Brian (left in the image above) was born in Wellington (1947). At the age of 12, with his father and two younger brothers, they started playing table tennis in their garage. Later at age 14 he started playing table tennis at the nearby Northland Community Centre (Wellington). The same year (1961) Brian played A Reserve Grade table tennis for the Northland Club ( with Pat Williams, Colin Brydon and Phil Tessier). The team finished 2nd in the grade with 26 points. Just 2 points behind the winner, Municipal. Brian was a right handed attacking and counter-attacking player. His main weapon was his forehand heavy loop topspin shot.
The next year the team was promoted to the Wellington A Grade. Brian was to be in a A Grade team until he retires at the end of the 1975 season. In A Grade Brian played for Northland (1962-3), Onslow (1964-66), Kilbirnie RSA (1967-73), Kilbirnie United Eagles (1974) and Kilbirnie United (1975). He won the club singles at the Northland and Kilbirnie RSA Club. Kilbirnie RSA won the A Grade in 1971 (Brian Kennedy, Adrian Lust, John Woodcock) and 1973 (Richard Lee, Adrian Lust, Brian Kennedy, Lindsay Ward, Boris Halama). In 1974 Kilbirnie United Eagles (Brian Kennedy, Adrian Lust, Lindsay Ward, Warren Mak) won the A Grade.
Kilbirnie RSA ( R Lee, A Lust, B Kennedy) won the inaugural Rothmans National Club Team Competition in 1973, beating Canterbury University in the final 8-3 at Newtown Stadium, Wellington.. The players invested the $100 prize into the Wellington Association new stadium fund.
Brian first represented Wellington as a junior (1962-65). His first match in 1962 was for the Under 16 Wellington Boys team (with Bruce Young, Ken McNatty, Neil Langley) against Hutt Valley (lost 5-7). In the Junior Boys he was ranked 5th (1963) and 1st (1965). There was no Junior Boys ranking in the 1964 Wellington Annual Report. His brother Paul was also ranked in the Wellington Junior Boys. 10th (1965), 9th (1966) 7th (1967) and 2nd (1968). Brian won the 1963 Wellington Open Under 16 Boys Singles. In 1964 he won the Wellington Open Under 18 Boys Doubles and the Wellington Senior Secondary Schools Boys Doubles (both with Brian Gregory).
Brian was ranked on the Wellington Men’s List 10th (1966), 9th (1968), 6th (1969), 5th (1970, 2nd (1971 & 1972), 3rd (1973) and 1st (1974 & 1975). He was in the Wellington Men’s Team to the NZ Teams Competition (1970-75). The 1970 team was 6th in A Grade and lost the promotion/relegaton match to Northland 2-6 to be relegated from A Grade. His Wellington Team won B Grade in 1971 and lost the promotion/relegation match to Hutt Valley 1-5. In 1972 the team won B Grade and won the promotion/relegation match against Otago 6-0 to regain A Grade status. The team was in A Grade for the next 3 years when Brian was in the team. He was in the Wellington Team the won the Croudis Shield against Hutt Valley (1972 and 1973) and the Clapshaw Shield against Canterbury (1975). He was also in the Wellington Team that won the Lower North Island Teams Tournament (Hawera) in 1973 and 1975.
Gary was born in Westport, the youngest of 3 boys. His oldest brother was Peter followed by Leon. He went to Westport North Primary School and Westport Techical High School (now Buller High School). After school he began his pharmacy studies. He was good at sports, especially table tennis and tennis, where he was a junior/senior West Coast Representative.
In 1948 he played a match against former world champion Michael (Miklos)Szabados in Westport and in 1949 played against fomerly World Champion Victor Barna in Westport.
Gary won the West Coast Open Boys Singles (1948,1949 & 1951), Men’s Singles (1953) Men’s Doubles (1951& 1953 with John Allan) and Mixed Doubles (1953 with Miss B Walsh). The Buller Open Men’s Singles (1953 & 1954), Men’s Doubles (1953 with J Allan) and Mixed Doubles (1954 with V Walker). Also the 1954 Buller Closed Men’singles and Mixed Doubles with Miss K Mooney. There was no Buller Open (1950-52) and the 1954 West Coast Open results were not received by Table Tennis NZ.
In 1955 Gary moved to Wellington and worked in 2 pharmacies in the city before moving to High Street, Lower Hutt (1961) where he remained until he retired. He joined the Onslow Table Tennis Club. He won the Onslow Club Singles Champion 3 times (1959-61) and also won the Men’s Doubles and Mixed Doubles 3 times. The Men’s Doubles was won in 1960 & 1961 with Rudd Taylor and in 1962 with Ivan Houghton. The Mixed Doubles was won in 1959 with his then wife Margaret Roselli and in 1960-61 with Madeline Hooker.
He played Wellington A Grade for Onslow. The team finished 5th (1957) 5th (1958), 4th (1959), 2nd (1958), 4th (1959), 2nd (1960) 5th (1961) and 2nd ( 1962).
Gary won reached the Quarter Finals of the 1958 NZ Men’s Singles, beating the 8th seed George Smith (Auckland) and Ron Foster (Otago) before losing to the winner Bob Jackson (Auckland). He was ranked Number 9 on the NZ Men’s Ranking List that year. In 1959 He won the Hutt Valley Open Men’s Singles defeating John Crossley (Wgtn) 3-2 (21-23 21-14 15-21 21-19 21-17). In the 1959 North Island Men’s Doubles Final Gary and Roy Lea (Wgtn) lost to Murray Dunn/John Crossley (Wgtn) 0-3 ( 15-21 19-21 19-21). In 1961he won the Hutt Valley Open Mixed Doubles with Val Smythe (Wgtn).
Gary was ranked on the Wellington Men’s ranking list 6 times (1957 (9) 1958 (3) 1959 (3) 1960 (3) 1961 (2) and 1962 (6). He was selected in the Wellington Men’s Team to the NZ Championships (1958-61). In 1958 Wellington were runner up to Auckland with their match tied at 6-6 (Auckland winning on games 15-13). Wellington were again runner ups in 1959 losing to Auckland 0-12. In 1961 Wellington ( Murray Dunn (Captain, Geoff Jennings, Gary Roselli, John Crossley, Mike Beder) won the Kean Shield ( NZ A Grade Men’s Team) winning all 5 matches including beating Auckland 9-3 in the final.
Gary was in a Wellington Team that won the Croudis Shield against Hutt Valley (1958 17-11 1959 16-10 1960 score not in annual report 1961 19-9). The Claphaw Trophy against Canterbury was won in 1958 22-6 and 1961 15-13. The Gordon Cup against Auckland was won in 1961 at Taumarunui 18-10 which was the last time the Cup was completed for. He was in the Wellington team that beat Wairarapa 1958 12-0 and 1961 32-16. In 1958 he was in the Wellington Men’s Team that beat NZ University 11-1.
Gary later played for the Empire Club and was mainly a reserve for the top team in A Grade interclub (1965-76). He played 4 matches (won 10 lost 2) for the 1972 Empire A Grade No 1 Team (with Hone Ridley, Warren Evans and Keith Pointon) which won the Hutt Valley A Grade. He was in the 1973 A Grade Team (with Hone Ridley and Pat Low) that won the Hutt Valley A Grade where he won 23 out of 36 matches. 1981 was his last year of interclub for Empire for the A Reserve No 1 Team (with Tony Rutledge, Keith Pointon and Merv Allardyce) which finished 3rd.
In Tennis Gary was a Life Member of the Avalon Tennis Club. He won 5 NZ Veterans Men’s Doubles and 4 NZ Veterans Mixed Doubles Titles. They were:
1985 NZ Over 50 Men’s Doubles with Ivan Easton 1986 NZ Over 50 men’s Doubles with Geoff Lankow 1993 NZ Over 55 Men’s Doublies with Viv Hargreaves 2000 NZ Over 65 Men’s Doubles with Tom Wotherspoon 2001 NZ Over 65 Men’s Doubles with Tom Wotherspoon 1993 NZ Over 55 Mixed Doubles with Mary Ryan 1995 NZ Over 60 Mixed Doubles with Ann Stephens 1997 NZ Over 60 Mixed Doubles with Mary Ryan 2000 NZ Over 65 Mixed Doubles with Jean Stevens In 1990 Gary with Geoff Lankow were runner up in Australian Over 55 Men’s Doubles Gary represented NZ in the following Veterans teams tournaments overseas 1994 Men’s Over 60 – Von Cramm Cup, Florida USA with Larry O’Neill & Russell Blewden 1995 Men’s Over 60 – Von Cramm Cup, Portschach Austria with Don Tayor & Larry O’Neill 1998 Men’s Over 60 – Von Cramm Cup , Fort Lauderdale, USA with Larry O’Neill, Don Taylor & John Hempsted 1999 Men’s Over 65 – Britannia Cup, Costa Brava Spain with Larry O’Neill & Don Taylor
Information for this article came from Peter Roselli (details on Gary before his move to Wellington) , National Library site, Wellington Table Tennis Annual Reports, Onslow Table Tennis Club records, Table Tennis NZ Website, Table Tennis Review (July & Aug 1959), Avalon Tennis Annual Report. NZ Tennis Seniors website and Tennis Seniors Australia website.
