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Grantham table tennis club names its Young Volunteer of the Year

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Cliffedale Chandlers Table Tennis has named Tom Konarski as its Young Volunteer of the Year.

Tom has been a valued member of the club for about six years, playing for Cadet and Junior teams, joining the club’s young leader scheme and becoming an umpire through courses run by the club.

Throughout the pandemic, Tom was almost a constant at the club’s sessions, helping the young players adapt to the new Covid regulations which needed implementing, and with their own progression within the game.

Tom Konarski receiving his club's Young Volunteer award certificate from club chairman Darran Leete. (55350336)
Tom Konarski receiving his club's Young Volunteer award certificate from club chairman Darran Leete. (55350336)

He was nominated by club chairman/coach Darran Leete for his dedication in tough times and willingness to help at events prior to the various lockdowns. Darran presented Tom with a certificate after one of the club’s sessions.

Since the easing of restrictions, Tom has been at almost every session, continuing his good work. When he has not been there, he’s been umpiring at national events across the country.

Tom will now go into a vote for National Young Volunteer held by the sport's governing body Table Tennis England in the coming months.

Upon receiving his award, Tom said: I am delighted to have been nominated and to have received a certificate, but I just wanted to show my appreciation of the time and patience the guys here at the club have given me.

"I just wanted to pay it back by giving some of my time like they have given theirs for me and the other members here.”

But the good news did not stop there for Tom. A couple days after receiving his award he was named as one of 19 English umpires for the Commonwealth Games which start on July 28 in Birmingham.

He continues a tradition of club members officiating at top level sporting events after some were involved in the London Olympics in 2012.

l Cliffedale Chandlers hold three sessions a week at The Meres leisure centre on Tuesdays (7.15-9pm), Fridays (7-9pm) and Saturdays (11.15am -1.15pm). For more information, check out the club's Facebook page @CliffedaleChandlersTTC.

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