Dunman High clinch historic B Div boys’ table tennis title, Latest School Sports News - The New Paper
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Dunman High clinch historic B Div boys’ table tennis title

A forehand smash from Dunman High School’s Ethan Teo sparked frenzied celebrations at the Pasir Ris Sport Hall on April 3, as his table tennis teammates pushed through court barriers to lift their hero into their arms.

They had every reason to rejoice, as Ethan had just made history for his school.

His 3-1 (9-11, 11-6, 11-6, 13-11) victory against Raffles Institution’s (RI) Joshua Tang in the decisive match gave Dunman their first-ever B Division table tennis boys’ title in the National School Games.

Ethan, 15, said: “I couldn’t believe it. I feel very happy because I didn’t expect myself to beat Joshua. I just told myself even if I lose, I’m the underdog.”

In the first singles, Chan Jinghe gave Dunman the lead with a straightforward 11-7, 11-7, 11-2 win over Manyong Koh.

But Sirius Chong and Li Kai Jie then levelled the score when they breezed past Heng Yeow Leng and Wang Zelin 11-6, 11-2, 11-5 before Dunman captain Wang Yirong beat Haw Hong Yu 3-0 (11-8, 11-7, 11-5) to restore the advantage.

But the duo of Jedd Kua and Jeremiah Pang from RI forced the decider after they swept aside Daniel Zang and Goh Dong Ze 3-0 (11-6, 11-4, 11-5).

Next up was Ethan, who found the odds stacked against him as he faced Joshua, who is a member of the national youth training squad.

But after losing the first game, the Secondary 3 student composed himself to win the next three. It was a situation he was familiar with – he had helped Dunman seal their spot in the final in similar circumstances against Catholic High School.

He overturned 1-6 and 7-10 deficits in the fourth game, winning six of the final seven points to seal the victory.

Dunman captain Yirong, 16, credited the victory to their intensive training programme of four sessions a week. He added: “All of us skipped many lessons and some missed exams also.

“Before our matches, we watched a lot of our opponents’ competition videos. We prepared a lot... and knew their weak spots.”

There was, however, some consolation for the Rafflesian family, as Raffles Girls’ School (RGS) defeated Nanyang Girls’ High School 4-1 in the girls’ final to reclaim the title they lost to Dunman in 2023.

RGS Secondary 3 student Naomi Lum, who partnered Raeshyn Ang to win their last point against Justine Ng and Pu Keng Tuan in the second doubles, said: “We felt very motivated because we lost last year. We wanted to help our seniors win before they graduate.

“Both of us usually get very nervous during matches. But thanks to the support of our teammates and coaches, we were confident today and able to play our best.”