Banfield table tennis champ
Chris Banfield justified his pre-tournament status when he emerged as National Senior Games table tennis champion after a compelling final against Wilmont Goddard at the Table Tennis Centre Wednesday night.
Identified as one of the early favourites in the absence of former champion Carl Sealy, who opted not to compete, Banfield seemed to have lost some ground when he bowed to Goddard in the preliminary exchanges.
The pre-playoff result seemed likely to be repeated when Goddard recovered from a five-point deficit at 4-9 to beat Banfield in the first game 13-11.
Banfield again held the early advantage in the second game but Goddard quickly found his rhythm to draw level. So balanced were the exchanges that the scores were tied at six, seven, eight and nine. Banfield was the first to ten but a firm forehand drive by Goddard put him back on even terms with his opponent.
Goddard went ahead when Banfield pushed wide of the table but the lead was short-lived as the determined Banfield fought back. Banfield played a powerful drive through Goddard’s backhand to go one up and then completed the win at 15-13 when Goddard pushed into the net.
In the third game Banfield opened up the first meaningful lead at 7-5 and looked the sure winner with a 10-6 lead.
Goddard clawed his way back with a clever mixture of defensive chopping and crisp forehand drives, scoring four unanswered points to level the score at ten.
The tension early in game four was characterized by an ultra-cautious approach and unforced errors on the part of both players.
Banfield pulled ahead with a forehand loop and then scored three unanswered points to lead 9-5. On this occasion there would be no miraculous recover for Goddard and Banfield went on to take the game 11-7 and complete a 3-1 triumph.
Banfield had earlier defeated Wayne Branch in the quarter-final and another pre-tournament favourite, Courtney Springer, in the semi-final.
Goddard advanced by virtue of a quarter-final win over Philip Tull before beating Charles Lovell in the semis.Marguerita Felix won the women’s title by beating Maureen Pollard 11-9, 14-12, 10-12, 11-3 in the final.
Quarter Finals: Courtney Springer beat Rawle husbands 11-7, 11-7, 11-6
Chris Banfield beat Wayne Branch 11-4, 11-4, 11-4
Charles Lovell beat Jeffrey Bostic 11-8, 11-5, 15-13
Wilmont Goddard beat Philip Tull 11-8, 11-6, 11-9
Banfield beat Springer 6-11, 11-4, 11-6, 11-9
Goddard beat Lovell 11-6, 11-5, 14-12
Third Place Play off:
Springer beat Lovell 11-6, 12-9, 11-3
Women’s final: Felix beat Pollard 11-9, 14-12, 10-12, 11-3
Men’s final: Banfield beat Goddard 11-13, 15-13, 13-11, 11-7