ST CHAD’S are the new table tennis leaders of Division One following their 10-0 victory over bottom-placed Redby CA A.
The Saints dropped only four games during the match – two of which were in a 3-2 win by Barry Cuthbertson over Redby’s Amanda Paxton.
This was a close encounter with some excellent counter-hitting by both players. Paxton did well to take the set into the fifth and deciding end after winning the fourth 11-8.
However, Cuthbertson rallied in the fifth to take the set 11-6.
Redby’s Frank Booth and Malcolm Deneven have vast experience between them and although they failed to register a set on the night they should draw some comfort for their spirit and endeavour which saw them lose by the smallest of margins – most notably Deneven’s loss to Cuthbertson 21-19, 11-8, 12-10 and Booth’s narrow defeat to Saints’ No. 1 player Keith Weatherby 11-9 in all three sets.
Weatherby, Jimmy Scope and Cuthbertson were all undefeated for the Saints.
Thompson Insurance A were back in action this week but were rocked by the late withdrawal of Dave Blackburne, forcing them to play the match against their B team with only two men – Chris Blake and Marc Cotton (who was making his first appearance of the season).
Cotton played exceptionally well and was awarded man-of-the-match, winning all of his three sets and combining with Blake (3) to win the only doubles set to ensure a 7-3 and maximum four-point victory.
The win moves them into second place, three points behind St Chad’s with three matches in hand.
Lynn Herrington, Maurice Cheek and Eddie Coxon all played really well for the B team and can count themselves unlucky not to register a set on the night.
In Division Two, leaders Sacriston St Bede’s A promotion hopes were seriously dented following the club derby match against their B side.
Despite being a player short, the B side shocked their title-chasing A team consisting of Paul Dale, Kevin Smith and Jon Mawson.
Ian McAllister and Duncan Fraser were both unbeaten for the B side, recording memorable hat-tricks before combining to win the only doubles set and win the match 7-3.
Mortimer CA moved within three points of leaders Sacriston A following their powerful 7-3 victory over promotion rivals Silksworth IM B.
Mortimer’s Dave Cutler was man-of-the-match after winning his three sets and combining with Matty Hampton to win the doubles.
Ian Moore chipped in with two sets but narrowly lost out to Silksworth’s Alan Bickle 11-5 in the fourth. With Hampton picking up the final set, Mortimer secured four points for their 7-3 win to keep their promotion hopes alive.
Redby CA beat Redby CA B 7-3 despite fielding only two players. Rob Kerr and Dave Barber were both undefeated and combined to win the doubles.
The final score was a bit harsh on the B side consisting of Howard Forster, Alan Girdwood and Ian Wilson, who saw four of the seven sets played being decided in the fourth or fifth end – all of which went in favour of their opponents.
It was an excellent week for the St John’s club with the A, B and C sides all enjoying victories.
St John’s B remain top following their 10-0 win over Redby CA C. Dave Pringle, Michael Cameron and Tony Watson were all undefeated, and two more wins out of the final six league fixtures should help guarantee promotion to Division 2.
St John’s A remain in second place after a hard-fought 7-3 victory over St Gabriel’s C.
At the midway point, St Gabriel’s led the match 3-2 only to see St John’s storm back to win the final five sets.
Eszter Soos (St John’s) beat Ron Douglass 12-10 in the fifth, St John’s Craig Burton then beat Alan Ray 11-5 in the fifth before No. 1 player Estvan Soos (St John’s) beat Syd Gooding 12-10, 13-11, 11-7.
The final score was a little harsh on St Gabriel’s, whose performance deserved at least a point for their efforts.
St John’s C recorded only their third victory of the season with a fine 9-1 win over rivals Lanchester CC.
John Cook recorded the only set for Lanchester with a fine win over Jacob Helm.
There were some very tight matches throughout the match – most notably the sets between Sean Gleghorn (St John’s) and John Cook, and Jacob Helm (St John’s) and Robert Cook, which the Saints won in the fifth set 11-7 and 11-8 respectively.
Gleghorn and Jake Hannah played really well for the Saints to finish the night undefeated and also combined to win the only doubles set. They were well supported by Helm, who won two of his three sets.
Lanchester’s Guthrie played well but was unfortunate not to pick up a set on the night.
Results: Division One: St Chad’s 10 Redby CA A 0, Thompson Ins A 7 Thompson Ins B 3.
Division Two: Redby CA B 3 Redby CA A 7, Sacriston St Bede’s A 3 Sacriston St Bede’s B 7, Silksworth IM B 3 Mortimer CA 7.
Division Three: Redby CA C 0 St Johns B 10, St Gabriel’s C 10 Redby CA C 0, St John’s A 7 St Gabriel’s C 3, St. John’s C 9 Lanchester CC 1.