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Table tennis season all set

Philip Hackett

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Table tennis players will make their opening rallies in the 2011 club season this week as the Barbados Table Tennis Association’s (BTTA) domestic leagues swing into action.
The Table Tennis Centre on Nursery Drive will be the hotspot for competition on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday as all three divisions in the club championship get started.
Of the 26 teams registered, eight will compete in Division 1, ten in Division 2 and eight in Division 3.
There will be a new feature this season that will see specially selected fixtures in all divisions played on a Saturday evening. This is designed to encourage greater spectator support.
The BTTA is also hoping to make greater use of the qualified umpires and referees in the association.
This season should be an exciting period for the sport as the BTTA has been awarded a grant from Olympic Solidarity in collaboration with the Barbados Olympic Association to assist in the development of a national Sport Structure for Table Tennis.
An international expert will be assigned to work with the BTTA for the next four months with the aim of developing a national structure to support annual inter-parish team and individual championships.
When the Division 2 players compete on Tuesday, Spinners will be the first to experience the return to competition of the Combined Schools, a unit sponsored by the National Sports Council.
The Cave Hill Campus will also be making its debut in Division 2 and will be up against Rising Sun.
In the other matches, Fast Loopers A will play Fast Loopers B, Barbados Defence Force will battle with Reddy Kilowatt, while the Barbados Union of Teachers (BUT) will clash with Barbados Light & Power (BL&P).
On Thursday, Fast Loopers will start the defence of their Division 1 title against newly promoted Spinners.
It should be a challenging first game for Julia Morris, Wilmont “Funk” Goddard, Chris Banfield and Charles Lovell against a handy Loopers outfit comprising Trevor Farley, Aaron Barker and Xavier Duncan.
In the other matches, it will be Scouters vs Raiders B, BL&P vs Rising Sun, and Raiders A vs BUT.
In Division 3 on Friday, Fast Loopers will take on Smashers; Rising Sun battle with Hawks; Reddy Kilowatt clash with Sharon Community Club, while BUT play Combined Schools.