Betty Irene Thompson (nee Powell) died 5/03/2019 in Wellington, aged 97. Much loved mother of Trevor, Jennifer, Lester and Louise and special grandmother of Michael and Laura. (Dominion Post, 7 March 2019)
Betty first played table tennis in 1939 at work in Wellington during the lunch hour and after work. She played interclub for Railways and Technical (1948) and was ranked in the Wellington Women rankings 1946 (5), 1947 (4), 1948 (6). She was a Wellington Women’s Representative to the 1947 NZ Championships that won the Women’s A Grade Teams and became the first team to win the Herbert G Teagle Memorial Shield. Betty was an allround attacking player on both wings.
In 1946 Betty won the North Island Women Doubles with May Wareham (Wgtn) and the Mixed Doubles with Eric Boniface (Wgtn). Also the Hutt Valley Open Mixed Doubles with Eric Boniface.
In 1947 Betty won the NZ Mixed Doubles with Eric Boniface. The South Island Women Doubles with Audrey Hunt (HV) and Mixed Doubles with W J (Bill) Fogarty (Otg). Also the Wellington Open Women Doubles with A P (Agnes) Knight (Wgtn) and Hutt Valley Open Women Doubles with A Hunt. In 1948 Betty retained the Hutt Valley Open Women Doubles with A Hunt.
Betty moved to Manawatu in 1949. She won the Taranaki Open Women Singles and Doubles,with M Fahey, and gained a NZ Women ranking of 10th.
Betty then moved to Timaru and won the South Canterbury Women Singles (1951 & 1953) and Women Doubles with E A Collins (1952 & 1953). She won the 1952 South Island Women’s Singles and Doubles with E A Collins. She was on the NZ Ranking list 1951 (9), 1952 (4) and 1953 (7). Betty was the only player to defeat Margaret Hoar in the 1953 NZ Women’s A Grade Teams.
In 1954 Betty moved to Otaki in the Manawatu. She won the Manawatu Closed Women Singles (1954 & 1955), Women Doubles with Merle Rolston (1955) and Mixed Doubles with H Jones (1955).
Also 8 more Provincial Open Doubles and 3 Mixed Doubles Titles. They were: 1954 Wairarapa Open Women’s Doubles with N Andrews (Wairarapa) 1956 Wanganui Open Women’s Doubles with Val Rolston (Manawatu) 1957 Bush Open Wpmen’s Doubles with Val Rolston 1957 Hutt Valley Open Women’s Doubles with Val Rolston 1957 Hutt Valley Mixed Doubles with Hugh Lauder (Wgtn) 1957 Manawatu Open Women’s Doubles with Val Rolston 1958 Wellington Open Women’s Doubles with Val Rolston 1958 Wellington Mixed Doubles with Hugh Lauder 1958 Manawatu Open Women’s Doubles with Val Rolston 1958 Bush Open Women’s Doubles with Val Rolston 1958 Bush Open Mixed Doubles with Hugh Lauder
In Veterans events Betty (Rotorua) won the 1978 NZ Over 45 Women Singles and Doubles with D Ord (Manawatu). In 2006 representing Manawau She won the North Island Over 65 Doubles with Merle Sneddon (MN) and Over 70 Mixed Doubles with Bill Otene (WT). In 2009 Betty won the NZ Masters Games Over 70 Women Doubles with Betty Meads.
Thanks to the Dominion Post, TTNZ Annual Reports, Table Tennis Wellington Annual Reports, Table Tennis Wanganui website and the TTNZ photo archives for information that is in this article.
Val Muirhead died at Waikanae at the age of 84. She was a former Epuni Club/Empire Club member and Hutt Valley Table Tennis Representative. Val was a Empire Club/Hutt Valley Association Committee Member and a Hutt Valley Life Member.
Val had a open attacking style. She joined the Empire Club in 1955 from the Epuni Club. Val was in the following Empire winning interclub teams. 1955 B Grade Team (with Ron Menchi, Murray Sherlock, R Inglis) and the 1960 A Reserve Team (with Merv Burns, Ron Menchi, John Ogilvie). She played Hutt Valley A Grade for the Empire Number 2 Team (1959-72) with her best result 50% in 1965 (18/36) and 1967 (12/24). At the Empire Club Val won the Best Sportsperson Award jointly with Eddie Harris (1958) and the Most Outstanding Performance (1959). At the Empire Club Championships Val won six Women Singles (1963, 1964, 1966, 1968-1970), nine Women Doubles (1958-62, 1967-68 with Joan Brown, 1963 & 1970 with Merle Harding) and four Mixed Doubles (1959, 1963-64 with Keith Pointon and 1970 with Hone Ridley).
As a junior Val won the 1950 Wellington Open Under 18 Girls Doubles with N A King (W). She was a Hutt Valley Women Team Representative (1956-71) to the NZ Championships. In most of these teams was Joan Brown (1953-62, 1964-65, 1967-72). Val won the 1958 Bush Open Women Singles and the 1963 Hutt Valley Closed Women Singles. In Women’s Doubles she won: six Hutt Valley Closed tournaments (1962,1964-65,1967, 1969 with Joan Brown, 1963 with R Bush); five Hutt Valley Opens with Joan Brown (1961,1965,1969), with Gwen Schneider (1963), with Jeanette Wilson (1967); four Wellington Opens with Joan Brown (1965, 1967-69); the 1971 Kapiti Open with Gillian Kemp; the 1967 Manawatu Open with Joan Brown; the 1959 Wairarapa Open with Mary Anderson; the 1964 Wanganui Open with Joan Brown. In Mixed Doubles Val won the Hutt Valley Closed twice (1963 with Peter McLauchlan and 1964 with Albert Roberts); the 1963 Bush Open and the Wairarapa Open with Geoff Jennings; the 1966 Hutt Valley Open with Denis Thorner. In 1963 Val played in the Australian Open.
1959 was Val’s best year. She was ranked Number 8 on the New Zealand Women’s Ranking List. She represented the North Island (with Barbara Packwood (Captain), Joan Brown, Neti Davis) against the South Island ( Pat Purdon (Captain),June Shadbolt, Thelma May, Pam Crowe ). Won 7-5 by the North Island. In the NZ Championships Val and Joan Brown were runner up in the Women Doubles to Mary Anderson (HV)/Val White 21-12 15-21 21-8 17-21 21-19. In the North Island Championships Women Singles Val beat the seeded Pat Purdon (3rd round) and Mary Broadbent (Semi Finals) and was runner up to Joan Brown 21-14 21-14 10-21 21-11. Val and Joan Brown were runner up in the Women Doubles to Pat Purdon (C)/Pam Deans 11-21 21-16 22-20 21-19. In the Hawera Teams Tournament Empire Club (Joan Brown, Val Muirhead, Betty Gardner, Bev Christensen) beat Wanganui (Gwen Schneider, Cynthia Gifford-Moore, P Haywood, Joyce Williams) in the Women’s Final 6-4.
Val was on the Empire Club Management Committee (1957-72) and was one of the fifteen signatures when the Club applied to be an Incorporated Society in 1961. The Certificate of Incorporation was registered on December 19, 1961. She was also on the Hutt Valley Table Tennis Association Executive Committee. The Empire Golden Jubilee Book said she served for 20 years on the Hutt Valley Committee. In 1965 history was made when the Hutt Valley Association appointed her as its sole selector. The first time a woman has held that position. Hutt Valley beat Wellington 21-7 to win the Jack Croudis Memorial Shield and Canterbury to win the Brightwell Trophy to win both matches for the first time in the same year. She was elected a Hutt Valley Association Life Member and became a Table Tennis Wellington Life Member when the Wellington Association and the Hutt Valley Association merged in 2002. She was also on the NZ Executive Committee (1971-72). Val also served on the 1980 NZ Championship Committee.
Information for the article was provide from the Alexander Turnbull Library, Val Darroch, Empire Table Tennis Club Annual Reports, Empire Club Golden Jubilee Book (1934-1984), Empire Club website, Table Tennis NZ website and Wellington Table Tennis Association Annual Reports. Unfortunately I have been unable to locate Hutt Valley Table Tennis Association Reports for this period. Also some Empire Club Annual Reports were missing (1934-36, 1939-45, 1954,1955,1970). No information was founded from her time at the Epuni Club.
Tony was born in Blenheim (1946). He was the youngest of 6 Children (2 boys and 4 girls). He started played rugby (1955) and tennis (1956) while at primary school. Tony was a second five eight in rugby and was selected for Marlborough Intermediate School Boys Rugby Team (1958) against Nelson.
His father, Jack, was a champion rower. He was in the Wairau (Marlborough) Cox Four (Wally Gibbons (stroke), Harry Rutledge, Jack MacDonald, Jack Rutledge, G Elsmore (cox)), at the 1934 NZ Championship held in Picton, which won the New Zealand Title. Also in the crew was his uncle Harry. Jack also raced motor cycles and later speedboat racing, where he has won the Pelorus Jack Cup (1964) and South Island unlimited championships on “Excuse Me Too”. Tony also raced on this boat. His uncle, Harry, was also a competitor in speedboat racing and won NZ’s Premier Speed Boat event, the Masport Cup twice (1968 & 1969) on “Tru-Jen”.
