Results from the National Schools Competition at St. Paul’s


National Schools’ Championships 2017
St. Paul’s School, 27-30 March 2017

Organiser Peter King reports : This year’s tournament was again played over four days with three age-groups; nineteen schools were represented, and it was great to see a strong showing from north of the border, if sad to have no representatives from a few schools with rich history in the competition. 140 competitors in all took to the courts, with the U14 competition restored to a full entry of 48, and although Winchester were again the dominant force across the senior and colts’ competitions there were finalists from a further ten establishments. The standard of play was very high, with some memorable fives at all levels. And it is probably fair to say that the camaraderie of the occasion, on and off court, has rarely been better.

The Open singles tournament went largely with the seeding in the early stages, although mention should be made of Archie McCreath (Fettes) who removed the top Pauline in the knockout. In the final Tom Kidner repeated his success in the West of England, leaving Albert Song his team-mate, indeed House-mate, at Winchester, a rueful runner-up for the second time. Only one game in the singles went to three games, but what a game that was, with Alec Younger (Winchester) and Ben Kirwan (Alleyn’s) extending their stay on court 6 well beyond the two-hour mark as Ben survived 11-12, 11-9, 11-3! Ben also led early in his semi-final against Albert, but after conceding the first game 11-12 was unable to produce the goods for a second time. The overall standard was encouragingly high, and many of the plate quarter-finalists might in other years have graced the last 16 of the main competition. The plate was won by Isaac Hudis of St Paul’s, and the second plate went to Advait Manur of Malvern, both of whom can look back on a season of great improvement. In the doubles Winchester I came through as champions, defeating their Winchester colleagues in a splendid three-game final, remarkable for the powerful hitting and tremendous agility of both pairs.

The Colts’ singles event was always a matter of whether anyone could get close to the top four seeds; and the answer was a fairly emphatic “no”! However, in the semi-final Alex Poyntz faced a repeat of his West of England semi-final against Taylor McGuire (Sedbergh) and again it was three long games before Alex finally emerged to challenge his Winchester partner Stepan Matvienko, who proved the more durable and sharper in a two-game final. The plate finals were a mini-match between Whitgift and Merchant Taylors’, Daniel Ahmed winning the first for Whitgift and Jamie Graham the second for MTS – honours even! In the doubles Marlborough (Harry Powell & Oscar Waters) fought their way past Winchester II to reach the final, but ultimately the singles finalists, despite various aches and pains, proved too strong. Ahmed completed a double for Whitgift in the plate, in company with Philip Lam.

The U14 tournament arrives on the third day and proved extremely enjoyable for all who took part. The favourites were those who had contested the U13 event last year, and it is certainly noticeable that those with only one term’s fives behind them nowadays struggle to match those with more experience. St Olave’s had dominated the 2016 tournament but by no means had it their own way this year, as only their top two reached the main singles knockout among representatives from seven other schools. The newcomers from Merchiston Castle showed great talent in reaching the semi-finals, where Max Layton was well beaten by Isaac Jochim (St Olave’s) and Tom Macintosh lost to current U13 champion Gwydion Wiseman (Alleyn’s), but only after a titanic struggle to 7-7. The final was an epic, with Wiseman going very close but the older Jochim’s strength and retrieving taking him to a 12-11 second game and an eventually unassailable 7-0 lead in the third. The two met again in the doubles final, and again Alleyn’s had their moments, winning the middle game with deceptive ease, but in the end it was steady work by Yoann Bleunven that probably tipped the balance in the Olavians’ favour.

Many thanks to all involved in organisation and support, especially Ian Jackson, who again shouldered the burden of managing the U14 events, to parents, fanclubs, and some extremely devoted staff without whom the school players would not be developing such an obvious love of the game and skilful enjoyment.

Full results below photographs.

