What an event, 75 people beating last years numbers, a full car park and a queue for a go on the table, Tollgate TTC in Colchester hosted Colchester & District Table Tennis League 'Bat and Chat' event in celebration of National #tabletennisday
With a truly eclectic mix of people and playing standards from the Colchester Legend and 9 Times Mens Singles Champion Dave Cole to Table Tennis England #thisgirlcan ambassador Lauren James, from League President Mick Buckley and Chairman John Andrews to Alasdair, Claudia and Poppy Jones for their first try at Table Tennis it really was an amazing evening for Table Tennis.
Cadets, Juniors, Seniors, Vets and Super Vets all in attendance the tables were packed at the beginning of the evening but we soon got a mass Round The Table going with 3 or 4 on each side, all 10 tables were rocking.
Elsewhere in the hall the robot challenge was in full effect and Multiballing was also full as was the Design Your Bat area and the colouring pencils... fantastic to see so many parents either playing with their kids or there to support them.
For me it was a special day, #thisgirlcan ambassador was back on the Table Tennis table after an enforced time away, Lauren as always a superstar and an ever promoting table tennis enthusiast.
To see my Dad Ken James, there too with our League President Mick Buckley with a combined age of over 160 was also a fantastic sight as was the return of the all conquering Civil Service Team who held the old First Division title in the Colchester League (before the Premiership was added) from 1994 to the last time we were all together in 2001, Dave Cole, Steve Edmonds, Andy Wadling and myself, together again for a 'selfie'...
As the evening wore on and a few of the youngster disappeared we ran a Rik Doubles Top Table with everyone picking a partner and the battle commenced, with weary legs and minds we finished the evening with a mass Top Table with everyone who was left staggering around, congratulation to Roger Hance for winning that...
Massive thanks as always go to a few people... Colchester League Committee for helping put this event on, Martyn Green for the use of Tollgate over a coaching evening, John Andrews for managing the robot and Gracie Edwards for her multi balling skills.
Overall a great day and I really hope that it has stirred something in you to want to go and play in one of the many table tennis clubs near you.
If you get the bug of table tennis it really can be quite hard to shift... ask Mick and Ken...