GARY Bates and Mark Titchener saw off the challenge of 17 other pairs to win the men's competition at the Basingstoke and District Badminton League Open.

The pairs were split into three groups, with Group A was headed by joint top seeds James Cooper/Ben Ansell from Reading. They dropped two points to eventual group winners, Wycombe’s Richard Wheeler/Ben Cornish, to finish second.

The rest of the group was made up of Basingstoke pairs Nick Reid/ Martin Davey, Peter Bevell/Andrew Mountford and newcomers Saurabh Bhandari/Vikesh Muralidharin and Robert Jackson/Sam Kersley.

Group B was won by Reading’s Max Northfield/Edrick Satya, with a Bas-ingstoke pair new to the tournament, Manoj/Sudeep, finishing second.

Home pairs Michael Nash/Keith Miles and Stephen Lambe/Neil Atkins were third and fourth, ahead of Reading pairings Brian Edelman/ Nils Pagotto and Matthew Thorpe/ Nick Nowak.

Swindon pair Gary Bates/Mark Titchener won all their games in Group C to finish ahead of Hawley duo Andy Manors/Dan Sheppard.

Two Basingstoke pairs, Vince Yong/Khem Limbu and Keith Palmer/Mark Bayliss came next, ahead of Southampton’s Andrew Adams/Rizky Geofani and Chris Ackroyd/Sam Bizley.

The first men’s semi-final was between the winners of Group B Northfield/Satya, and the best second-placed pair, Cooper/Ansell. In a very tight game, Northfield/ Satya came out on top, 21-20.

The winners of Group A and Group C contested the second semi-final, which saw Bates/Titchener beat Wheeler/Cornish 21-14.

They then also overcame Nuffield/ Satya in the final, 21-16, to take the trophy.