Table tennis in focus

Star Paving Services North Norfolk Table Tennis LeagueTHE Handicap Cups got underway this week with a preliminary round in the doubles event as Specials Jonathan Care (E), Hugh Rout (D) and Ray Howe (E) hosted Sharks Keith Register (F), Peter Betts (C) and Phil Baker (C).

Star Paving Services North Norfolk Table Tennis League

THE Handicap Cups got under way with a preliminary round in the doubles event as Specials Jonathan Care (E), Hugh Rout (D) and Ray Howe (E) hosted Sharks Keith Register (F), Peter Betts (C) and Phil Baker (C).

Specials easily won the opener. Betts and Baker and Rout and Howe then split sets before Sharks surged ahead in the decider. However, they started to make mistakes to go from 20-18 upto lose on the golden sudden-death point at 20-20.

Specials collapsed in the third battle, but in the fourth the pairing of Rout and Howe again came from behind to take the deciding set, against Register and Baker.

Betts went on the attack at 16-20 down as Register and Betts defeated Care and Howe 21-20, 21-19 as Specials' lead was cut to 3-2 in the best of nine tie. However, the sixth battle was an easy home win.

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Rout and Howe won the golden point in the third against Register and Betts to wrap up a 5-2 win.

Specials will host Delta in the first round proper in which Barracudas Rod Hill (N), Derek Philpott (G) and Rex Parfitt (O) hosted Beta's Ivan Hewitt (I), Jay Gardner (H) and Chris Johnson (G).

Hill and Parfitt's 11-point start proved too much in the opener, but Gardner and Johnson levelled the contest, coming from 18-20 down in the second to defeat Philpott and Parfitt (+8) 16-21,

21-20, 21-18. Hewitt and Gardner won the first set against Hill and Philpott (+4) 21-18, but lost the second 21-4. The decider was tense at 19-19 - Barracudas took the next point, but Beta the next two to open up a 2-1 lead. Another three-setter saw Philpott and Parfitt (+6) level proceedings, before a serve-dominated contest saw Hill and Parfitt (+11) defeat Hewitt and Johnson 21-9, 19-21, 21-11.

The next two battles gave Barracudas a six-point start in both, and both also went to a deciding set. The results were split, Hewitt and Gardner winning the latter to keep Beta in the contest. However Hill and Philpott (+4) wrapped up the match with a rare straight sets defeat of Hewitt and Johnson.

Barracuda's close 5-3 win will see them host the winners of that Specials v Delta clash in the quarter-finals.

In the second division Delta were hoping that Echoe's Phil Mole and David and Andy Beane took as many points as possible from Backhander's Teucer Wilson, Rod Goffin and Murray Shanahan, which may prove pivotal in a fascinating promotion battle.

Mole took a brace, including a win from two down against Shanahan. David Beane nearly recovered from two down, losing in five to Rod Goffin.

In turn Goffin lost in five to Andy Beane - both players taking braces on the night. Two from Wilson, one from Shanahan and a five-set doubles victory sealed a 6-4 match win for Backhanders.

Outlaws' Jamie Craig, John Hancock (Jnr) and Colin Humphries hosted Seals in the first division. A five-set doubles was the best game of the night as Outlaws won 10-0.

Players of the week are John Hancock (Jnr), Hugh Rout, Rod Hill and Rod Goffin.


Handicap Doubles Cup Preliminary Round: Specials 5, Sharks 2.

Handicap Doubles Cup First Round: Barracudas 5, Beta 3.

First Division: Outlaws 10,

Seals 0.

Second Division: Echoes 4, Backhanders 6.