KO Cup Final Report - April-18
 

All seven of the Leagues cup finals were played week commencing 23rd April. 5 Knock Out finals at Tollgate TTC on Wednesday 25th and two handicap finals on Thursday 26th at Rowhedge TTC.

The KO cups were played with a new format this season with all league teams entered into a straight knock-out competition at the start of the season. The format seems to have worked well and is set to be maintained next season.

Gt Horkesley A completed the double, winning the Premier League title and with an emphatic 8-1 win over Tollgate B secured the Kiltie Cup. Team regulars Richard Hutchinson, Dan Shelley and Paul Broxton were rarely troubled as they moved to an unassailable 5-0 lead. Wudong Liu came closest to extending the contest when he stretched Dan Shelley to five ends in the fourth match of the night, taking the first set 11-6 and only just losing the second set 9-11. Had he won that that it would have been the first win for Tollgate B since he then took the third set 13-11. Dan Shelley finally sensed the danger from Wudong and took the next two sets 11-4 and 11-6, the match score then standing at 4-0 to Gt Horkesley A. Match 5 was another 5 setter and the pairing of Steve Pennell and Wudong Liu needed a win to stop Gt Horkesley crossing the winning line. They fought hard, going 2-1 up, but Richard Hutchinson and Paul Broxton held their nerve to take the next two ends 11-4, 11-3.

Wudong was the star player for Tollgate, maintaining his good form to take a 5 set win against Paul Broxton, 3-11, 11-3, 11-9, 9-11, 11-8.

In the John Kellett Cup Tollgate E faced Walton B. Walton were the surprise finalists having knocked out newly crowned Division One champions Rowhedge D in the semi-final. Tollgate took the first doubles win of the night and in doing so proved how crucial doubles, there are three played, are in this competition. Olly Fifield and Ethan Lloyd against Daniel Young and Paul Woolnough. Four very close sets. Olly and Ethan took the first two, 11-9, 14-12, Walton struck back to take the third set 12-10. Olly and Ethan established an early lead in the fourth end and never let that slip, recording a 11-6. Walton came back straight away taking the next three singles, Kevin James beating Arran Hutchinson in four, Paul Woolnough beating Olly Fifield also over four ends and finally Daniel Young beating Ethan Lloyd three straight. All three matches were hard fought tight battles.

The important second doubles was next and once again Tollgate prevailed, Arran and Ethan winning over four sets against Kevin and Paul. Walton took the first set comfortably. The next two sets were critical wins for Tollgate, 12-10 and 13-11. Walton so close to winning three straight and had they done so they would have taken a 4-1 lead. But 3-2 was the halfway score. The next three singles saw Tollgate finally get a singes win, Olly beating Kevin, again over four ends. Match score now all square. Daniel then faced Arran, another very close four setter, Daniel coming through 10-12, 11-8, 11-7, 13-11. Walton now just one win away from the title. Ethan ensured the contest would go to the final match by beating Paul 6-11, 11-3, 11-7, 11-9. So, the final match, a doubles. Arran and Olly up against Kevin and Daniel. Doubles match play is an important element of these competitions and Tollgate secured the win through winning the three doubles plus picking up two out of six singles. The final doubles, like all the matches played on the night, was very closely fought, it could have easily gone to five ends but in the end it was three straight, 11-6, 15-13, 13-11.

After week 5 of the division 2 league competition Tollesbury A were the dominant team right through to the end of the season and that proved to be the case in the Giles Bennett-Smith Cup. They faced Lawford B who were never able to halt Tollesburys push towards the division 2 league and cup double. Tollesbury quickly established a 4-0 lead which was paused briefly when Peter Armes and John Colvin overcame the Tollesbury pairing of Steve Scholz and Tom Lewis, a comprehensive 11-6, 11-8, 11-9 win. In the very next match Steve secured the win for Tollesbury, beating Mark Seymour over four sets.

The Noel Underdown Cup for teams in division three saw some fierce close fought matches taking place between Rowhedge H and Pegasus C. The very first doubles set the closeness of matches. Jamie Morgan and Chloe Andrews just losing out in five ends to Doug Green and Alistair Woodcock, 11-4, 11-6, 8-11, 7-11, 8-11. The guile and experience of the Pegasus duo coming back from 2 sets down to give Pegasus an unexpected lead. Kevin Turner dubled the lead with a straight sets win against Jarek Sahaj. Jamie then settled Rowhedge with a well executed 5 set win against Alistair, taking the final two sets, 11-7, 11-8. One of the lonest matches of the night then followed Chloe against Doug. Doug Green has a very unusual style of play and he can easily draw players into playing his way causing them to make more errors than usual. It was a hard fought match going all the way to five sets with Doug winning the vital final set. Full score was 11-8, 11-13, 11-2, 9-11, 11-7.  Jamie came back to steady Rowhedge with another good win against Kevin Turner but in the very next match Doug did his magic once again, this time against Jarek to win the trophy for Pegasus.

As the hall was being cleared at the end of the evening one figure remained seated at the end of the hall. It was Doug, unsure whether he had the energy to walk out having used it all in his matches!

Dedham C put up a tremendous fight in their match with Pegasus G for the John Welham Cup. Pegasus had jumped into a 2-0 lead thanks to wins from Jill Canning and Alan Foley over Jennie Clarke and Chris Jones, followed by Pat Warren beating Denise Thompson over five sets. 11-5, 11-9, 5-11, 4-11, 11-4. Dedham hit back with Chris beating Jill over 4 ends. Alan pushed Pegasus ahead again with win against Jennie, no pushover with the match going to five sets, Jennie fighting back from 2 sets down only to lose the final set 11-6.  Dedham then levelled the contest at 3-3 taking first the doubles 3 straight, Chris and Denise against Pat and Alan, then Denise was straight back to the table to record a win against Jill. 11-5, 11-13, 11-5, 11-5. Pat placed Pegasus in the lead once again with a 4 set win against Jennie, 6-11, 13-11, 11-9, 11-5 only for Chris to level again, beating Alan 11-5, 12-10, 11-3. So it came down a final sudden death doubles to confirm who would win. Jill and Pat against Denise and Jennie. Pat and Jill staying calm, maybe, to record a three set win 11-8, 12-10, 11-5.

Author: via Colchester Table Tennis League
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