Grand Prix success for Morpeth's Hoang
PUBLISHED: 07:15 26 November 2008 | UPDATED: 13:49 05 October 2010
MORPETH SCHOOL table tennis star Sally Hoang is celebrating her first senior women s singles title after overcoming a host of more experienced opponents at the prestigious Butterfly Bristol Senior Grand Prix
MORPETH SCHOOL table tennis star Sally Hoang is celebrating her first senior women's singles title after overcoming a host of more experienced opponents at the prestigious Butterfly Bristol Senior Grand Prix last week.
The 14-year-old eliminated Wales international Angharad Phillips, the top seed, in a convincing quarter-final victory, before prevailing against Jasmin Ould and Tressa Armitage to secure the title in the women's Band Three event.
Hoang admitted afterwards that her triumph had taken her by surprise, but paid tribute to Morpeth coach Grant Solder for overseeing her development in the sport.
"I was thrilled by my achievement in the Grand Prix. This is my first ever senior women's title and I've exceeded my expectations. I'm very proud of what I've achieved so far," Hoang said.
Morpeth had further reason for celebration as 13-year-old Majada Yasmin, another strong prospect from the school, reached the semi-finals of the event before losing a nail-biting last-four encounter to Armitage.
Despite a gutsy fight against her older opponent, Yasmin eventually succumbed 11-9 in the fifth set.
Hoang was able to avenge her team-mate's defeat after cruising into the final with a pair of dominant wins in the knockout rounds.
She saw off No 1 seed Phillips 3-0 in the last eight before defeating Ould, from Kent, in a convincing 3-1 semi-final triumph.
That victory set up a final encounter with Armitage, who was overwhelmed by Hoang's sharp attacking power in a 3-1 win for the Morpeth pupil.
Former Morpeth table tennis star Simon Hoang, who was recently appointed as an assistant coach at the school, hailed his sister's victory as a significant breakthrough.
He said: "Sally's performance at this senior women's event is a clear reflection of her hard work and dedication to the sport.
"I expect more of this high level table tennis from her in the very near future.