U16 and U18 champions from Winchester College

U16 and U18 champions from Winchester College

Players from St. Olave's with the President of the RFA

Title-winners from St. Olave’s with the President of the RFA


Open Singles

Pool A: 1st T.Kidner (Winchester); 2nd W.Rentoul (Alleyn’s); 3rd A.Manur (Malvern); 4th Q. Gueroult (St Paul’s)
Pool B: 1st C.Low (Whitgift); 2nd C.Barnett (Merchant Taylors’); 3rd L.Conte (Marlborough)
Pool C: 1st D.Whitham (St Paul’s) 2nd C.Cabburn (Blundell’s); 3rd K.Jenkins (Edinburgh Academy)
Pool D: 1st P.Kullavanijaya (Winchester); 2nd M.Suddaby (Rugby); 3rd C.Dowie (Edinburgh Academy)
Pool E: 1st J.Sumner (Bedford Modern); 2nd L.Wells (St Paul’s); 3rd G.Sperling (Fettes)
Pool F: 1st M.Cheveley (St Paul’s); 2nd G.Barnard (Alleyn’s); 3rd B.Ames (Blundell’s)
Pool G: 1st A.Tudor (Malvern); 2nd A.Ahuja (St Paul’s)
Pool H: 1st M.Evans (St Paul’s); 2nd J.Maclaurin (Blundell’s); 3rd A.Naumenko (Alleyn’s)
Pool I: 1st A.McCreath (Fettes); 2nd H.Anbukumar (Whitgift); 3rd C.Beswick (Marlborough)
Pool J: 1st A.Younger (Winchester); 2nd I.Hudis (St Paul’s); 3rd W.Hanley (Tonbridge)
Pool K: 1st B.Kirwan (Alleyn’s); 2nd W.Stevens (Bradfield); 3rd R.Quantrill (Edinburgh Academy)
Pool L: 1st J.Hanton (Alleyn’s); 2nd H.Jackson (St Paul’s); 3rd P.Dickinson (Eastbourne)
Pool M: 1st A.Chai (Blundell’s); 2nd B.Yass (St Paul’s); 3rd A.Rigg (Marlborough)
Pool N: 1st V.Shirokiy (Rugby); 2nd J.Mann (Edinburgh Academy); 3rd A.Perry (Tonbridge)
Pool O: 1st A.Song (Winchester); 2nd J.Davies (St Paul’s); 3rd D.Burton (Whitgift)

Round 1: Whitham beat Low 11-8, 11-0; Kullavanijaya beat Sumner 11-0, 11-3; Tudor beat Cheveley 11-7, 11-5; McCreath beat Evans 12-10, 11-9; Kirwan beat Younger 11-12, 11-9, 11-3; Hanton beat Chai 11-1, 11-3; Song beat Shirokiy 11-0, 11-4
Quarter-finals: Kidner beat Whitham 11-6, 11-4; Tudor beat Kullavanijaya 11-6, 11-8; Kirwan beat McCreath 11-2, 11-8; Song beat Hanton 11-4, 11-8
Semi-finals: Kidner beat Tudor 11-2, 11-6; Song beat Kirwan 12-11, 11-3
Final: Kidner beat Song 11-4, 11-8
First plate: Hudis (St Paul’s)
Second plate: Manur (Malvern)

Open Doubles

Preliminary round: St Paul’s II beat Edinburgh Academy II 11-2, 11-0; Rugby beat St Paul’s V 11-2, 11-2; Blundell’s II beat Tonbridge 3-11, 12-11, 11-4.; St Paul’s III beat Marlborough 12-10, 11-4; Alleyn’s II beat Merchant Taylors’ 11-6, 11-8
1st round: Winchester I beat Alleyn’s III 11-0, 11-0; Fettes beat St Paul’s IV 11-8, 11-0; Malvern beat St Paul’s II 11-6, 12-11; Alleyn’s  I beat Rugby 11-3, 11-3; Winchester II beat Blundell’s II 11-1, 11-0; St Paul’s III beat Edinburgh Academy I 11-3, 11-6; Alleyn’s II beat Whitgift I 11-5, 11-3; St Paul’s I  beat Blundell’s I 11-1, 11-3
Quarter-finals: Winchester I beat Fettes 11-4, 11-9; Alleyn’s I beat Malvern 11-2, 11-9; Winchester II beat St Paul’s III 11-0, 11-0; St Paul’s I beat Alleyn’s II 11-4, 11-2
Semi-finals: Winchester I beat Alleyn’s I 11-3, 11-7; Winchester II beat St Paul’s I 11-6, 11-8
Final: Winchester I (Kullavanijaya/Song) beat Winchester II (Kidner/Younger) 11-8, 4-11, 11-4
Plate: Whitgift I (Anbukumar/Low)

