UK Racketlon

Written by James Pope

Hertfordshire Racketlon Open 2010 - Results & Report*

The 2010 Hertfordshire Racketlon Open is now over. Congratulations to the elite class winners, Stuart Hobden & Sarah Lochrie. For the full results spreadsheet, summary of the results & images from the event, please read on...*Full Report now available

Images - Facebook event

Full Results Spreadsheet - Hertfordshire Racketlon Open

Next event - British Racketlon Championships - 1st May 2010, Gosling Sports Park, Welwyn Garden City

Firstly, a special thanks to the local organiser John Garland for yet another great event, with four singles categories competing on the Saturday & three categories on the Sunday.

Results Summary (Report will Appear Further Below) - Full results to follow!

Mens Elite (A)

Winner: Stuart Hobden, Runner-up: Jeremy Krzystyniak , Third: Chrs McKee

Mens Advanced (B)

Winner: Richard Boreham, Runner-up: Karl Albon, Third: Mark Johnson

Mens Amateur (C) - SUNDAY

Winner: Kurt Beaumont, Runner-up: Andrew Taylor, Third: Tim Holtam


Womens Elite (A)

Winner: Sarah Lochrie, Runner-up: Carol Whittington, Third: Gemma Sgariglia

Mens Over 45 - SUNDAY 

Winner: Graham Norton, Runner-up: Stuart Foster, Third: Lucky Sagoo

Boys Under 16

Winner: Charlie Bennett, Runner-up: Thomas Stewart, Third: Julian Farthing


Boys/Girls Under 13 - SUNDAY

Winner: Joseph Osborne , Runner-up: Christian Farrugia, Third: Sam Tomlinson




Hertfordshire Open Report

The Hertfordshire Racketlon Open is only stage 4 of a full English & Welsh Racketlon Tour 2010 – the next stop being the British Racketlon Championships at Gosling Sports Park, Welwyn Garden City. See the 'Events' & 'Tournament Entry' pages for further details and entry to future tournaments.

Hobden destroys field with 2 sport strength

Racketlon is a funny game of profiles. Jeremy Krzystyniak had no chance in the final after a table tennis loss of 21-9 and a badminton loss of 21-3, the match was all but over. With badminton Hobden's 3rd sport only, the writing was on the wall, with his second sport tennis to finish. The biggest factor in this tour victory (Hobden's 3rd in the last year), was his semi final win over Surrey Open champion Chris McKee. McKee relatively new to racketlon goes back to the drawing board after a 21-7 loss in tennis. This was after a great start in table tennis 6-21, a solid badminton score of 21-17 (needed to be less really) and a squash mauling of 21-7. Hobden's 1st round win against Surrey Open runner-up Mark Steedan was equally impressive.

Jennings back after badminton season

Jennings who lost to Krystyniak in the semi finals will be cursing tournament referee John Garland as had the draw been kinder, Carl may well have got his name on the trophy. A 4th place finish behind McKee is not to snarl at, but Jennings would surely fancy his chances against Hobden. Jenning's strong badminton would make the squash set key. Should this match occur at the upcoming British Championships, the profile game will play it's course. The one everyone wants to see is Jennings v Manners. Could Jennings nick the table tennis and make 10 in squash, what would he win the badminton by? All key points that could see the British Number One and World Number Two fall to the badminton specialist. Jeremy Krystiniak can also give Manners a run for his money with badminton being his 4th sport by far. The unspoken message Krystyniak gave to racketlon fans far and wide was clear "when you play guys like Jennings and Manners it doesn't matter whether you play badminton or not". The squash specialist, who also packs a punch on the ping pong table, is dangerous for anyone with a badminton speciality. Unfortunately, if he comes up against a badminton non-specialist but still looses heavily (like in the final), it's going to be a tough road back to win overall.

Lochrie starts to dominate female circuit

With Natalie Lawrence quiet since the world championships in November, Sarah Lochrie has won 2 of the 4 events this year. Lochrie who is a former national junior tennis player (20 or 30 years ago), has a formidable racketlon pedigree and will push the likes of Natalie Lawrence and Jane Cook for an England place in the future. Carol Whittington, who made her debut in last year's CSSC tournament at Redbridge Sports Centre, shows excellent improvement in taking the runner-up position. Gemma Sgariglia will be frustrated at only finishing 3rd, but the tennis coach has time to improve (particularly in squash).

Boreham v Albon - great final

The Class B final was a hotly contested encounter and Karl Albon, who is an excellent tennis player, could have taken it on another day. It was a few steps to far for the Letchworth club member who won the Class C title in last year's event. Hopefully Albon will act as an inspiration for others looking to practice tennis and other sports in a fun, competitive (slightly) environment.

Beaumont looks to play Class B

With winners from C normally moving up categories, lets see if this applies here. Andrew Taylor has entered the next competition on May 1st and looks to go one better than runner-up. 3rd place Tim Holtham took out's Doug Pether with a topsy turvy table tennis and squash game. Holtham added to his fantastic win on April 16th at the Crawley Table Tennis Senior Open (2*). See the ETTA website for more details on this fine table tennis player. With a bit of work on the other sports, this guy could be dangerous.

Juniors well supported, Vets sees Swedish Taxi win for Norton

The junior events were well supported and John Garland again introduced racketlon to the younger generation as a great way to learn new sports. A bit of racketlon trivia, 7 years ago Graham Norton, Stuart Foster, Keith Lesser & Ray Jordan made their first racketlon trip abroad to the 2003 World Championships in Gothenberg. This is where the gruesome foursome as they soon became known really found their passion for the sport. The trip was dedicated to flagging down Swedish taxis as this was particularly entertaining. Taxi drivers would approach typically Norton whilst murmuring the word Taxiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii........the word taxi seemingly lasted forever, a bit like this paragraph. The difference is in Sweden, taxi drivers actually know what a gumi-arm is, racketlon is widespread and well known in the press. This is a great challenge for the UK.

Norton beat Foster, Foster after a great start in table tennis was minus 9 going into squash. He was miming something about shuttlecocks and one wonders whether his feathers were ruffled. With Norton needing only 3 in tennis, the writing was on the wall at 12-2. Norton, sweating profusely, wiped his brow and pulled one more point out the bag. This meant the title was his and the Surrey Badminton Vets doubles specialist was all the more richer for it.

Thanks to all for a fantastic event, the next one is soon at Gosling Sports Park on May 1st. See you there!

Letchworth Open Press Officer

by Sven Taxi