It looks like the title in Division One of the Kendal and District Table Tennis League will go to the wire as three teams battle it out for the coveted number one spot.
Ibis currently lead the division with a six point advantage over second place Burton A, having played one game fewer than their rivals. Third placed Natland A who led the division for so long now lie in third place, nine points behind Ibis but have the all-important game in hand.
Crook A moved a crucial step closer to survival after whitewashing rock bottom Kirkby Stephen A 10-0. John Howarth, Phil Swift and Mike Taylor won their three matches with ease. The result has moved Crook five points clear of the relegation zone, holding a game in hand over nearest rivals Natland B.
Dallam A moved seven points clear of the drop zone courtesy of a 5-5 draw with Dalton CC B. Tony Whitehouse and Keith Mallinson forged a 2-1 lead in Dalton’s favour thanks to their wins against James Neal and John Fitzgerald respectively. Paul Gosling and Neal fought back for the Milnthorpe side, recording 4-11, 9-11, 11-8, 12-10, 11-7 and 11-3, 11-7, 11-6 victories against Paul Croft to level at 2-2. Whitehouse and Mallinson restored the Dalton lead at 4-2 after their three and four set triumphs against Fitzgerald and Gosling respectively. Dallam would not capitulate and drew level at 4-4 following Fitzgerald’s 12-10 deciding set victory against Croft, while Neal achieved his second win of the evening with a 7-11, 11-3, 11-5, 13-11 win against Mallinson. Whitehouse beat Gosling 11-5, 11-9, 11-8, but Dallam held on for a 5-5 draw when Gosling and Neal teamed up in the doubles to beat Whitehouse and Mallinson 11-7, 11-9, 7-11, 8-11, 11-5.
Division Three leaders Dallam D completed their sixteenth win of the season after a 26-10 derby success against Dallam E. Stephen Troughton and Bradley Varey remained unbeaten for the D team, however they could consider themselves fortunate to come through their five set matches with Anna Parkinson who narrowly lost out 11-9 and 12-10 in the deciding set against the two players. Dallam E deservedly got themselves on the score-sheet when Nina Duxbury and Matthew Thomas beat Bruce Carnaffin in four sets. The result leaves Dallam with a huge one hundred and eleven point advantage at the table summit, meaning they are all but assured of the title.
Dent A lie in second place following a 21-12 success against strugglers Natland E. Steve Hawley and Ben Smith gained a hat-trick of victories which led Dent to their eleventh triumph of the season.
In other local table tennis, Phil Goymer beat Bernard Pickthall in the Crook Veterans’ Tournament on Sunday. The match was tightly fought, with Goymer edging victory 11-9 in a tense fifth set. Tony March won the Plate final 11-7 in the fourth set against Wirral’s Martin Sellars.