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Tom ready to represent Ireland

Wednesday, 4 April 2018

Tom ready to represent Ireland thumbnailTom Irwin

A KILLYMAN Primary School pupil is all set to represnt Ireland at a table tennis tournament in Scotland.

Tom Irwin is just 11-years-old and has been playing table tennis for just two years but such is his ability that he has already been selected to represent Ulster at U13 level.

Having trained with the Ulster development squad for a year and a half and with the Irish performance squad for a year, Tom is more than ready to embrace the challenge of playing for Ireland in Largs, Scotland.

"I started to play table tennis when my dad introduced me to the game," Tom told the Courier.

 "I have got quite good at it, I really enjoy it but I know I am only as good as I am because I spend time training.

"The sport has been great for me, I have made quite a few friends from across Ireland, Craigavon and Lisburn through training events and competitions."

Dedicating eight hours a week across three nights to training, Tom clearly loves the sport and the many benefits that come with it.

 He started playing competitive table tennis in the local Greystone League last season.

This season he is playing in Division three of the Belfast & District (B&D) League with his older brother, Daniel.

He also competes in Ulster & Irish Ranking competitions, and won the U13 boys event at the Craigavon Open Ulster Ranking Tournament in October.

"Training takes place at St Anne's Church on Tuesday 6.30-9pm and Thursday 7 to 9.30pm" said Tom.

"We stay fit by running laps around the hall. I enjoy sports and also play football, tennis and hockey but table tennis is my passion.

"I have been really lucky as the sport has already given me many fantastic opportunities, I have been to training camps in Sweden and a tournament in Hungary and I cant wait to represent Ireland in Scotland, it will be a fantastic experience."

Tom's local club,  St Anne's is a small rural club run entirely by enthusiastic volunteers and is always looking for new members.

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