Table tennis community saddened by death of popular player

Keen table tennis player and cyclist Konrad Pieterse.
Keen table tennis player and cyclist Konrad Pieterse.

The Hastings & District Table Tennis League community has been plunged into sadness by the sudden death of popular player Konrad Pieterse.

Konrad was a well-liked character who has played for Bexhillians TTC since 2010 having represented Willett & Phillips TTC for the previous seven years.

Trevor Towner, of Bexhillians TTC, said: “The words I would use to describe him are a gentleman, respected, humble, caring, helpful, devoted and well-liked. Even when he lost he would always congratulate his opponent and say ‘well done’. He was such a nice, top guy.”

Konrad, from Bexhill, died after being involved in a fatal collision with a car on Battery Hill, near Fairlight, last Thursday morning just after setting off on a charity cycle ride to Belgium.

Barry Turnwell, who runs Willett & Phillips, said: “He was one of those people who gave such a lot to life and people loved him dearly.

“He was really just a lovely, gentle man, a real Christian man who was extremely fond of his faith. He was a great sportsman - he was a superb table tennis player and he also loved his cycling. He was very fit.”

Although Konrad left Willett & Phillips (who play at the Christchurch Methodist Hall in Springfield Road) after seven years to play at a higher level with Bexhillians (who play at the Bexhill Youth & Community Centre in Station Road), Turnwell remained good friends with Konrad and his family, and saw them regularly.

“He was very sporting, lovely to chat to and very friendly in a quiet way,” Turnwell added. “They’re quite a quiet and reflective family and to have this tragedy happen to them is just horrendous.”

Konrad, who was 55, was also a member of Eastbourne Rovers Cycling Club.

There will be a service at Pevensey Bay Baptist Church from 1pm on Thursday July 6 followed by a funeral at Eastbourne Crematorium from 2.30pm. After that there will be a gathering back at the church.

Donations can be made to Charity for Kids c/o Arthur C. Towner Ltd, Audley House, 1 Albert Road, Bexhill, TN40 1DG.