Colts Singles

Pool A: 1st S.Matvienko (Winchester); 2nd C.Jobson (St Paul’s); 3rd M.Gill (Alleyn’s); 4th C.Crooke (Tonbridge)
Pool B: 1st E.Townshend (Merchant Taylors’); 2nd N.Jerome (Whitgift); 3rd W.Meredith (Alleyn’s)
Pool C: 1st H.Gujadhur (Winchester); 2nd M.Scoczylas (St Paul’s); 3rd A.Lundie (Edinburgh Academy)
Pool D: 1st H.Powell (Marlborough); 2nd S.Fraser (Winchester); 3rd T.Peel (Edinburgh Academy)
Pool E: 1st L.Odgers (St Paul’s); 2nd D.Ahmed (Whitgift); 3rd J.Graham (Merchant Taylors’)
Pool F: 1st J.Drabble (Rugby); 2nd M.Henry (Winchester); 3rd G.Gibbs (Blundell’s)
Pool G: 1st A.Cochrane (Alleyn’s); 2nd B.Mercer (Sherborne); 3rd C.Clark (Edinburgh Academy)
Pool H: 1st T.Mc Guire (Sedbergh); 2nd D.Percival (Winchester); 3rd H.Harvey (Sherborne)
Pool I: 1st S.Kendrick (Whitgift); 2nd H.Street (Tonbridge); 3rd G.Ward-Jackson (St Paul’s)
Pool J: 1st W.Hirth (Alleyn’s); 2nd V.Matthews (Merchant Taylors’); 3rd D.Troup (Edinburgh Academy)
Pool K: 1st B.Kullavanijaya (Winchester); 2nd A.Mehta (Rugby); 3rd B.Burgess (Tonbridge)
Pool L: 1st K.Parsapour (St Paul’s); 2nd H.Turner (Alleyn’s); 3rd R.Hodgson (Edinburgh Academy)
Pool M: 1st S.Bagnell (Winchester); 2nd Z.Murphy (Merchant Taylors’); 3rd W.Redgate (Tonbridge)
Pool N: 1st A.Poyntz (Winchester); 2nd O.Waters (Marlborough); 3rd P.Lam (Whitgift); 4th D.Jourdan (Edinburgh Academy)

Round 1: Townshend beat Gujadhur 11-2, 11-1; Odgers beat Powell 11-0, 11-6; Cochrane beat Drabble 11-0, 11-5; McGuire beat Kendrick 11-1, 11-1; Hirth beat Kullavanijaya 11-1, 12-10; Bagnell beat Parsapour 11-2, 11-2
Quarter-finals: Matvienko beat Townshend 11-3, 11-0; Cochrane beat Odgers 11-2, 11-0; McGuire beat Hirth 11-5, 11-5; Poyntz beat Bagnell 11-3, 11-9
Semi-finals: Matvienko beat Cochrane 11-1, 11-4; Poyntz beat McGuire 7-11, 11-9, 11-8
Final: Matvienko beat Poyntz 11-3, 11-6
First plate: Ahmed (Whitgift)
Second plate: Graham (Merchant Taylors’)

Colts Doubles

Preliminary round: Merchant Taylors’ II beat Edinburgh Academy III 11-1, 11-0; Winchester IV beat Edinburgh Academy II 11-7, 11-12, 11-9; Tonbridge beat St Paul’s III 11-1, 11-6; St Paul’s II beat Whitgift II 11-7, 5-11, 11-9; Winchester III beat Tonbridge II 11-5, 11-4; Blundell’s beat Alleyns’s II 11-3, 11-6
First Round: Winchester I beat Merchant Taylors’ II 11-2, 11-5; Rugby beat St Paul’s I 11-1, 11-1; Alleyn’s I beat Winchester IV 11-3, 11-2; Whitgift I beat Tonbridge 12-11 12-10; St Paul’s II beat Edinburgh Academy I 11-7, 9-11, 11-3; Marlborough beat Winchester III 11-2, 11-8; Merchant Taylors’ I beat Sherborne 11-3, 11-6; Winchester II beat Blundell’s 11-2, 11-0
Quarter-finals: Winchester I beat Rugby 11-0, 11-1; Alleyn’s I beat Whitgift I 11-4, 11-9; Marlborough beat St Paul’s II 11-4, 11-6; Winchester II beat Merchant Taylors’ I 11-6, 11-9
Semi-finals: Winchester I beat Alleyn’s I 11-5, 11-0; Marlborough beat Winchester II 11-3, 11-8
Final: Winchester I (Matvienko/Poyntz) beat Marlborough (Powell/Waters) 11-3, 11-0
Plate: Whitgift II (Ahmed/Lam)

