HENLEY B came away from JLM Troopers with a narrow 6-4 victory in the Stratford and District Table Tennis Association, but the result could have been very different had the hosts been able to take advantage of any of the three games to go the full distance, report by Peter Florence.
Martin Clayton personified the villagers’ determination by putting aside two-set deficits against both Piotr Penczkowski and Jim Clarke to defeat each in the deciders.
Not to be outdone, Andy Rowland overcame George Clarke in the same manner after losing the first two ends, before going on to record a treble and adding the doubles in partnership with Clayton.
George Clarke notched a brace for Troopers with his father Jim and Penczkowski each earning a point.
After commencing the season with an 11-match unbeaten run, JLM Cavaliers sustained their second successive defeat when they were put to the sword by Colebridge Pasties.
The evening began with a contest between two of the Stratford Association’s most talented young players, who produced an absorbing display which bodes well for the future of the league, with Nathaniel Saunders taking the honours against Joe Cull.
Saunders, Tom Shortley and Mike Credland all delivered perfect performances against tough opposition, thereby ensuring Pasties will top the table after completion of the first round of fixtures.
In the only game to be settled in the fifth set, Steve Cull took an early lead and looked on course to gain some consolation for the Cavaliers, only for Credland to finish strongly.
Second-placed Shottery A also imposed the whitewash when they travelled to Ashorne where Gary Stewart, Stephen Foster and Graham Poole were untroubled.
Yet another maximum was imposed by the Tanworth Taipans’ trio of Mick Welsh, Denis Kynaston and Mike Saunders who entertained Veterans.
Snitterfield trail Shottery A by just one point, but with a match in hand, after a 9-1 win against Henley A.
Clive Irwin and John Price notched trebles, with Alison Stewart adding a brace, although she was unable to get the better of Nigel Payne, who thereby spared the visitors’ blushes.
Mahroof Hussain led the way for Colebridge Bulldogs in their 8-2 defeat of JLM Hussars.
He secured all three of his singles games before claiming the doubles with Dean Hicks.
Hicks and Chris Welsh each contributed two successes, but were not a match for James Glazzard, who earned both Hussars’ points.
It also finished 8-2 when Shottery B played host to their fellow Alderminster tenants Blazing Paddles.
Gareth Hepworth produced a brace as well as the doubles with Tony Remes.
Meanwhile, Tim Fell also enjoyed two successes but he had to work hard against Chris Dickens before winning their fifth game 11-9.
Dickens and Wilf Chan each got on the card for Paddles, who were unable to field a third player.