Olympians and Paralympians set to compete for national titles in Hatfield

PUBLISHED: 16:19 24 February 2016 | UPDATED: 16:38 24 February 2016

Liam Pitchford. Picture by Alan Man.

Liam Pitchford. Picture by Alan Man.

Archant

Olympic and Paralympic table tennis stars will be heading to Hatfield for the sport's National Championships in March.

Hertfordshire Sports Village will host the top English players as they battle it out for supremacy.

Leading the field will be reigning men’s and women’s singles champions and London 2012 Olympians Liam Pitchford and Kelly Sibley.

Pitchford, who won three medals at the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games, will be aiming to win his fourth successive title but will be pushed by fellow Olympian Paul Drinkhall. Both men are currently well placed to qualify for this year’s Rio Olympics.

Sibley is a five-time National Champion and will be joined in the field by fellow Glasgow 2014 medallist Tin-Tin Ho.

As well as the men’s and women’s singles, the tournament features doubles, under-21 singles, a team event and, for the first time, a Para competition.

The latter will see world champion and Paralympic silver medallist Will Bayley in action, up against a number of athletes who also featured on the London 2012 podium and will be aiming to qualify for Rio.

The event begins on Friday March 18, with the team competition and the early rounds of singles.

The Para competition and under-21 events will be played on Saturday March 19, with the doubles and singles latter stages and championship matches to be played on Sunday March 20.

Tickets are on sale for all three days, starting at £5.

Visit www.theticketfactory.com for tickets.

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