Swansea Open, this year’s event saw the bar raised

Building from the success of last year’s Swansea Open, this year’s event saw the bar raised in a record number of entries across all categories but also player experience.


The Saturday saw the youthful energy and the future of table tennis with the Under 13’s, Under 11’s, Cadets, Juniors and Under 21s categories.

The U11s saw the next generation of table tennis talent battling it out in one big group. Archway Peterborough’s Li Hao Chen was undefeated in the group coming in 1st followed by his teammate Jayden Xuan Chen claiming the 2nd spot only losing to his fellow teammate. At 3rd place was Rhondda’s Dylan Williams followed by Penlan’s Timmy Muil coming at 4th place.

Another Archway player shines in the U13s, this time second seeded Lewis Wu took advantage as his fellow teammate and number one seed Zihan Li withdrawn. Jayden Xuan Chen proved too much for Penlan’s Penny Muil while Lewis Wu bested his teammate Li Hao Chen in the Semi-finals- meaning an all-Archway affair final. Lewis Wu claimed victory over Jayden Xuan Chen in three straight sets. North Gwent’s Charlie Meek claimed the plate title after beating Rhondda’s Jesse Daniel in the plate final.

The intensity ramped up in the Cadets. In the semi-final, U13 Winner Lewis Wu was bested by the first seeded Harry Street in a 5-set thriller while Austin Hibbert narrowly wins against Rhondda’s Lily Walters also in a 5-set thriller. Second seeded Austin Hibbert claimed the Cadets title after defeating an in-form Harry Street in tight sets (3-1). In the Cadet’s plate quarterfinals, Nye Evans bested the Penlan’s fast improving George Sakr; Ffion Evans defeating Jesse Daniel meaning an all-Evans battle in the 1st half of the semi-final eventually seeing the sister beating his brother in a close 5-set thriller. Ffion went on to claim the Cadets Plate title after besting Northop’s Daniel Harrison 3-1.

Toby Harwood justified his top seeding and the final looked like it would be a formality winning the first set 11-0 before an in form Darcey found her game and took the next to sets but Toby fought back again and claimed the title. Swansea University’s Musashi Lowe stormed through the junior plate finals and claiming victory over Sasha Lewis. Musashi only dropped one set against fast improving Jacob Davies of Penlan.

It was an all-Swansea University affair in the final after Jacob Evans beats Junior champion Toby Harwood (3-1) and Jie Fu Tham besting Chichester’s Joe Watkins (3-0). Jie Fu Tham claimed the U21 title after besting his own teammate Jacob in a 5 thriller. The U21 plate was dominated by the Clarke brothers with Jesse claiming the U21 plate title after beating his brother Jack in a tight 3-1 sets.


The Sunday welcomed the experienced atmosphere with the senior and veterans’ events. The men were full of drama in the Round of 16. Harry Street hands top seeded Morgan Siddley an early exit beating him (3-1); Ian Parkyn narrowly losing to last year’s Men’s runner-up Abdulaziz Al-Hajaji ( 8-11, 11-8, 9-11, 12-10, 6-11); Jacob Evans defeating Penlan’s Damian Gadzinski in tight sets ( 11-8, 17-15, 8-11, 11-7) ;North Wales’ Andy Eagles trailing beating former club President Ben Lam after 2 sets down (3-2); Swansea’s own Chris Bush besting Paul Karabardak (3-0). In the Semi-finals, Jacob Evans bests fellow teammate Abdulaziz Al-Hajaji 3-0 and Chris Bush defeating the favourite to win the Mens event, Mircea Neagu of Kingfisher 3-1. Chirs Bush also impressively defeats the U21 champion Jie Fu Tham in a 5-set thriller (7-11, 11-9, 5-11, 11-7, 11-8). An in form Chris Bush denied Jacob Evans the men’s title beating the previous champion in 3 straight sets.  Good battles were also fought in the men’s plate. Swansea University Table Tennis Club treasurer Henry Morrell narrowly defeats Penlan’s Cameron Averis in the 1st half of the semi-final (11-2, 10-12, 10-12, 11-4, 14-12). Ryan Trigg bested Cam Gear’s Jonathan Davies in the 2nd half of the semi-final (10-12, 11-9, 5-11, 11-7, 11-9).  Ryan Trigg dug deep and bested Henry Morrell, again in the 5th (7-11, 11-7, 9-11, 11-5, 11-5)

In the Women’s, Nancy Yeh records the first 3-peat champion of the tournament after winning the event in the last 2 consecutive years after besting an in-form Darcey Taylor (3-1). Ewelina Scythia proved to be too strong in the women’s plate, beating Michelle Asher comfortably (11-0,11-1,11-1) in the semi-final and Lynne Harrison (11-4, 11-3, 11-5) in the final and claiming the Women’s plate title.

Mircea Neagu stormed through the final of the Veteran’s and eventually winning after defeating Swansea’s Catherine Jones in the final (3-0). Mircea Neagu only dropped a set against Craig Henton in the Quarter-finals. Mike Fischetti defeated Wai Tut Sum 3-2 and Wim Faasen besting Mark Kinlocke 3-0). Camarthen’s Mike Fischetti claimed the veteran’s plate after defeating Wim Faasen.


A big thank you to the Referee Steve Smith and to the rest of the members of Swansea University Table Tennis Club for another successful event.


Report by Angelo Robles.