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An emphatic win over rivals Liverpool Men’s 1st (9-8) was subsequently followed by the kind of categorical, vigorous demolishing over Leeds Metropolitan Men’s 1st (16-1) that we have now come to expect. At the end of the hard-fought BUCS league season, Lancaster sit firmly at the top of the table, earning themselves promotion to the Northern 1A Division.
These results come as no great surprise to those who have witnessed first hand the transformation of recent years within Lancaster University Table Tennis Club. For years the club was in dismay. Lancaster has always attracted many great (often foreign) players but holding on to them was never easy; a lack of organisation and poor facilities frequently led to a lack of interest on their behalf. Trying to field teams to play week in week out sometimes seemed more of a chore than an honour.
The revolution of the last year or two, peaking under current LUTTC President Robin Honey, has been nothing short of miraculous. Dedication, passion and the buzz and joys of playing are back. Under strong leadership the club is flourishing, with both the A and B teams currently topping both the Premier Division and Division One of the highly rated local league and the largely inexperienced C team are currently a respectable 3rd in Division Two.
The clubs internal-coaching programme is also producing a vast amount of sophisticated players; competition for places is becoming fierce.With the core of the championship winning BUCS team (Stephen Arliss, Lok Wong and Antoine Schvartz) only in their first year, LUTTC are only looking forward, hoping to make this year a platform from which to build future success upon, rather than sitting back and basking in a glorious one-off interlude of sporting triumph.
Over the next few months senior club members shall be representing the university at respected national tournaments such as the Nottingham University held BUCS individual contest and the highly regarded Blackpool and Wolverhampton Opens, rubbing shoulders with some of the countries best talent. But there’s only one thing on everyone’s minds: Bring on Roses!