Race for table tennis honours

Star Paving Services North Norfolk Table Tennis LeagueThe league has entered the home straight. The first division saw Alpha's team of Dennis Elliott, Dave Johns and Mary Sawyer host Dolphins' Steve Nicholls, Scott Wallace and Steve Hudson.

Star Paving Services North Norfolk Table Tennis League

The league has entered the home straight. The first division saw Alpha's team of Dennis Elliott, Dave Johns and Mary Sawyer host Dolphins' Steve Nicholls, Scott Wallace and Steve Hudson. Wallace defeated Johns 11-6, 6-11, 11-9, 5-11, 11-2 before Nicholls came back from two down also against Johns, winning 9-11, 10-12, 15-13, 11-6, 12-10.

Those were the only two points the Dolphins were to take - the Alphas won all the remaining games, in straight sets in all but two contests, with Elliott and Sawyer winning in four against Hudson and Wallace respectively. Elliott and Johns combined for an 11-4, 15-13, 11-8 win over Wallace and Hudson in the concluding doubles as Alpha won 8-2.

At Trunch and in the second division, the Sharks trio of Nigel Hayward-Surry, Keith Register and Phil Baker hosted the Beta quartet of Chris Johnson, Simon Halliday, Matt Robinson and Philip Stone. Johnson nearly came back from 9-2 down in the first set of the opener before Hayward-Surry clinched it 11-9 and then used good tactical play to win in straight.

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Halliday came back from 5-1 to take the first from Register 11-7 but squandered two set-points at 10-8 in the second. Register had two opportunities, but the set went to Halliday 15-13 on his fourth attempt.

Register took the next two sets 11-8, 11-9 to force a decider which he then led 4-0. However, Halliday took the fifth 11-9 to win.

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Baker took the last four points from 10-8 in the first and also won three points from 9-7 in the third and saved a set-point during his 12-10, 11-4, 14-12 win over Robinson. Good serving at key times then helped Register to a win in four over Johnson.

Robinson seemed to be giving Hayward-Surry a master-class during two sets of their encounter, but the experience of the Shark saw him to a 12-10, 4-11, 4-11, 11-9, 11-7 win. A 7-0 start in the second helped Baker defeat Halliday in straight, while a 5-0 lead in the decider was crucial to Robinson's 6-11, 11-3, 12-10, 5-11, 11-7 win over Register.

Baker won over Johnson in straight, before Hayward-Surry took the first from Halliday. The Beta led the second 5-0, but after losing the next six points the match slipped away from him very quickly. The doubles between Baker and Register and Johnson and Stone saw the Sharks won in four sets to conclude their 8-2 match win.

A reversed fixture also at Trunch saw Seal's Chris Marshall, John Barron and Ron Millett host the Delta line-up of Stan Baldock, Tom Baldock-Yaxley and John Vaughan. Barron won a narrow tussle over Baldock-Yaxley 7-11, 11-9, 11-5, 6-11, 13-11 before running out of steam against Vaughan during his 11-6, 6-11, 14-16, 11-2, 11-3 defeat.

Barron was lucky to win in three over Baldock -- winning the last four points from 8-10 in the third, while good use of spin in the last two sets saw Millett to an 8-11, 13-11, 11-6, 11-5 win over Baldock-Yaxley.

The doubles proved a fitting finale with Vaughan and Baldock combining well, but Barron and Millett narrowly winning 11-3, 13-15, 11-6, 11-13, 12-10. Vaughan took a maximum for Delta, but Seals won the night 7-3. In the league, Seals are looking good for third place. Delta trail Beta by five points despite winning two more matches.

Players of the week: Matt Robinson and Tom Baldock-Yaxley.

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