Under 14 Singles

Pool A: 1st I.Jochim (St Olave’s); 2nd Kottler (Marlborough); 3rd D.Alvaris (Merchant Taylors’)
Pool B: 1st S.Mahendran (Alleyn’s); 2nd D.Arjun (St Paul’s); 3rd W.Bucknell (Blundell’s)
Pool C: 1st A.Malik (St Paul’s); 2nd M.Mulvey (Merchiston Castle); 3rd M.Jackson (Sedbergh)
Pool D: 1st A.Lewis (Tonbridge); 2nd A.Shah (Merchant Taylors’); 3rd M.Chibber (St Olave’s)
Pool E: 1st Macpherson-Petermann (Marlborough); 2nd R.Patel (Winchester); 3rd B.Philpot (Tonbridge)
Pool F: 1st M.Layton (Merchiston Castle); 2nd J.Kirwan (Alleyn’s); 3rd A.Choi (St Paul’s)
Pool G: 1st Z.Bub (Merchant Taylors’); 2nd Chetwood (Marlborough)
Pool H: 1st B.Pymont (St Paul’s); 2nd O.Knight (Tonbridge); 3rd J.Exley (Bradfield)
Pool I: 1st Y.Bleunven (St Olave’s); 2nd R.Nolan (Tonbridge); 3rd A.Booth (Sedbergh)
Pool J: 1st B.Ames (Blundell’s); 2nd F.Harrison (St Paul’s); 3rd J.Jobling (Merchant Taylors’)
Pool K: 1st Z.Taylor-Schindler (Alleyn’s); 2nd Peck (Marlborough); 3rd J.Lumby (Winchester)
Pool L: 1st T.Macintosh (Merchiston Castle); 2nd D.Keren (Merchant Taylors’); 3rd T. Magalhaes (St Paul’s)
Pool M: 1st Mayne (Marlborough); 2nd K.Redfern (Winchester); 3rd L.Jopling (St Paul’s)
Pool N: 1st J.Parker (Tonbridge); 2nd A.Sofat (St Paul’s); 3rd H.Rackham (Blundell’s)
Pool O: 1st B.Afshar (Merchiston Castle); 2nd V.Prashra (St Olave’s); 3rd J.Cameron (Merchant Taylors’)
Pool P: 11st G.Wiseman (Alleyn’s); 2nd A. van Lanschot (St Paul’s); 3rd Cotterell (Marlborough)

Round 1: Jochim beat Mahendran 11-4; Malik beat Lewis 12-11; Layton beat Macpherson-Petermann 11-3; Pymont beat Bub 11-2; Ames beat Bleunven 11-8; Macintosh beat Taylor-Schindler 11-0; Mayne beat Parker 12-11; Wiseman beat Afshar 11-0
Quarter-finals: Jochim beat Malik 11-1; Layton beat Pymont 11-4; Macintosh beat Ames 11-9; Wiseman beat Mayne 11-0
Semi-finals: Jochim beat Layton 11-0; Wiseman beat Macintosh 11-7
Final: Jochim beat Wiseman 4-11, 12-11, 11-6
First plate: Mulvey (Merchiston Castle)
Second plate: Chibber (St Olave’s)

Under 14 Doubles

1st round: Merchant Taylors’ II beat Marlborough III 15-10; Alleyn’s II beat Marlborough II 15-6; Merchiston Castle II beat St Paul’s III 15-3; Merchiston Castle I beat Merchant Taylors’ III 15-3; St Olave’s III beat Tonbridge II 15-13; St Paul’s IV beat Blundell’s 15-13
2nd Round: St Olave’s I beat Merchant Taylors’ II 15-2; St Paul’s II beat Winchester 15-9; Alleyn’s II beat Sedbergh 15-7; Merchiston Castle II beat Merchant Taylors’ I 15-3; Merchiston Castle I beat St Paul’s I 15-3; Alleyn’s I beat St Olave’s III 15-4; St Olave’s II beat Tonbridge I 15-3; Marlborough I beat St Paul’s IV 15-4
Quarter-finals: St Olave’s I beat St Paul’s II 15-4; Merchiston Castle II beat Alleyn’s II 15-5; Alleyn’s I beat Merchiston Castle I 15-7; St Olave’s II beat Marlborough I 15-5
Semi-finals: St Olave’s I beat Merchiston Castle II 15-5; Alleyn’s I beat St Olave’s II 15-3
Final: St Olave’s I (Bleunven/Jochim) beat Alleyn’s I (Mahendran/Wiseman) 11-7, 1-11, 11-7
Plate: Merchant Taylors’ I (Keren/Shah)