Tony started playing table tennis interclub in Marlborough (1962) at age 16. He played 2 years in B Grade and then A Grade (1964). His brother, David, also played A Grade. Tony was coached by Nigel Perry, a great stalwart of Marlborough tennis and table tennis. Tony has always played with a hard bat, with short pimple rubber on both sides. He had a all round style. Tony was Co Dux at Marlborough Boy’s College (1964) and won the Marlborough Open under 18 Boys Singles and Doubles (with Bill Cockram) that year.
In 1965 Tony moved to Christchurch to study engineering at Canterbury University (1965-69) where he completed a BE and ME degree. He played Canterbury A Reserve Grade Table Tennis (1965-66) and then A Grade (1967-69).
Tony worked for NZ Electricity at Marsden (1970) near Whangarei and played A Grade Table Tennis for the Kamo Club. He then moved to the Wairakei geothermal power station (1971-72) and played Taupo A Grade. In 1973 Tony moved to NZ Electricity Head Office in Wellington and played for the Hospital Club (1973) and Te Rama Club (1974-80). Tony was in the winning 1975 Te Rama Team (with Alan Eng, Dick Coker) in the Summer (After Christmas) 1st Division B. Tony ( with Graeme Jourdain and Murray Talbot ) was in the 1977 Te Rama A Reserve Grade winning team and won the A Reserve Grade Doubles with Murray Talbot. In his Te Rama B Team in A Grade (1978-80) were Ann Gyongyos, and Kay Kelly. List of players in teams did not exist in the Wellington Table Tennis Association Annual Report, except for winning teams, prior to 1978. He also played in Kapiti A Grade interclub (1976-80). He won the 1976 Porirua Table Tennis Club Singles and was in the Porirua Red Team (with Murray and Chris Talbot) that won the 1980 Kapiti Division 1 Competition ( P Ngan Cup). Tony was selected in the Kapiti Men’s Team for the 1977 NZ Championships.
Tony moved to the Hutt Valley (1981) and has played for the Empire Club since then.
He played Premier 1, Premier 2, A Grade, A Reserve Grade and Division 1, for Empire. He was in the Empire winning Premier 2 Team on 7 occasions, and in 2 Empire Teams that has won Division 1. In winning 2015 Division 1 (Series 1) his Empire Team became the first winners of the Chris Williams Cup. Tony also won the Division 1 Grade Singles (2015 & 2016). His best season was in 2008 where he was headed the interclub averages in Premier 2 with 100%, winning all his 36 singles.
Winning Empire Interclub Teams
John Lelliott, Chris Clegg, Tony Rutledge, Paul Ridley
John Lelliott, Chris Clegg, Tony Rutledge, Paul Ridley, Albie Roberts
Michael McCleary, Brendon Pearson, Kristen Phillips, Tony Rutledge
John Lelliott, Heath Murdoch, Tony Rutledge
John Lelliott, Heath Murdoch, Tony Rutledge
Stephan Gershewski, Thom Nguyen, Tony Rutledge, Dzeung Nguyen
Chris Williams, Bruce Connolly, Uy Tang, Tony Rutledge
Division 1 (Series 1)
Tony Rutledge, Bob Leeming, Bruce Connolly, Russell Buchanan
Division 1 (Series 2)
Tony Rutledge, Andrew Maguire, Brendyn Shaw
Up to the end of 2015 Tony has played the most times for Empire at winter interclub (413). At the Empire Club Championships Tony has won the Men’s Singles twice (1993 & 1996), Men’s Doubles 7 times (1985, 1986, 1991, 1993, 1994, 1995, 2007) and Mixed Doubles twice (1994 & 1995). Tony had the best interclub record at the Empire Club (2008, 2012, 2013, 2015) and won the Best Sportperson Trophy twice (1985, 2003).
Tony was a Hutt Valley and Wellington Veterans Representative at the NZ Championships and NZ Veterans Championships. He was in the Wellington Team (with Warren Evans and Bryan McConnochie) that won the NZ Men’s Over 55 Teams (2003).
At the NZ Masters Games (Wanganui). Tony has won 7 Golds in table tennis, which were for the Over 35 Teams (2007), Over 45 Teams (2003), Over 35 Men’s Doubles 1999), Over 35 Mixed Doubles (1999) and 3 Over 55 Men’s Doubles (2005, 2009, 2015).
Tony has won the Kapiti Over 35 Men’s Singles (1988), Wellington Open Over 50 Singles (1997) and Wairarapa Over 40 Men’s Singles (2002).
In Tennis Tony has been runner up in the club singles at the Kilbirnie Tennis Club (1981) and Avalon Tennis Club (1982). He was in the Avalon Men’s Team that the Hutt Valley Men’s Division 1 (2009-2010). At the NZ Masters Games (Wanganui) Tony won the Gold Medal in the Over 60 Men’s Tennis Singles (2007 & 2011).
Tony ran for Aurora Harriers in Petone (1984-89). In 1986 he ran the Rotorua and Masterton Marathons. His best time was 3 hours 25 minutes and 25 seconds at Masterton.
Tony has a keen interest in model power boat racing. He was the secretary of the NZ Model Power Boat Association (1979-87, 1990-91) and was made a Life Member in 2002. He has won the Presidents Cup 12 times for being best overall results at the NZ Model Power Boat Championships (1979, 1987-1991, 1997, 1999, 2001-2004). Tony holds a number of speed and matrix records for model power boat racing. He has represented New Zealand at the 1979 NAMBA Nationals held at Monterey, California (USA) where he was placed 1st (1 hour endurance and ½ hour endurance overall) and 2nd (1/2 hour race). Tony set 2 endurance records at the NAMBA Nationals for 1 hour and ½ hour. Tony went to the Indy Down Under near Sydney in 1991 where he placed 3rd (6 lap race).
Today Tony continues to play tennis, table tennis, build and race model speed boats. At the 2016 Antique and Classic Boat Show held at Lake Rotoiti (Nelson Lake District Park) he won the Eventiac best theme display, a model boat display. Tony played for Wellington at the 2016 NZ Table Tennis Veteran Championships where he won silver in the Over 65 teams with Bryan McConnochie and was unbeaten in the over 70 teams event. In 2016 Tony has won the Wellington Autumn Open Over 65 Singles, Wellington Veterans Over 70 Singles and the Marlborough Open Over 60 Singles and Doubles.
Information for this article came from the following. Table Tennis Wellington Annual Reports and TTW website, 1980 Kapiti Table Tennis Association Annual Report, Empire Table Tennis Club 75th anniversary book and website, The NZ Model Power Boat Association website, The Marlborough Pictorial (Feb 1971), The NZ Power Boat Association website and The Manukau Power Boat Club website.
We had a special guest at the Newtown Table Tennis Stadium – you may have seen him on the news! Sir Peter Snell and his wife Miki were in Wellington for his memorabilia presentations to Te Papa and popped in for some hits to keep their eye in for the upcoming Masters Games where they will be competing in table tennis. A number of us there took some photos and below is a selection (thanks to those who sent in some pictures already including Phillip, David M, Yang, Malcolm, & Rob).
Sir Peter’s messages on TVNZ are a powerful endorsement of the ability of table tennis to engage us at all ages. Age is no barrier! Here are two links to news items – spot a few background guest appearances!
Joy Shirley (nee Warwick) died 19 October, 2016, in Nelson.
Joy was a former Wellington Women’s Representative (1956-59, 1961-65, 1967, 1969). She played interclub for All Saints (1955), Technical (1956-65), Northland (1967) and Kilbirnie (1969). Joy was selected for Wellington Under 18 Girls against Hutt Valley in 1955 (won 12-0) and 1956 (won 11-1). She won the 1956 Wellington Open Under 18 Girls Singles and was selected in the same year for Wellington Women’s Team against South Taranaki (won 10-2).
Joy was first ranked on the Wellington Women’s List in 1956 (6th). She was ranked in all the following years she played (1956-65, 1967 and 1969). The highlight was being ranked number 1 in 1964. Joy was in the Wellington Team that won the Clapshaw Trophy against Canterbury (1963, 1969) and the Croudis Shield against Hutt Valley (1962-64)
Joy was in the Wellington Women B Team (1958) and the Wellington Women’s Team (1962-65, 1969) at the NZ Teams Championships. They reached the semi finals in 1963 against Auckland (lost 3-7).
Joy’s two younger sisters, Rae and Susan were also Wellington Juniors Girls and Women Representatives. They were also on the Wellington Women Ranking List. Susan was in the Wellington Junior Team that won the 1962 Calder Cup against Waitako 8-4. In 1962 all 3 sisters were in the Wellington Women’s Team against Kapiti (won 11-1).
Murray Dunn was born in 1935 and died on 19 July 2015 in Auckland, aged 79. His obituary was in the New Zealand Herald.
He was a former Wellington and New Zealand Table Tennis player. Murray was NZ Table Tennis Singles Champion (1960-63), ranked Number 1 on the NZ Men’s List (1960-63 and 1965), NZ Player of the Year (1961, 1962 and 1965) and went to 3 World Table Tennis Championships (1954, 1961 and 1967). He is in the Table Tennis Hall of Fame (1999).
