Mia Pemberton from Ashton-on-Mersey School and Hal Dwobeng from Altrincham Grammar, both aged 13, won their schools’ heats to progress to the finals where, last year, they emerged victorious.
Unfortunately, the pair were unable to defend United’s title, however they were both thrilled to discuss the sport with Nani, a keen table-tennis player himself, at first-team training ground at Carrington.
“I played a lot when I was younger and represented my school,” the United star said. “I still love the game and it’s great to see children picking it up and doing well.”
Mia and Hal both took up table tennis as part of the PL4Sport scheme, a Premier League initiative that has given students nationwide the chance to participate in table tennis, judo, badminton and volleyball in the run up to next year’s Summer Olympics.
Manchester United’s PL4S Coordinator Justin Davies commented, “Our youngsters played superbly. It’s a shame about the result but meeting Nani more than made up for it. We are already looking forward to coming back to next year’s Fred Perry Urban Cup Finals.”