King conquers at London Grand Prix

Yolanda King was victorious at the Bribar London Grand Prix
Yolanda King was victorious at the Bribar London Grand Prix

Table tennis talent Yolanda King was victorious at the Bribar London Grand Prix in Redbridge.

The 18-year-old, who is currently training at the Grantham Academy, took a break from A Level revision to win the women’s band one singles.

Ultimately, the England number eight woman, seeded two, was a comfortable victor after beating Welsh international Nicole Hall, who she had overcome 3-1 in her group, 11-8, 11-7, 6-11, 11-7.

Jasmin Ould (Tunbridge Wells) gave King a shock by leading 2-1 in their main women’s singles group match, but the Hastings player pulled through to win 3-2. She also beat her other two opponents to qualify for the knockout stage and went on to reach the quarter-finals where she faced second seed and England number four Karina Le Fevre (Cleveland).

Playing aggressively well with heavy spin serves and big topspin drives, King looked set for a big victory when she led by two games and was 9-7 up in the third. The quick counter-hitting Le Fevre fought back to lead 10-9, but King regained the initiative for a match point at 13-12.

Although King, from the Weald Table Tennis Club in Cranbrook, lost that game and the fourth, she led 9-7 in the decider before Le Fevre took the last four points for a 6-11, 8-11, 15-13, 11-7, 11-9 victory.

Seeded one in the under-21 women’s singles, a tired and slightly despondent King struggled to win her group, being taken to a fifth game by Sophie Neil (Nottinghamshire), ranked 38.

Having failed to consistently regain her zip and spirit, King suffered a disappointing 10-12, 11-6, 4-11, 11-6, 7-11 loss in the semi-finals to the dangerous Evie Collier (Essex).