But Shabnam took revenge in the Ladies’ Doubles, where she and Tish Dasani were surprise winners over Ikue and Fanny Speck by three games to one.


The junior events witnessed a high standard of play – Mikael Papantoniou showed his class with a victory in the Junior Boys’ Singles over Krisanth Thamaratnam. But there was revenge in the doubles for Krisanth, whose game mixes sound backhand defence with forehand agression quite unusually for a junior. He and Justin Ho outplayed the partnership of Mikael and Pritesh Kakad.


In the Intermediate Singles (Divisions 3 and below) and Minor Singles (Divisions 6 and 7), there were first-ever Finals Night victories for Dumitru Toma (Sudbury Hill) and Ray Raymond (Maccabi) respectively.


Thanks go to the Eastcote and Lowlands clubs, where the tournament was held, to the organising committee, and above all to Steve Dunn, who once again organised an excellent championships, well-supported by over 100 competitors.




Closed Championships scoreboard


Men's singles

Semi-finals: Costas Papantoniou (Apollo) bt Steve Buck (Vagabonds) 11-9, 11-9, 11-9; Darek Zurowski (Carrera Polska) bt Koji Hirota (DHSG Progress) 13-11, 6-11, 8-11, 11-7, 14-12

Final: Darek bt Costas 5-11, 12-10, 8-11, 11-8, 11-9 

Ladies’ singles

Final: Ikue Humphrey (DHSG Progress) bt Shabnam Yasmeen (Hillingdon) 11-4, 11-3, 11-3

Men's doubles

Final: Lucasz Janisiewicz & Darek Zurowski (Carrara Polska) bt Mikael & Costas Papantoniou (Apollo) 11-9, 7-11, 11-7, 2-11, 12-10

Ladies’ Doubles

Final: Tish Dasani & Shabnam (Hillingdon) bt Ikue & Fanny Speck (Eastcote) 12-10, 11-7, 6-11, 12-10

Mixed doubles

Final: Ikue & Koji Hirota (DHSG Progress) bt Klaudia Szadkowska & Darek Zurowski (Carrera Polska) 12-10, 11-3, 15-13 

Veteran Men’s Singles

Final: Costas bt Radavan Živković (Lowlands) 11-9, 11-8, 11-3

Veterans Ladies’ Singles

Final: Sally Bax (Sudbury Hill) bt Sue Merican (Eastcote) 11-6, 11-8, 6-11, 11-9

Intermediate singles

Final: Dumitru Toma (Sudbury Hill) bt Howard Carter (Headstone) 11-6, 11-9, 11-7

Minor singles

Final: Raymond Raymond (Maccabi) bt Paul Kumaraswamy (LCNL) 11-8, 12-10, 11-7

Junior boys’ singles

Final: Mikael Papantoniou bt Krisanth Tharmaratnam (WHTTC)10-12, 11-9, 12-10, 11-5

Cadet boys singles

Final: Aaron Zolnai-Lucas (Vagabonds) bt Lucas Papantoniou 7-11, 11-6, 11-9, 4-11, 11-7

Junior doubles

Final: Krisanth and Justin Ho (Kenton) bt Mikael and Pritesh Kakad (U Progress) 5-11, 11-4, 15-13, 11-6


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