Watson back in time for TT Nationals
Three-time national table tennis champion Kane Watson shook off some ring rust to win his first tournament since a summer injury at the weekend.
Watson's men's singles win at the annual Supersonics Table Tennis Club Back-to-School Tournament came just days before the 2017 National Championships to be held at the G.C. Foster College for Sport and Physical Education. The tall right-hander took the title with a straight set success over experienced Alphanso Morris at the Chinese Benevolent Association auditorium in Kingston.
Injured on national duty at the Caribbean Region Championships in July, Watson struggled in the first two sets of the final but won 13-11, 12-10, 11-3 as Morris used his pimpled backhand rubber to vary the pace.
"It took me a while to get adjusted to it again because my legs not fully there," he reviewed afterwards, "but in the third set, I felt more comfortable and I just let it rip, and it stopped giving me trouble from there on."
In the third and final set, Watson's reverse pendulum forehand serve had Morris playing into the net on several occasions.
Watson, $20,000 richer for his endeavours, was especially glad that his injuries are behind him.
"It's my first tournament since my injury early summer, so I feel good and I'm raring to go," he said gratefully.
MORE TO COME
The 30-year-old is looking forward not just to this week's Nationals but to international assignments, including the Commonwealth Games in April. "That's four months away so with that, I'll have more tournaments under my belt, more training and prior to that, in late February also, I have Central American and Caribbean Games qualifiers, so that is again coming up fast," he accounted. "So with tournaments in 2018, it's looking like I need to be at 100 per cent," he explained, "So I'm definitely going towards that. The end goal is to have a great 2018 and [an] injury-free 2018," he intoned.
Though Morris upset another former national champion, Christopher Marsh, to reach the final, the big winner in the Chinese Benevolent Association, Xsoma Paper, Key Insurance and Bob Marley Foundation-sponsored tournament was young Conroy Henry. The Ardenne High School first-former brought joy to his Supersonics clubmates by playing his way to first place in the under-18, under-15 and under-13 categories.