TABLE TENNIS: Grantham’s Matt wins bronze at Nationals

Matt Leete on his way to a National Championships under-12 bronze medal. Photo: Alan Man.

Matt Leete on his way to a National Championships under-12 bronze medal. Photo: Alan Man.

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Matt Leete built on recent good displays at international events by winning a bronze medal at the PG Mutual National Championships at the weekend.

The Grantham 17-year-old won his two group matches, including beating his doubles partner Shaquille Webb-Dixon, in the under-21 singles to advance to the knockout stage.

Matt Leete shows off his bronze medal alongside England coach Nick Jarvis. Photo: Alan Man

Matt Leete shows off his bronze medal alongside England coach Nick Jarvis. Photo: Alan Man

There, he defeated Mitchell Jones 4-1 (11-7, 11-6, 9-11, 11-4, 11-7) in the last 16 and third seed Adam Harrison 4-3 (7-11, 12-10, 3-11, 11-7, 11-8, 8-11, 11-5) in the quarter-finals to set up a semi-final against Helshan Weerasinghe – a top 10 senior player.

But Weerasinghe proved too strong with a 4-0 (11-9, 11-2, 11-8, 11-5) victory.

However, Matt was happy with his tournament, saying: “It feels good to get a bronze, I wasn’t expecting to get that far.

“I think playing in the European tournaments has given me a lot more match practice and experience and I’m a lot more match-clever. But there’s still a lot to work on.”

Matt was eliminated in the group stage of the senior men’s singles and he and Webb-Dixon went out in the first round of the doubles. In the mixed doubles, Matt and Hannah Ward were beaten in the first round.

The event in Nottingham was for the top 32 male and female players in the English rankings and Matt went out to more experienced players in every competition.