The only two unbeaten records in the Braintree Table Tennis League went head to head when division three’s top two Felsted RBL C and Black Notley E faced each other.
And it was Felsted whose defeats column remained untarnished after a 6-4 victory.
The two teams had drawn the first time they met but as Notley’s resources have crumbled in recent weeks, Felsted have been racking up comfortable victories.
Felsted had dropped only six sets in their previous five matches while Notley had been limping on with an ever increasing number of reserves since Helen Barnett was forced out of action.
New signing Steve Rowe became the 11th player to represent the E team this season, a stark contrast to their opponents, who had fielded the same three players in 12 consecutive matches.
And those three, Matthew Laws, Arthur Geen and Mike Pitt, duly did their job on this occasion by winning two sets each.
Hannah Pitt remained above it all by winning her three singles comfortably and partnering Mike Smith to a doubles win.
Felsted moved further ahead with a 9-1 win over Rayne H and an 8-2 win in their next match against Netts D.
Netts’ Kierlan Richards won twice for the junior team, including a creditable victory over Laws, whose defeat the previous week by Hannah Pitt had been his first in five matches.
Notley E added two 6-4 wins, against Netts D and Notley I. Max Plumridge picked up two good wins for Netts D.
Rayne G welcomed back two players who had been ruled out with injuries since September and both quickly found their form.
Peter Taylor took two singles in his team’s 7-3 win over Notley I – he lost to Jamie Brooks – while Roger Hasler’s lay-off appears to have given him a new impetus. In the match against their own I team, he beat Ian Rubens, who beat him two out of three times last season, and Barry Mouser, who won all three of their 2014-15 encounters.
Rayne G won the match 8-2.
Notley G overcame Rayne I 6-4 while Notley F beat their own H team 8-2.
When the G and F teams met, it was the G team who came out on top 6-4, Paul Martin picking up all three singles for the G team.
Warren Baines, who announced his retirement at the end of last season, made a surprise return in Notley H’s match against Rayne H.
He joined his father Steve and brother Declan and won his three singles to help his side to a 7-3 win.