His Hall of Fame article said that ‘Murray was the possessor of a wonderful match temperament coupled with quick reflexes and nimble footwork. His backhand kill was a consistent and accurate winner. He was able to rally for long periods, hitting the same shot from either side of the table until the point was won’. Continue reading “Murray Dunn – New Zealand Champion”→
Tony was born in Wellington (1934). His father Robert was a Wellington Table Tennis Association Vice President. Tony first played in table tennis at age 10. Bill Scott, in the top floor of the building Tony lived in, had a table tennis table. Tony was taking tennis lessons from Tommy Williams who suggest that he play table tennis. So at age 11 he went to a table tennis club at the Newtown Primary School in Russell Terrace.
Tony went to Wellington College (1947-51) and boarded there from the Fifth Form (1949). There was a table at Firth House to practice on. Tony (15) played fellow Wellington College student and future NZ Men’s Singles Champion Murray Dunn (13) in a curtain raiser to the New Zealand v England Men’s Test (1949). Tony won the single game 33-31. Tony was selected in the 1949 Wellington Under 16 Boys Team in the annual match against Hutt Valley (won 10-2). In 1951 Tony won the Wellington Secondary Schools Senior Boys Singles, The Wellington Open Second Grade Singles and Doubles (with Roy Lea) and the Manawatu Boy’s Singles. He and Murray Dunn won the Wellington and Hutt Valley Open under 18 Boys Doubles. Also the Wellington Under 18 Mixed Doubles with Helen Dykes.
Tony was also a good tennis player, representing Wellington as a junior in the Slazenger Shield (1951-53). He and Murray Dunn won the 1949,1950 and 1953 Wellington Junior Boy’s Doubles. Tony reached the Quarter finals of the 1952 NZ Junior Boy’s Singles and was runner up in the 1952 and 1953 NZ Junior Boy’s Doubles with Murray Dunn. He played at the Island Bay Tennis Club and was the Island Bay Club Men’s Singles Champion in 1955-56 and 1956-57.
In 1951, Tony first played interclub for the Te Tapu Ranga Club. The one club team meet at Bill Wah’s garage in Adelaide Road, Newtown, Wellington. His team was Dennis Catley, Dave Marple and Alan Robinson. In 1952 Tony played in A Grade with Dave, Alan and Ron Sandilands. Ron had won the 1951 Under 18 NZ Boys Singles and Doubles with Murray Dunn. Dave and Alan were to win the 1952 NZ Under 18 Boy’s Doubles, and Dave also won the 1952 NZ Under 18 Mixed Doubles with M Emery. Tony was selected for the Wellington Men’s Team for the NZ Championships.
In 1953 Tony, Dave and Alan joined the University Club and played in The University Team in A Grade with O G Collins. Tony represented Victoria University at the NZ University Tournament in 1954 where Victoria won the teams and he won the Men’s Doubles with Alan Robinson and Mixed Doubles with Elizabeth Lesser. Tony was selected for the NZ University Men’s Team which played Wellington (Lost 0-12).
Tony represented Wellington Men’s Team at the NZ Championships (1952-54 and 1956). The highlight was in 1954 where he was the Player/Manager of the Men’s Team and Manager of the Women’s Team. Both teams won their Teams Competition. Tony was on the Wellington Association Committee (1954-56 and 1961-62).
Tony won the 1956 Nelson Open Men’s Singles. Also the following Men’s Doubles Titles.He won the 1952 Bush Open with Dave Marple and the 1954 Wanganui Open with Hugh Lauder. Also the 1955 Bush Open, 1955 and 1956 Wairarapa Open with John Crossley. In the Mixed Doubles he won the1952 Wairarapa Open, 1953 Bush Open, 1954 Hutt Valley and Manawatu Open all with Thyra McGregor, Also the 1956 Marlborough and Nelson Open Mixed Doubles with Val Cousins. In 1957 Tony married Val Cousins and they won the 1958 Wairarapa Open Mixed Doubles.
Val had been in the Wellington Women’s Team (1953-56, 1958) and was the top ranked Wellington Woman in 1954 and 1958. Val won the 1955 Hutt Valley Open Women Doubles (With Ann Wah), 1956 Nelson Open Women Singles and the 1956 Wellington Open Women Doubles (with Thyra McGregor). Later she took up running and was the first winner of the Women’s section of the Rotorua Marathon (1974).
Tony and Val moved to Palmerston North in 1963. Their four children all played table tennis but only son Malcolm continued on with the sport. Malcolm was NZ Under 18 Boys Singles Champion (1975) and represented NZ in the Junior Boys, Men’s and Veteran Men’s.
In 1965 Tony passed the provincial umpires exam. He stopped playing table tennis in 1980 to concentrate on umpiring. In 1983 Tony and Gary Farquhar attended a umpiring course in Hong Kong. In 1984 they both passed the International Umpires Exam. Tony umpired in the 1985 Commonwealth Championships (Isle of Man) and 1985 World Championships (Gotenborg, Sweden). Tony and Val lived in London (1985-96). He umpired at many English weekend tournaments, often travelling with Surrey umpires Terry Carpenter and Terry Vance. In 1988 Tony was selected to umpire at the Olympics (Seoul, South Korea). In 1996 Tony and Val left London and returned to New Zealand to live in Wellington.
Tony returned to playing table tennis in 2014 as he had entered the World Veterans Championships in Henderson, Auckland. He plays table tennis at the mid week club at Newtown Stadium, Wellington on Monday morning and Wednesday afternoon and at the Empire Club (Petone) on Tuesday and Thursday morning.
Information for this article was provided by Tony Darroch, Wellington Table Tennis Annual Reports, New Zealand Table Tennis Annual Reports, TTNZ Chronicles, The Salient (Victoria University of Wellington Student Newspaper), The Dominion Newspaper, Wellington Tennis Annual Reports and the Island Bay Tennis Club.
The following photos are from the TTNZ Photo Archives.
Ivan Moffat was born in 1917 in Wellington. He was 97 in August last year and is Table Tennis Wellington’s oldest Vice President. He started playing at age 12 at the Boys Institute in Tasman Street, Wellington. This began a lifetime involvement with table tennis.
During World War 2 Ivan was a private and sapper with the 36th NZ Army Battalion (1941-45) in the Pacific. He borrowed a bat from the Salvation Army and played with his fellow soldiers when there was time.
Ivan played interclub for the St Josephs Club in Mount Victoria. He was in their 1954 winning E Grade Team. In the final St Josephs beat Kilbirnie RSA 12-8. There were 61 teams in E Grade that year, in 8 sections. The next year Ivan was playing C Grade. His team won Section 3 and finished 3rd of 4 teams in post section play. Brian Hearfield (TTW Life Member) recalls that he played against Ivan in B Grade. The St Josephs team also included Jack Dobbs and Bob Gallagher. Bob who played for St Josephs (1957-62) said that Ivan was an attacking player who used the same side of the bat for both forehand and backhand. Bob also said that Ivan was the most awkward player he has played against. Ivan also played in the A Reserve Grade. He later played for St Pats in Kilbirnie. His wife Florence (better known as Florrie or Flossie) was ever present with him on club night and at his interclub matches.
Ivan was on the Wellington Table Tennis Association Executive Committee (1962-73). He was on the Emergency, Tournament and Hall, and Equipment Sub Committees. Ivan was also the Recording Secretary for A-B Grades (1963-73). He was a Junior Selector (1962) and Senior Selector (1963-70). He was the Manager for Wellington Teams in matches against Wairarapa, Canterbury (Clapshaw Trophy) and the Grades Match against Hutt Valley. He was the Manager of the Wellington Teams at the NZ Championships (1963) and Women’s Team (1964-67, 1969-70). Ivan was on the New Zealand Table Tennis Committee (1974).
In the then annual match against Hutt Valley, Ivan was in the Wellington Executive Team (1962,1963,1965,1967,1969 & 1972), C Grade Team (1955) and A Reserve Team (1971 & 1973). The Executive Team won 10-2 (1963) 12-0 (1967) 7-5 (1969) 11-1 (1972) and the A Reserve Team won 8-4 (1971) and 7-5 (1973). Ivan won the Wellington Open Veteran Men’s Singles (Over 45) on 4 occasions (1963,1965, 1966 and 1968). Ivan is a qualified National Umpire. At the New Zealand Championships, Ivan was Deputy Referee (1965), Assistant Referee (1979) and Referee in 1986,1988, 1991, 1996 and 1998. Former Wellington coach Paul Escott said that at the New Zealand Championships, Ivan (Tournament Referee) proudly worn his Wellington blazer. His wife Florence was there at the tournaments with him until she passed away in December 2004.
