Table tennis derby ends all square

Star Paving Services North Norfolk Table Tennis LeagueTHE closest match of the week came in the Seaflames derby in the first division between Dolphins Terry Copland, Andrew Tuddenham and Steve Hudson and Sharks Keith Register, Peter Betts and Phil Baker.

Star Paving Services North Norfolk Table Tennis League

THE closest match of the week came in the Seaflames derby in the first division between Dolphins Terry Copland, Andrew Tuddenham and Steve Hudson and Sharks Keith Register, Peter Betts and Phil Baker.

Register led 9-3 and then 7-4 in the first two sets of the opener, but it was Copland who won 14-12, 11-8, 8-11, 11-8. Betts made a wise decision not to get into a chopping game with Tuddenham as his loops and smashes proved too strong for the Dolphin as he levelled in straight. Register, however, was drawn into a long chopping game with Tuddenham, but with Baker defeating Hudson, two four-set encounters meant the match was tied at 2-2.

Baker's brave smashes were the slim difference as he defeated Copland 6-11, 11-8, 11-9, 9-11, 14-12 and Betts put Sharks 4-2 ahead with a win in three against Hudson.

Another nail-biter followed with Baker having his best chance to win in the fourth which he led 9-5, but Tuddenham dug in for an 11-8, 9-11, 13-15, 11-9, 11-7 victory. And with Hudson winning a fast and furious contest in four over Register the match was again drawn at 4-4.

Most Read

Betts continued his excellent form to defeat Copland 12-10, 11-6, 11-7, but Copland and Hudson won the doubles over Betts and Baker in four to end the night as a draw.

At North Walsham, Cobras James Baldock-Yaxley, Alex Spragg and Adam Brown hosted Outlaws Colin Humphries, Jamie Craig and John Hancock (Jnr). Hancock's awkward serves and dominant spin saw him to a maximum without dropping a set and on to his 98th consecutive North Norfolk singles win.

Two wins went the hosts' way, both in four, as Baldock-Yaxley defeated Craig and Spragg picked his shots really well, especially on the forehand, to beat Humphries. A four-set doubles win concluded an 8-2 victory for Outlaws.

Meanwhile, the visiting Specials trio of John Paul, Ray Howe and Hugh Rout whitewashed Seals Mike Toye, Ray Amo and John Barron 10-0. Barron did best for the hosts taking a set from Paul and Rout and going the distance with Howe.

Backhanders Teucer Wilson, Chris Marshall and Murray Shanahan also took maximum points in the second division as they whitewashed Aces Clive Smith, Eric Dolden and Geoff Long.

There were three five-setters however as Marshall went the distance with Smith and Long and Smith was also unlucky against Shanahan. The match between Deltas John Vaughan, Tom Baldock-Yaxley and Jack Morton and Barracudas Derek Philpott, Rex Parfitt and Matt Hudson at Antingham featured several competitive points played with style, fine shot-making plus some fights with a Christmas tree outstaying its welcome.

Philpott won a tremendous contest with Morton 6-11, 11-8, 12-10, 8-11, 16-14 and Hudson took a set from Vaughan, but the remaining singles went to Delta in straight and a four-set doubles win saw them continue their promotion charge with a 9-1 victory.

Elsewhere, Goblins Simeon Care and Peter and Rosie Ward hosted Echoes Phil Mole and Andy and David Beane. Peter Ward took Goblins' only point against David Beane, but the Echo took a brace including a 14-12, 11-7, 7-11, 11-8 win against Care. Maximums from Mole and Andy Beane saw the Echoes to a 9-1 match win.

At Hunworth, Poachers Alan Rutledge, Andy Wood and Jon Cheyette hosted Crosscourters Whil De Neve, Anne Armitage and the returning Neil White. Sterling play from Armitage saw her defeat Rutledge and also take a set from Cheyette. De Neve beat Cheyette in straight but couldn't get past the remarkable defence of Woods whose maximum in straight sets helped Poachers win the match 8-2.

Players of the Week: The players of the week are Peter Betts (excellent form), John Hancock Jnr (power, speed and control), Chris Marshall (winning two vital contests that may prove crucial later in the season), Tom Baldock-Yaxley (classy forehands and serves), Peter Ward (played through the pain) and Neil White (good comeback after long lay-off).

Full report on website