The Semi-finals of the Eastern Valley Table Tennis League Team Handicap were held on the 10th February. The format as usual was 9 singles matches of 3 sets each with the handicap not being revealed until the conclusion of the match. The first semi-final was between Cwmbran Colts of Division One and Blaenavon Aces of the Second Division. To reflect the relative abilities of the 2 teams a handicap of 134.5 points was awarded to the Aces. After 6 matches the Colts had clawed back the points difference to 35 points and were on target to gain a narrow win with their number one player Lee Thomas still having a match to play. However, the turning point came in the 7th game with an unexpected win for the Aces Mathew Pearce over Nigel Gore by 2 sets to 1. This result proved the difference between the sides as the Aces won by 8.5 points. Congratulations to the Aces team of Mathew Pearce, Ben Pearce and Ben Allen on reaching the final.
The other Semi-final was an all Division Two match between Blaenavon Bulldogs and Cwmbran Eccentrics. A team handicap of 10.5 points was awarded to the Bulldogs. The match was always going to be a tight affair with the 2 teams evenly matched. Although the teams would not have known at the time, after 5 matches the Eccentrics had managed to claw back the handicap and take a 5 point lead. In that 5th match the Eccentrics' Alan Howse had a very good win against Bethany Brewer to give his side the lead. However, to her credit Brewer in match 6 had a convincing win over Sunam Rai. This result was the turning point and the Bulldogs won by 277.5 points to 254. Congratulations to the Blaenavon Bulldogs team of Jack Freegard, Bethany Brewer and Joseph Hill on reaching the final and a match against their club mates the Blaenavon Aces.
The final will be held on Tuesday 14th April.