Ivan left Wellington to move to Papakura, Auckland in July, 1978. He joined the Papakura Club and continued playing and being an official. He was rewarded for his services by being made a Life Member of the Auckland Association (1994), Papakura Club (2005) and Counties Association (2013). Ivan is the Patron of the Papakura Table Tennis Club since 2008 and the joint Patron of the Counties Association. There was a story in the Papakura Courier in 2007 when Ivan won the Papakura Club Doubles at the age of 90. A fellow Auckland Committee member referred to him as always strict but fair. He had an engaging personality and was always able to communicate with all ages and all types. As Referee he would ensure that the playing conditions were right. He would check that the barriers were in their right place, and that the net heights were correct at the start of each session. Ivan had a true love for the game.
Ivan played table tennis until he was 94. He said that table tennis had helped him maintain his coordination and fitness in his life. He was a visitor at the 2014 World Veteran Table Tennis Championships in Henderson, Auckland. Ivan enjoys seeing his family: his son Keith and wife Eunice, 4 grandchildren and 6 great grandchildren. Ivan has moved into a rest home in Papakura in 2014.
There were 8 teams in the grade and 2 rounds were played. Te Rama (Malcolm Wong, Martin Young and David Robinson) convincingly won the Grade (13 wins 1 loss) with 39 points, 10 clear of runner up Onslow (Adrian Sutton, Les Foy, Tony Tziakis).
Malcolm Wong first played for Te Rama in C Grade (1982) with his brother Peter and Mike Burke. In his first match Te Rama beat Johnsonville 12-0. He played interclub for Te Rama (1982-98) and was in Premier 2 (1994-98). He has won 10 Te Rama Club Singles and the Titan Club Singles (1995). He was in the Te Rama team that won C Grade (1986) B Grade (1989) and A Reserve Grade (1991 & 1993). Also the Pre Christmas Division 2 A (1986) and the Autumn A Grade (1997) where in the final against Onslow, Malcolm won all his 3 singles which included defeating 2 current NZ Junior Boys Representatives. He won the 1982 Regional C Grade Doubles (with Brian Roberts), 1989 B Grade doubles (with Henry Anastasi), A Reserve Singles (1990 & 1991) and Doubles (1989 with Henry Anastasi & 1991-93 with Martin Young), and 1995 & 1996 Open Grade Doubles (with Matthew Hobbs).
Malcolm later played interclub for Titan, Onslow and Empire, including Premier 1 for Titan and Empire. He was a National Councillor (1987) and the Wellington Table Tennis Association President and Chairman (1990-91). He was to be Wellington Treasurer (1993 and 1996-98) and Secretary (1998). Malcolm was elected as a Wellington Vice President (1999). He is a qualified coach, with Table Tennis New Zealand Level One and Coaching New Zealand Level One Certificates (2001). He qualified as a National Referee (2007) and International Umpire (2008). Malcolm has been on the TTNZ Umpires and Referees Committee since 2012 and was this year on the Oceania Table Tennis Federation URC. He was the TTNZ National Official of the Year (2013). To date he has won 85 Tournament Titles. His first title was winning the 1995 Wellington Regional Over 40 Doubles with John Lelliott, against Adrian Lust and Nha Nguyen. At this years NZ Chinese Sports Tournament Malcolm with Martin Young were runner up in the Men’s Doubles and were in the winning Wellington Men’s Team.
Martin Young had originally played for Ling Tse and was in their team that won the C2 Grade (1987) and C Grade (1988). He headed the C Grade singles averages in 1988 with 34/36 (94%). He and Martin Gee won the C Grade Doubles that year. He joined Te Rama in 1989. Martin was in the Te Rama Team that won the A Reserve Grade (1991 & 1993) and he won the A Reserve Singles (1993) and A Reserve Doubles (1991-93). He was to have the top singles average in Premier 2 in 2003 with 24/27 (89%) when playing for Johnsonville. He has won 16 Te Rama Club Singles and the Johnsonville Men’s Club Singles twice. Martin was in the GP Print Dragon Boat Team the won the Wellington Corporate Section (1993). He currently plays for Empire in Premier 1 and has been on the Empire Club Board since 2011.
David Robinson was a NZ University Representative (1964) and has a doctorate in Physics from Auckland University (1964). He played for Takapuna in the North Shore competition and for Auckland University in the Auckland competition. In the North Shore Grade Championships, he won the C Grade Doubles (1957), B Grade Singles (1958) and A Grade Men’s Doubles (1961) with his older brother Max. David was in the Auckland University Team that won the table tennis at the NZ University Tournament (1964). He also won the Mixed Doubles with Ann Mutch. David played in England (1966-69) at Harwell, Oxfordshire, for his work team, Atomic Energy Research Establishment, in the local league. He moved to Wellington (1969) but did not play again until 1988 for Ling Tse in the Pre Christmas Summer Interclub (Division 2) prior to joining Te Rama in 1989. He also has an interest in music and has played the bassoon in various orchestras.
Runner up Onslow had Adrian Sutton, Wellington Association Secretary (1990) who was in the winning A Reserve team with Newlands (1989) with his wife Pam, Bob Bell and Brian Neale. He won the 1990 A Reserve Grade Doubles with Jason Granville. Also in the team was Les Foy and Tony Tziakis. Tony was in the same 1977 Wellington College Team as current Wellington Junior Coach Paul Solt. He is now playing again at the Titan Club.
Third placed Titan A had Virgil Kan, now The Club Captain at Onslow. Geoff Fletcher, who had originally played for PSA, and was to win the Titan Over 40 Singles (2000). Bruce Stewart had set up the first work trust and was the founder of the Tapu Te Ranga Marae in Island Bay. The Marae entered teams in Wellington interclub in 1983 (C and D Grade) and 1984 where the C Grade team (Bruce Stewart, Maru Corbett, Dean Stewart) finished second in the grade. Dean is Bruce’s son and another son James played table tennis at the Titan, Empire and Belmont Clubs. Another son, Sam played rugby league for New Zealand. Bruce Stewart was to win the A Reserve Singles (1994).
Newlands had Bob Bell, Kerry Duggan, and the father and son pair of Tony Fisher and Ross Fisher. Ross Fisher was in the Wellington Boy’s under 15 Team (1990) and Under 19 Teams (1991-92) and was to win the Wellington Secondary Schools Boys Singles (1992). Bob Bell, Kerry Duggan and Ross Fisher would be in the Newlands A Team (with Ray Hardy and Brian Neale) that would win the A Reserve Grade in 1992.
Titan B had Allan Rassmussen, who had won C Grade with Spartan (1981) and PSA A (1984) and D Grade with NAC A (1969). He won the C Grade Singles (1981 & 1989) and C Grade Doubles (1982 with Dave Pyle). He won all his 39 matches in 1981. Colin Hicks was in the PSA A Team that won C Grade (1984) and he and J Milne won the 1981 C Grade Doubles. He was President of the Public Service Association (PSA) from 1983 to 1988. Colin died in 2010. Dave Pyle had been in the University team that won D Grade (1979) and the PSA team that won D Grade (1981) and C Grade (1984). He won the 1964 2nd Grade Singles and Doubles (with T Ng), C Grade Singles (1983) and Doubles (1982) and D Grade Singles (1978-1980) and Doubles (1978-79 with H Yee and 1980-81 with Jim Delahunty). Dave was on the Wellington Association Committee (1980-85) and would be in the Apollon team that would win the A Reserve Grade (2006). Elizabeth Groblinger was number 5 in the Wellington Women rankings that year.
Apollon had Chris Papanicolaou Alan Bond, Stuart Prince and Peter Varuhas. Chris Papanicolaou had been the Apollon B Grade winning team (1979). Alan Bond had been in the winning C Grade Team with Sony (1978) and Royals (1989). He won all his 27 matches in 1989. He won the C Grade Singles (1972 & 1989) and 1989 Doubles (with Ron Haward) and 1972 D Grade Singles and Doubles (with Brian Biberstein). Peter Varuhas is a Romanian Greek who arrived in New Zealand in 1951 and first played for the Apollon Club in 1952. Already playing for the club were Nick Gousgounis and Chris Papanicolao. Peter (1975-79), Nick (1980) and Chris (1980-85) were on the Wellington Association Committee. Nick and Chris have since died. Peter Varuhas would play for the Apollon Club until 2006 when he was 78. Peter was in the Apollon team that won D Grade (1975), C Grade (1976), B Grade jointly with University A (1979) and A Reserve (2006). In those winning teams was his younger brother Nicholas (1975 & 1976), who has since died, and his son Costa (1979). After 2006 there were insufficient teams to have a A Reserve Grade competition at the Newtown Stadium, Wellington. The players in his Apollon team did not want to play in the B Grade competition at the Empire Club (Petone) so the team stopped playing interclub.
Karori had juniors Simon Reed, Grant Hardy and Mark Jurgeleit. Simon would be in the Wellington Boy’s under 19 Boy’s Team (1992-94) and be the top ranked Wellington Under 19 Boy (1994). He was in the Wellington College team that won the Wellington Secondary Schools Boys Teams (1991). Simon would serve on the Wellington Association Committee (1993-2002). He was also coach of the Wellington Under 19 Boys Team (1998-2001). The 2000 Team (John Cordue, Evan Kramer, Cameron Gordon, Quentin Rew) won the NZ Boys Under 19 Teams Title. (John Cordue would be number 1 on the NZ Men’s Ranking list (2009) and has represented NZ at the World Championships and this years Commonwealth Games. Quentin Rew would represent NZ at the 2012 Olympics in the 50 km Race Walk.) Mark Jurgeliet was in the Wellington Under 15 Boy’s Team (1990) and won the C Grade Singles that year. He was in the Wellington College Team (1991) and Onslow College Team (1992) that won the Wellington Secondary Schools Boys Teams. Grant Hardy was in the Wellington Under 15 Boy’s Team (1986-87) and he won the 1987 Wairarapa Open under 15 Boys Singles and Doubles.
