Sweeney claims county crown

Laurence Sweeney, right, and father Earl both picked up trophies at the county championships in Warwick.
Laurence Sweeney, right, and father Earl both picked up trophies at the county championships in Warwick.

Laurence Sweeney of St George’s led the local charge in the county championships at St Nicholas Leisure Centre in Warwick on Sunday.

After overcoming club-mate Mark Jackson in the semi-final of the men’s event, Sweeney beat Birmingham Smithfield’s Michael Browne - winner of the over-50s’ title - to six, ten and ten in the final.

Browne had earlier edged past 15-year-old Timmy Cooper (Lillington Free Church) in his last-four clash, showing his experience to win the fifth 11-7.

Kate Hughes of Colebridge took the women’s crown, beating young club-mate Lisa Rinnhofer in three sets.

Hughes went on to claim another two senior crowns, combining with Rugby’s Jo Outhwaite to take the women’s doubles after a thrilling five-setter against Rinnhofer and Free Church’s Livvy Fletcher.

She then partnered Phoenix’s Ryan Stockham to account for Cooper and Fletcher in straight games.

Colebridge junior Sam Henderson took the men’s doubles title with club-mate Ed Lynn, defeating the Smithfield duo of Browne and Pat Glynn in four close games.

Simon Griew of WCC won the men’s restricted competition in five against Ron Vose of St George’s and Rugby youngster Milly Bradshaw played brilliantly to win the women’s equivalent from Nicola Francis of Banbury.

The junior boys competition saw three Free Church players in the last four.

Lee Dorning lost in four to Henderson, who went on to beat Sam Weaving, a surprise victor over Cooper, in the final.

Fletcher found herself two down to Rinnhofer in the junior girls’ final but clawed her way back to claim victory in five.

The boys’ doubles went to Cooper and Dorning against Henderson and Weaving while Bradshaw and Fletcher edged out Church’s Eve Briscoe and Jenny Singleton in the girls’.

Lewis Singleton of Free Church sprung something of a surprise in the under-15 boys’, playing scintillating table tennis to beat club-mates Jack Green in the semi-final and number one seed Adam Cofler in the final.

Lewis’ twin Jenny staged a valiant attempt to make it a family double but went down to Rinnhofer in the under-15 girls’ final.

It was an all-Free Church affair in the final of the under- 13 boys’, with Robbie Fitchford winning in four against Ricardo Bolanos in a match that promises much for the county’s future.

Sophie Rinnhofer (Colebridge) won the under-13 girls’ title from Church’s Milly Green, having earlier taken the under-11 title from Church’s Erin Darwen.

The under-11 boys’ crown went Free Church’s way, Nicholas Ho defeating William Chen of Rugby in four in the final.

The Junior Boys restricted Final went to five as Jack Green just nailed club-mate James Robertson.

More local success came in the veterans’ event where Jackson overcame Hamstead’s Stephen Robinson.

Jackson also took the veterans’ doubles alongside Earl Sweeney.

Pat Glynn shaded the over- 60s’ final against WCC’s Phil Paine and Terry Cooper of Streetly won the over-70s’ against Will Fletcher (St George’s).