Burnham & District Table Tennis League - September 2016
The new season is well upon us now and in Division 1 Stow Maries A have launched themselves into this campaign with an impressive run of 4 straight wins only dropping 7 points along the way with Matthew Brown winning 9/9 of his singles matches – this could be a good year for the Maries’ if they can keep Matthew on active duty. In contrast to the A team the Stow Maries B team provide the other bookend to Division 1 as they are 0/3 but having played the 3 top teams at present, so perhaps better fortune lays ahead for Dave Marsh and his merry band. Other early contenders are West Maldon A, who seem to be coping without the services of their loyal but injured captain Glen Laing, with the ever dependable Gary Young also on 100% for his singles to date. Of course no early season report could fail to mention the impressive start of the 3 Mapledene teams including pre-season favourites Mapledene A and their Burnham Globetrotters. Early doors but things may soon change as Fambridge A have yet to start their campaign and all the teams settle down into regular playing formations. The strangest result yet came in the Cold Norton A v Maldon A doubles where Sam Lowman and Duncan Taylor defeated Alex Abbott and Hamish Innes 11-3 10-12 11-0 11-0 – a strange scorecard indeed!
Division 2 is usually the closest division and this rule of thumb appears to be in place this year as the teams are already bunched with only 4 points separating the top 6 teams with numerous matches being drawn. Local bookmakers have Mayland A and West Maldon B as pre-season favourites with Woodham A as a dark horse especially now they have pressganged the ever improving David Gatheral into their ranks. Mayland’s firebrand Ralph Gibson leads the averages at the early stages with 7/8 singles victories – with ladies-in-waiting honours for 3 of the league’s biggest characters, Dave Goody, Nicky Duce & Scott ‘Skippy’ Perry all on an impressive 5/6 wins so far. The surprise package in Division 2 has been the introduction of Woodham’s 14 year old Luca Bailey – perhaps not getting the wins just yet, but some very impressive play that will undoubtedly yield better results as the season progresses – one to watch for sure.
In Division 3 you have to feel for the experienced Maldon G team as they faced possibly the strongest Division 3 side for several years in Dave Razzell, Louis Gunn & Peter Mortensen in the West Maldon D corner. So with that line up, the early signs are a two-way battle with Woodham D – but the Maldon U3A youngsters may yet have a say in matters pewter. Both David and Louis are on 100% wins so far, and joining them is Woodham’s gentle giant Roger Maidment. Just behind lurks West Maldon’s third musketeer Peter Mortensen on 5/6 so far. Results have been much more decisive in this division with a couple of 10-0s already.