Hardshots had Brian Neale who had played A Grade for Victoria University and Newlands. Brian was in the Victoria University Team that had won the table tennis at the NZ University Tournament (1963) and he was runner up in the Men’s Singles. He was then selected in the New Zealand University Men’s Team that toured the South Island. Brian was in the Newlands team that won the A Reserve Grade (1971,1986 and 1989). He won the A Reserve Grade Singles (1986) and Doubles (1971 with Robert Yee). Brian has won 10 Newlands Club Singles. He was on the Wellington Association Committee in 1964 and 1983-89. Brian was the Wellington Association’s Secretary (1983-89) and was elected a Wellington Vice President (1994). He had the top singles average in the Grade with 35/39 (89.7%). Brian O’Connor and Alan Dunn originally played for Johnsonville, with Bill Stevens. When the Club folded up they formed the Hardshots. The team had won the C Grade in 1990 and had the top 3 players in the interclub averages. Alan Dunn and Bill Stevens were top equal with 43 wins in 45 matches (95.6%). Brian O’Connor was 3rd with 36 wins in 45 matches (80%).
In the A Reserve Grade Championships, Malcolm Wong won the Singles against Martin Young. Malcolm retained the title he won the previous year against Jason Granville, a Wellington Under 19 Boys Representative and future Wellington Player. Malcolm Wong and Martin Young won the Doubles against Adrian Sutton and Simon Reed, and they were to retain the doubles title in 1992 and 1993.
In the Grades Match against Hutt Valley (11 August), The Wellington A Reserve Team lost 4-7.
Statistics for 1991: 1991 WTTA A Reserve Grade – Malcolm Wong
Nha was born in Saigon (1942) in Vietnam as the fourth of seven children. He started swimming at age 5 and excelled in the freestyle sprints. However there was a table tennis table at his home and he started playing at age 10 with his brothers, where he developed his trademark blocking style. These were his main sports though he also played tennis as an adult.
After gaining university entrance at high school he passed the entrance exam to study education at Saigon University (1959-63). He graduated with a Master of Arts degree in Education. He was the Captain of the swimming team and won the 100 and 200 freestyle at the University Swimming Championships (1959-63). He represented the University at the South Vietnam University Sports Tournament.
Also at the University was Inh Van Le, the Captain of the table tennis team, who was to represent South Vietnam in table tennis. Inh was to win the Southeast Asian Games Men’s Singles (1967) and Men’s Doubles (1969) and was runner up in the Men’s Doubles (1973). He was also a Men’s Doubles bronze medallist at the 1962 Asian Games with his brother Tiet Van Le, who was the French Open Singles Champion (1959) and was in the South Vietnam Men’s Team that won Gold (1958 Asian Games) and Bronze (1959 World Championships). Inh Van Le moved to Australia and is a table tennis coach and top veteran player, winning 36 Australian Individual Veteran Titles (1993-2013).
After university Nha attended teachers college for 4 years and then taught English at high school. He married in 1974 and in 1975 he was selected as a Columbo Plan student (12 from South Vietnam) and came to New Zealand to study English at Victoria University, Wellington. Three months after he left, South Vietnam was defeated in the war by North Vietnam. Nha became stateless and unable to return home but was given permanent resident in New Zealand by the Government and become a New Zealand Citizen the following year. After his course, Nha found work at the Department of Social Welfare. His wife and son finally managed to leave Vietnam and arrived in New Zealand in early 1979. Nha purchased a dairy in Hawker Street and was there for 3 years before moving to the Austin Street Dairy (1982-2009) before retiring.
Nha started playing table tennis at the Titan Club (1975) and his University A Team (with Huy Hoang and R Clark) won the Wellington Table Tennis A Reserve Grade (1978). In 1980 his Titan Team (with Adrian Lust, Warren Mak, Lindsay Ward) won the Wellington A Grade Competition. Nha was also in the Titan Terriors Team (with Lindsay Ward, Harry Singh, Robert Chung) that won Premier 1 in 2007.
Nha was ranked 11 times on the Wellington Men’s list and achieved a best ranking of 5 (2001) and represented Wellington at the New Zealand Championships and Veterans Championships in the veterans team. In 2008 Wellington, Eddie Moore and Nha, lost to North Harbour 2-3 in the Over 65 Men’s Team Final after earlier beating them 4-1 in group play. Nha won several veterans tournament singles titles including the Wanganui Over 40, Hutt Valley Open Over 50, Wellington Autumn Open Over 60 and Wellington Open Over 50 & 60. With Lindsay Ward, Nha won 15 veterans doubles tournament titles including 5 consecutive Wellington Open Over 40 Doubles (1998-2002).
Nha was the first winner of the Titan Club Singles Championships (1994) and he also won in 1996 and 1997. His oldest son, Win, a former Titan Premier 1 player (2000) also won the Club Singles three times (1998-2000) and won the 1999 Wairarapa Men’s Singles, Doubles and Mixed Doubles. Nha won the Club Doubles with Win (2000) and with Lindsay Ward (2008 & 2010). Nha also won the Titan Over 40 Singles in 1998 & 2001.
In tennis Nha joined the Wellington Club (1976) and continues to play there. His Wellington Team (with Adrian Lust, Peter Miller, Lindsay Ward, Graeme Hall) won the Third Grade (1995) and Second Grade (1996) in the Wellington Tennis Interclub Competition (1995/96 season). Adrian, Peter and Lindsay had all played top grade tennis and table tennis. Nha played in the New Zealand Tennis Veterans Championship in Blenheim (2000) and his photo appeared in the local newspaper.
Nha no longer plays interclub table tennis but still attends the Titan Club on Sunday mornings. He also walks, swims, plays tennis and snooker. His Petone snooker team was runner up in the Wellington Working Men’s Competition (2012). He hopes to continue playing table tennis for a very long time!
Lloyd was born in Wellington (1940). He started playing table tennis at age 7 because there was a table tennis table at his home. He and his father, brother and sister played. Audrey Hughes (1947 NZ Women’s Singles Champion) use to visit occasionally and play table tennis with the children. When Lloyd was 10, he played table tennis socially at the Cashmere Community Centre (Khandallah). Lloyd played football at school, as a centre back. He joined the Onslow Table Tennis Club at the age of 15. He recalls Ivan Houghton and Gary Roselli from his early days at the club. Paul Escott was to join the club 2 years later and they were to play in the same interclub team in the early 1960s. Lloyd received the most improved player award at the Onslow Club (1960).
After school Lloyd served a 5 year apprenticeship (10,000 hours) and qualified as an Upholsterer. He played football for Waterside and Johnsonville. In 1968 Lloyd joined the Tawa Club, which had been started by Colin Alexander and Richard Hull. He was to be in the same team as those two in the Kapiti A Grade Competition as well as Reg Hall, Bruce Lockhart, Chris Talbot, Ian Talbot and Murray Talbot. Lloyd was a member of a number of Kapiti Men’s Team that went to the New Zealand Championships between 1981 and 1992. He was the top ranked Man in Kapiti (1980).
In 1977 Lloyd joined the Johnsonville Men’s Club. He was to become Vice President (1997-2011) and was elected a life member (2008). He is still the welfare officer there. Lloyd has won the Johnsonville Men’s Club Singles 12 times. In Wellington Interclub Lloyd has played in the Wellington A Grade and then the Premier 1 and 2 Grades (1981-2012), mainly for Johnsonville. His team included Tony Radford, Ann Gyongyos, Nha Nguyen, Ian Talbot, Martin Young, Colin Alexander, Bob Bell, Jim Pandelidis and Paul Escott. Lloyd won the 2000 Wellington Masters Games Over 55 Men’s Singles and Doubles.
Lloyd has a keen interest in motorbikes and owns 7 bikes. He joined the the Ulysses Club (1980) for motorbike riders over the age of 40. Lloyd has been on the Brass Monkey Rally, held over Queen’s Birthday weekend, at Oturehua (Central Otago) on 15 occasions. He has also been on the Cold Kiwi Run, held south of Waiouru, and the Cold Duck Run, in Waipawa.This year Lloyd has became the CEO of The Rusty Nuts Motorcycle Club. The Club organises rallies, including the Grand Challenge, a 1,000 miles (1,609 km) 24 hour event each October. Also the Southern Cross Road Rally (6 day event) from Cape Reinga to Bluff (6,500 km) which is held every 2 years.
This year Lloyd has stopped playing interclub table tennis. He is teaching a community education course in Upholstery at Onslow College three nights a week and on Saturday morning. In his leisure time Lloyd enjoys being on the water in yachts and boats. He is a great grand father and loves looking after his 2 great grand children (both boys). He still plays at the Johnsonville Men’s Club and intends to play at the 2014 World Veterans Championships in Auckland.
