Leinster v Belfast Match – 2016 Report

The 2016 Leinster League Teams

The Leinster League v Belfast & District League match took place in PingZone Table Tennis Club on Saturday 27th February 2016.

  • Team 1: John Dennis, Romain Barth, Stephen Keenan
  • Team 2: Marta Zareba, Brian Keenan, Eddie Hockey
  • Team 3: Igor Krasnyanskyy, Jack O’Meara, Dave Gibbons

Anyone who came to see this match was in for a treat. The table tennis was both brilliant and exciting.


Belfast’s Phil Jamison got off to a good start winning the first match against Romain Barthin in the 4th set. John Dennis was up next against Gary Crawford and a tough match it was with John winning it in the 5th set. Stephen Keenan won the next against Rodney Mc Kirgen in straight sets to give Leinster the lead at 2-1. The real clincher came for Leinster in the next match. John was up against Phil and at 2 sets all and John down 1/7 in the 5th set it looked like Belfast were about to even up the score but John was not about to give up and came back to 7/9 and eventually won it 12/10 which gave us a 3-1 lead and definitely the turning point in the match. Romain beat Rodney in the 4th set and Leinster now led 4-1. Stephen had a real close match against Gary losing 4/11 in the 5th set. John again saved the day winning another tight match against Rodney 7/11, 12/10, 16/14, 11/9. The last two matches were shared and both were 5 set matches which just showed how tight the match actually was. Result: 6-3


Again Belfast had the better start with Wayne Crawford beating Brian Keenan in 4 sets. Marta made easy work against Tiago Souto winning it in straight sets making it 1-1. Eddie Hockey was on next against Martin Pickles and his funny rubbers. Eddie won the first two sets both 11/6 but unfortunately the rubbers got the better of him and lost the next three. Wayne came from two sets down against Marta to win in the 5th set. Two more five setters followed with Brian losing 9/11 to Martin and Eddie winning 11/8 against Tiago. Belfast now led 4-2. Martin’s rubbers came into play once again with Marta losing in the 4th set giving the match to Belfast. The last two matches were played anyway and were shared. Result 3-6


As in last year’s match this Division 3 one was a real nail biter. Again Belfast got the better start with Brian Calvert beating Jack O’Meara 10/12 in the 5th set despite Jack having won the first two sets and leading 10/8 in the 5th. Belfast came out tops again with Ivor Kirk beating Igor in a very close three setter 11/13, 8/11 and 12/14. Dave Gibbons got Leinster’s first win beating Kris Donagy in straight sets. Leinster won the next two with Igor beating Brian in a five set match and Jack beating Kris in four sets to give Leinster the lead at 3-2. Leinster didn’t have the lead for long as Ivor beat Dave in the next match in the 4th set and Kris beat Igor in another really close five setter to now give the lead of 4-3 to Belfast. The pressure was now all on Dave who had to play Brian next. He lost the first set but came back and won the next three. All down to Jack as the score was now 4-4 and fair play to him he came out and won his match in straight sets. Result  5-4

The player of the day went to Wayne Crawford for his three very close wins and he was presented with the Pat O’Brien individual trophy.

Well done to all the players for giving us such an enjoyable day of table tennis and to Roman for providing Pingzone club to us free of charge.

– Terri Mc Keon

  • Norman Nabney

    I was a bit disappointed with part of Teri’s report on the match. I wasn’t there but have spoken to some of the players involved. Teri has indicated that Martin Pickles’ “funny rubbers” were the reason why Belfast won the Div 2 match. When Martin lost the first 2 games against Eddie was he using “ordinary” rubbers and did he then illegally change for the last 3 games? Pimples outwards are an accepted legal type of rubber and honestly it’s about 30 years out of date to blame these for wins and losses. Experienced players should all have learned to play with or against these rubbers, which are no longer “funny”.
    In relation to the Division 3 match I note that Jack O’Meara was crucial to the Leinster win. He won 2 of his 3 matches, including the vital one at 4-4. Maybe this was also just down to his “funny rubber”. Or maybe, like Martin, he was just too good for his opponents.
    What do you think?