Two trophies for Clitheroe table tennis player

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A DOUBLE championship-winning table tennis player from Clitheroe admitted his two title trophies came by surprise.

Liam Bedford didn’t concede a set as he strolled to victory in the Blackburn Singles Championships at St Bede’s High School, a competition he had finished runner-up in during the previous two seasons. Then, partnered by Ronnie Pennington, he claimed doubles success at Preston’s Table Tennis Association’s annual championships..

The scratch pairing beat previous champions Dean Walmsley (Astra) and Paul Robinson, and then last year’s winners Martin Ireland (Garstang) and Andy Michnowiec in the semi-final. In the final, they easily beat Andy Clark and Graham Procter (BAC/EE) in straight sets.

The UCLan student, who is studying sports science, said: “I won every game 3-0 at the tournament in Blackburn. I had finished runner-up in the competition at Blackburn twice and I thought the players this time round were a much better standard, so I really shocked myself.

“The Preston tournament was really tough and a closely contested competition. I definitely wasn’t expecting to win that one. I really wasn’t expecting to win anything ,so I completely bettered my expectations.”

The 20-year-old, who trains both in Preston and at Hyndburn Sports Centre, has been playing the sport for six years. He will now join team-mates Martin Wyatt and Dave Kay representing East Lancashire in the Lancashire and Cheshire League on March 27th before competing in a national ETTA tournament in Blackpool in April.