Hugh was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland (1931). He left school at 14 and worked in the shipyard (2 years). Hugh then served a 5 year apprenticeship to qualify as a baker. His grandfather, Warmington, was a champion baker in Belfast. Hugh lived in Bisley Street and started playing football at 15 for the Bisley Street team as a goalie. Later he played for the Agnes Street Methodist Church team which won Division 2 (1949/50) in the Methodist Church League.
In 1954 Hugh moved to London and loved living in the city. He supported the Arsenal Football Club as he lived near their stadium at Highbury, North London. Hugh watched the team play midweek as he was playing football himself in the weekend. Hugh meet the English singer, Matt Monro, who was a friend of his boss. In 1958 he emigrated to Australia and lived in Redcliffe, near Brisbane. While there, Tommy Steele, the English singer/actor was a guest player for the Annerly Football Club team Hugh played for.
In 1963 Hugh moved to Auckland. Later he moved to Masterton (1977) to set up a bakery. Hugh sold the bakery to Alastair Naysmith (1980) with who he was later to play Wellington interclub table tennis with. Hugh then moved to Timaru, where he has relatives, to set up another bakery. While there he coached the Timaru Girls High School Football first eleven, which won the local competition for 3 consecutive years. He moved to Dunedin (1986) to set up another bakery, and finally to Masterton (1994) where he still lives today.
Hugh started playing table tennis at the Red Star Club in Masterton (1994). Among the players there were Peter Greenlees, who had coached Margaret Hoar (NZ Women Singles Champion 7 times between 1948 and 1957). Peter helped Hugh to significantly improve his table tennis. Hugh said he modelled his game on Peter’s.
Hugh started travelling to Wellington to play at the Titan Club (1998) on Sunday mornings, with Alastair Naysmith, as both were improving and needed to play stronger players. Soon they were playing Wellington interclub (2000-2008) which meant a 3 hour return trip from Masterton.
Hugh’s perseverance paid off and soon he was winning Titan Club Veteran Titles, including the Over 60 and 70 Singles. He started playing tournaments and won the Manawatu Over 70 Men’s Singles (2004). Success came to Hugh in the older age groups in the NZ Veterans Championships. He has won the Over 75 Men’s Singles (2006 & 2008), the Over 75 Men’s Doubles (2006 & 2007) and the Over 80 Men’s Doubles (2013). To paraphrase the current Ping Pong film, you are never too old to win gold medals.
Hugh is a bionic man, with 2 hip and 3 knee replacements. He still plays at the Red Star Club and the Titan Club. Hugh continues to play in the NZ Masters Games (Wanganui) and NZ Veterans Championships. He intends to play at the 2014 World Veterans Tournament in Auckland. Photo from the Glenburn TTC – stop on by next time you’re in Northern Ireland!
Reg was born in the town of Darwen (1927), which is near Blackburn in Lancashire, England. He left school at 14, and served a 7 year apprenticeship to qualify as a carpenter and joiner. After the war Australia, Canada, New Zealand and South Africa were looking for migrants. Reg wanted to go to South Africa but his older brother, Bill, advised him to go to New Zealand.
He travelled to Wellington, New Zealand by ship (6 weeks) and arrived in September 1949. His first job was at Swansons Joinery Shop (Newtown) and on his first day he meet the late Jack Blackmore (former Titan Club and Wellington President). They made up a table and played table tennis at lunch time and after work. Reg and Jack joined the St Thomas Club (Newtown) and played interclub for them in 1950-51.
In 1952 Reg married Yvonne. Work and family took precedence and he gave up table tennis for the next 20 years. He built his home in Island Bay in his spare time (1954) and still lives in the place today. Reg found time to play football for the Wellington Working Club for a few years. In 1966 Reg formed his own building company, R V Seddon Limited, and built many residential and commercial buildings.
When the Newtown Stadium was built (1971-72) Reg become a member of the stadium club, Titan. He played interclub again. Reg served on the Wellington Table Tennis Association Committee (1976). In 1981 the Wellington Association gave him free life membership of the stadium club, for his volunteer work in improving the lighting and installing the seating at the Stadium. Reg won veterans titles at the Titan Club Championships and at the Wellington Tournament. The highlight of his table tennis was playing for the NZ Over 50 Men’s Team at the 1988 Australian Veteran’s Tournament (Melbourne).
Today Reg is still active but does not play much table tennis. He has a fine singing voice and plays several musical instruments, including the piano, saxophone, clarinet, ukulele and mouth organ. May there be many years ahead for him.
– Malcolm Wong
L/R back: Reg Seddon, Bruce Connolly
2nd from back: Ron Menchi, Ray Rowland, Eric Neal, John Lelliott, Warren Evans
3rd from back: Isabel Cleland, Nancy Brant, Thelma May, Pat McArthur
front row: Margurette Green, Christine Cunningham
L/R: Ray Rowland, Reg Seddon, Ron Menchi, John Lelliott
This is the latest player profile from Malcolm Wong:
In 1950 Brian (then 15 years old) joined the Technical Table Tennis Club in Wellington. There were 2 tables in the Technical Old Students Tennis Pavilion in Taranaki Street, which is today occupied by Massey University. On Sundays Brian would often play from noon to late at night. He recalled that players had to prove they were a certain standard to join the club. There was a limit on the membership and good players were asked to join the club, rather than the other way around.
The Technical Club was formed in 1936. The Club has won 32 Wellington interclub titles including 6 A Grade (1939-41, 1943-44 & 1946). The A Grade team included Frank Mooney, Wellington’s top ranked man (1943) who was also a wicket keeper in the NZ Cricket Team (1949-54). The W M Jackson Shield (Most interclub points) was won twice (1946 & 1977). The Sportswear Model Trophy (Highest point average for 3 nominated teams from a club) was won 6 times (1974, 1977, 1981, 1987, 1989 & 1990). The most interclub teams entered were 11 in 1971 & 1977.
Club members were involved in several notable achievements. Max Gosling was selected for the first ever NZ Team in a match against the touring Hungarian Team (1938). Eric Boniface was selected for the first NZ Team to travel overseas (1939). The team travelled to Australia for matches against state teams. John Crossley and John Stewart were in the first NZ Team at the World Championships in Budapest, Hungary (1950). Crossley won the first international title by a New Zealander when he won the Scottish Open Men’s Singles held in Edinburgh (1950). Gosling (1939), Boniface (1940-41) and Crossley (1944) were ranked Number 1 in Wellington and all won the Wellington Open Men’s Singles. Crossley was North Island Men’s Singles Champion (1949).
29 New Zealand Open Titles were won. The first was achieved in 1940 when Dawn Croxton won the Women’s Doubles with Leonie Kennedy, and the Mixed Doubles with Max Gosling. This was the first year of the NZ Inter-Association Teams Championships and Wellington won both the Men’s and Women Teams Title. Club members representing Wellington were Max Gosling and Eric Boniface (Men) and Leonie Kennedy, Dawn Croxton and May Wareham (Women).
In 1950 Club members were in all 5 NZ Open individual finals. John Crossley lost to Bob Jackson (Auckland) in the Men’s Singles. John won the Men’s Doubles with Neville Brightwell (Canterbury). Margaret Hoar won the Women Singles, Woman Doubles with Thyra McGregor, and the Mixed Doubles with Owen Jaine (Auckland). As well, Murray Dunn won the NZ Under 16 Boys Singles that year. Murray was to win a record 9 Wellington Open Men’s Singles and also 4 NZ Men’s Singles (1960-63).
Margaret Hoar was the number 1 ranked Wellington and NZ Woman (1949-50) when she was at the Club. She was the Wellington, North Island and NZ Women’s Singles Champion in those years. Christine Beasley (nee McGregor) was the number 1 ranked Women for 7 consecutive years (1973-79) and won 10 Wellington Open titles including 5 Women’s Singles (1973-74, 1976-78). She was also an excellent tennis player and won the Wellington Tennis Open Women Singles (1979), achieving a unique tennis/table tennis double.
In 1967 the club moved to the Te Rama Tennis Pavilion in Kilbirnie when the Technical Tennis Pavilion had to make way for new buildings. In 1972 the club changed its name to Te Rama to meet city council requirements to stay at the site as the tennis club had folded up. In 1984 the club moved to the Kilbirnie Gym due to the Aqua Centre being built where the Tennis Pavilion was. In 1985 the club moved to St Giles Church Hall and later to the Newtown Stadium. A team was last entered in interclub in 2001.
Brian Hearfield started off in F Grade and was in C Grade the following year. He played mainly in B grade. He recalls filling in at A Grade interclub and playing Murray Dunn, Geoff Jennings, John Crossley, Ron Foster and Ivan Houghton. In 1956 at the Hutt Valley Open, Brian and Bill Stewart (both C Graders) upset Mike Beder/Stan Ferguson ( NZ Boys Doubles Champions 1955) to reach the quarter finals where they lost to the top seeds, Murray Dunn/John Crossley (NZ Men’s Doubles Champions 1954). Brian has been in 9 Technical/Te Rama winning winter interclub teams (See below).
