The beautiful Queens Hall in Ards provided the venue for the much anticipated commencement of the: Des Flanagan Investment Solutions Ulster Masters Table Tennis Series.


Top players from all over Ulster travelled to the Ulster ranking event with the” Ards Open”,” the “Ards Masters over 40s” and the “Ards Masters over 60s”, all being contested


The keenly contested “Ards Open” marked a return to form of Cookstown’s service maestro Mark McAllister who presently plays out of St Anne’s in Dungannon. In the final he defeated his old adversary and recently crowned 2023 Ulster Masters player of the year, Sean McAnnaney, in a real ding dong battle, The defeated semi-finalists Aaditya Singh and Tomasz Toman had a titanic battle in the third and fourth playoff. Both players renowned for there attacking prowess entertained the audience with their all out attacking play with Aaditya eventually taking the spoils.

The Consolation event was won by Ormeau’s Chris White who defeated Ballymena’s Peter Neeson in the final.


The “Ards Masters over 40s” was won by the fast looping Rodney McKirgan from St Anne’s Table Tennis Club in Dungannon who edged past Omagh Table Tennis Club veteran and Masters Series sponsor, Des Flanagan in a competitive final.. The over 40s’ Consolation was won by Annahilt ace Roy Coard narrowly defeating Castlewellan’s John Huyton.


The “Ards Masters over 60s” was won by the event Sponsor Des Flanagan who came back from two sets to one down to beat Ballymena’s pimpled rubber specialist Oliver McQuillan. The Consolation event was won by the ever consistent Tom Donnelly who defeated Ormeau’s Jeff Irvine in the final.


A big thank you to the Ards Table Tennis Club who were perfect hosts with a special mention to the ladies in the club for the tasty refreshments. And last but not least, a big thank you to the Referee Adrian Brown, his Assistant Adam Brown and head umpire Jay McAllister for their sterling work on the day.


Round two of the Series is on the 23rd September in Ballymena. Entries directly to Norman McBride at n5mcb@btinternet,com or to by 15th September 2023