Stonehouse table tennis star Billy Shilton has been named in a 12-strong squad from the British Para Table Tennis Team that will compete in the Lignano Master Open in Italy this week (March 15-17) - the first international tournament of the 2018 season.

Shilton won a bronze medal in the men’s class 8 team event at the European Championships last year and finished the season by taking medals in Belgium and Spain, including gold in the men’s class 9 team event in Belgium.

“Training has been going great,” said the 19 year old. “I feel like the hard work we have all been putting in on and off the table will make a big difference. My goal for Italy will be to take a medal but as long as I play my best table tennis and use all the things we have been working on in the training hall these past few months in my matches I will be really pleased.

“The medals in Belgium and Spain have motivated me a lot as in both competitions I feel like I didn’t play my best table tennis and still managed to take some medals. If I can approach this year with a better mind-set I feel that I can really start to progress. My aim this year is to climb up the world ranking list as much as possible to put myself in a great position for Tokyo when qualification starts next year.”