A Reserve A Grade 1963 Brian Hearfield, Foon Chin, Thyra McGregor
B Grade 1966 Brian Hearfield, Jack Ngan, Diane Bates
1974 Brian Hearfield, Ray Bryan, Dawn Perks, Judy Sharman
1977 Brian Hearfield, D Hitchcock, Roger Watkin
1989 Brian Hearfield, Henry Anastasi, Malcolm Wong
1990 Brian Hearfield, Roger Watkin, Peter Wong
1993 Brian Hearfield, David Feist, Roger Watkin, Giles Moiser
C Grade 1959 Brian Hearfield, John Wilcox, Andy Curran
1986 Brian Hearfield. Malcolm Wong, Jeff Larsen, Olaf Leijon
Brian had the highest interclub average in B Grade (1990, 1991 & 1993). His best result was 37 wins from 39 matches (94.9%) in the B Grade (1985, 1990). He won the B Grade Singles (1966) and the B Grade Doubles with David Fry (1965) and Bruce Mills (1966). Brian represented Wellington in the annual match against Hutt Valley 7 times. C Grade (1959), B Grade (1965, 1966, 1974, 1989, 1990) and B/C Grade (1993). Wins were achieved in 1959 (7-5) 1965 (10-2) 1966 (9-3). He donated the Brian Hearfield Cup for the B Grade Singles at the Wellington Grade Championships. The first winner was fellow club member Henry Anastasi in 1989.
Brian has been Secretary, Treasurer and Club Captain for the Club. He served on the Wellington Committee (1962-77) and (1992-2009). He was a long serving member of the interclub subcommittee and chaired it when there were 167 interclub teams. Brian was the Secretary/Treasurer (1999-2001) and Secretary (2002-2009). He was a regular sight on night duty at interclub. Brian is a Life Member of the Te Rama Club (1980) and the Wellington Association (1994).
Brian played cricket for Institute Old Boys, Wellington South Institute, Technical College Old Boys and Onslow. His 1971-72 Onslow team included Trevor Mallard (Labour Member of Parliament since 1984 and former Minister (1999-2008). He was a batsman/wicket keeper with a highest score of 85 not out. Brian was in three winning teams: Technical College Old Boys 3B (1958/59); Technical College Old Boys 5th Grade (1960/61); and Onslow 3C (1972/73). The Onslow 3C Team also included a young Kevin Haines, the current TTW Treasurer.
Here is the latest player profile from Malcolm Wong:
Eddie was born in Christchurch (1932). There was no organised sport during his time at primary school. In his secondary school days, at Christchurch Technical College, he excelled in football and cricket as well as playing table tennis for the Avonside Table Tennis Club from the age of 15 to 25. Eddie was in the first XI for both football and cricket. In football, as a centre forward, his outstanding performance in the South Island Schools Tournament (1949) resulted in him becoming selected as a South Island Schools representative. In cricket his rapid improvement lead him to be selected for the Canterbury Under 16 Boys team (1947) as a spin bowler, a team which included future NZ representative Murray Chapple (1953-66).
After Eddie left school, work and family took precedence over sport. In 1972 he moved to Wellington on a job transfer. When he retired at 60, Eddie was looking for a sport to play. He wanted to play tennis but there was no men at the local Midweek Club. A chance meeting with Ron Menchi lead to him joining the Empire Midweek Table Tennis Club (1992-93) where he became the Secretary. Eddie moved back down to Christchurch in 1993 and rejoined the Avonside Table Tennis Club. He immediately became the Secretary/Treasurer (1993-2003). He started up the Canterbury Midweek Table Tennis Club based on what he had seen at the Empire Midweek Club.
The then Canterbury Table Tennis Hall needed substantial repairs and planning permission for this would not be approved as it was in a residential area. Eddie with Keith Armstrong and Ron Fleming became involved in the purchase of the former Yates Seed Store(1999) for table tennis. They with Denver Glass, Neville Duggan and Brian Wilson were the driving force behind the conversion of the building into the current Table Tennis Canterbury Stadium (294 Blenheim Road), opening in early 2000. The six were presented with an appreciation medal by Table Tennis Canterbury. Eddie was further recognised for his endeavours by being made a Life Member of Table Tennis Canterbury and receiving a Summer Sports Award from Sport Canterbury in 2000. He was Table Tennis Canterbury Sportsperson of the Year (2002). Eddie returned to Wellington in 2003 and was responsible for running the Empire Midweek club, with Lois McStay, until 2009. He was awarded the Dick Gray Cup for Best Empire Club Member (2008) and the Empire Table Tennis Cup for Most Outstanding Performance(2009). There is a volunteer profile on Eddie in the Empire Spin Newsletter (August 2008).
Eddie soon made an impact in veterans table tennis. He was in the NZ Over 50 Men’s team to the Australian Veterans in Perth (1994). There he caused a hugh upset in a teams match by beating Ken Cole, who had just won the NZ Open Over 45 Men’s Singles. In 1999 Eddie was number 85 on the NZ Open Men’s rating list at the age of 67! In 2008 he won the NZ Open Over 70 Men’s Singles and Mixed Doubles (with Lois McStay). Eddie has represented New Zealand four times in the Over 70 Men’s team in the test against Australia. He has won 12 individual NZ Veterans titles including the Over 70 Men’s Singles (2002) and the Over 75 Men’s Singles (2007 & 2009).
Eddie had an outstanding performance in the NZ Veterans Over 75 Men’s singles (2009). Eddie defeated the second seed, Geoff Nisbett, in the semi finals and then the top seed, Tony Herbert, in the final. Tony was then the current Australian Veterans Over 70 and 75 Men’s Singles Champion. Eddie continues to play table tennis at the Empire Midweek Club and hopes to play at the World Veteran’s Championships (2014) in Auckland.
Above: NZ Veterans Test Team (2008) for the match against Australia
Back Row (L/R): Christine Little, Sabine Westenra, Jim Jarmin, Eddie Moore, Fleming Alison, Lyndon White, Bill Stewart, Dave Scott, Bryan McConnochie.
Front Row (L/R): Pauline Bennyworth, Chip Eade, Lynnette Bellamy, Gerry Doyle, Alison Williamson, Lesley Gardner, Lindsay Ward, Raewyn Young.
Photo: TTNZ Archives
Thanks to Malcolm Wong for another player profile! Depak Patel is a Empire Premier 1 player and a ITTF level 1 coach. He was born in the town of Pardi in the state of Gujarat (India). When he was 3 months old the family immigrated to England. After a 3 month journey by ship they settled in Leicester, the largest city in the East Midlands.
Depak played football (left winger) at school from age 10. Among his team mates was Winston White (right winger), who was to play professionally for Leicester and several other clubs (1976-93) making 529 appearances and scoring 61 goals. Playing for a rival school team was Gary Lineker (striker), who went on to played 80 times for England (48 goals). Depak was in the football team that were the Midlands Asian Students 5 a side Champions. He is a supporter of both Leicester City and Chelsea Football Teams.
Depak started playing table tennis at the local youth club at age 13. A teacher at his high school encouraged him to go to a Saturday coaching group. He joined Abbey Table Tennis Club and started off in Division 15 which his team won in his first season (1976). Depak progressed through to Division 4 before he moved to London. There he joined Ashford Table Tennis Club where he played Division 1 in 1988/89 and 1989/90. The Club won the British League (1988/89) with a team full of internationals including the Belgian, Jean-Michael Saive (The future European Men’s Singles Champion in1994 and World Number 1) and New Zealander Peter Jackson. Depak won the National Asian Students Table Tennis Singles, Doubles and Mixed Doubles in 1981 and 1984.
Depak also played cricket. He played for the Universal Cricket Club at 14 in the same team was his older brother. Depak was in the team that won the Leicester Liger Festival of Cricket Tournament (1976). His team included 4 Indian test players including Dilip Doshi who was a friend of his older brother in India. The other Indian test players were Ashok Mankad, Brijesh Patel and Madan Lal. The trophy was presented by Mushtaq Mohammad, the former Pakistan Cricket Captain. Depak’s best season was in 1990 for the Sunbury Village Cricket Club where he took the most wickets (75), had the most 5 wicket bags and had the most ‘Man of the Match’ awards during the season. Depak scored his only century (107 n.o.) when he carried the bat through out the innings for the Papatoetoe Cricket Club Presidents team (2000)
Depak moved to New Zealand in 1991 and has lived in Wellington and Auckland. Currently Depak plays and coaches at the Empire Club. He has won the Titan Club Singles twice (2007 & 2008) and the Empire Club Singles on 3 occasions (2004, 2009 & 2010). Depak was in the Wellington O45 Team that won the NZ Teams twice (2006 with Bryan McConnochie) and (2008 with Chris Talbot & Lindsay Ward). Depak was selected for the NZ Veterans team in the test against Australia (2007). He was the Captain of the NZ Over 50 Men’s Team at the Australian Veterans Tournament (2010). He has won 78 tournament titles including the North Island Over 40 Men’s Singles (2009). Depak said his best tournament wins were against Craig Dye and Thomas Samuelson. He is still very keen about playing table tennis and practises up to 4 times a week.