Westfield A failed to win for the first time this season as they were held to an entertaining 5-5 draw by Higham in the Premier Division of the Kettering and District Table Tennis League.
Kevin Bird was the only unbeaten player on show, dropping just one end to Richard Elliott on his way to an impressive maximum.
Elliott and Richard Bashford both claimed wins over Roumen Stefanov and Brian Wooding for the hosts to make it 5-4 to Westfield going into the deciding doubles.
When Bird and Wooding led 2-0 it looked like nine from nine for the reigning champions, but back stormed Higham to win 11-4, 11-6, 13-11 and share the points.
Corby Smash A and Burton Baptist A also drew 5-5 but Smash will be rueing missed chances having led 5-2.
A treble from Tony West and wins for brothers Sam and Adam Wilson over Gerry Crasto put the hosts in front.
But Martin Hall came from 2-0 down to beat Adam and Alex Aston edged past Sam in five to reduce the deficit.
And Baptist sealed the comeback when Aston and Hall joined forces to win the doubles.
Corby Lyveden Fields edged past clubmates Rothbury 6-4.
Aiden Smith and Guy Sparrow both claimed braces for Rothbury’s four in contrasting circumstances.
Smith hammered Henry Arthur but fell in five to Chris Haynes, while Sparrow beat Haynes in five but fell to Arthur in four.
Kyle Murie picked up a single win over Nigel Hunt as Haynes and Arthur teamed up to seal Lyveden Fields’ win.
Kettering Town moved up to second in the league as they thumped two-man Westfield C 10-0.
It was always going to be a tough task for Matt Rushton and Steve Hobbs and so it proved as the trio of John Fuller, Shandor Czuczor and Nigel Metcalfe eased through.
Westfield drop to ninth in the table after the first round of fixtures.
Results: Higham 5 (Elliott 2, Bashford 2, Elliott/Bashford) Westfield A 5 (K Bird 3, Stefanov, Wooding), Corby Smash A 5 (West 3, S Wilson, A Wilson) Burton Baptist A 5 (Aston 2, Hall 2, Aston/Hall), Corby Lyveden Fields 6 (Arthur 2, Haynes 2, Murie, Arthur/Haynes) Corby Rothbury 4 (Smith 2, Sparrow 2), Westfield C 0 Kettering Town 10 (Fuller 3, Metcalfe 3, Czuczor 3, Fuller/Metcalfe)
Team of the week: Higham
Player of the week: Kevin Bird
With their ninth win in eleven matches Harborough A remain at the top of the table in Division One by five points from Harborough B, but Thrapston Falcons will have been happy to restrict their margin of victory to only 6-4.
At half way Falcons led 3-2 after an in form Ian Baldock had accounted for Barry Thompson and Kevin Shield.
Nigel Payne also beat Shield but Nathan Thompson won all three of his sets 3-1 despite losing game two to all three of Alan Tyler, Payne and Baldock.
Barry had 3-0 wins over Tyler and Payne as did Shield against Tyler.
Baldock and Payne then took the doubles to end the Thompsons’ 100 per cent doubles record.
In what could be considered as a battle for second place, Rothborough Arrows were at a disadvantage being down to two players and Harborough B managed to double the initial 3-0 lead to win 8-2.
Mike Brocklebank accounted for both Julian Marlow and Martin Watts and Liam Burnham and Steve Crook both beat Watts but not Marlow who scored Arrows two points.
As a result Harborough B increased their two point lead over Arrows to eight points in second place.
Fourth placed Westfield D are still in with an outside chance of promotion following a 7-3 victory over seventh placed Thrapston Kites.
Paul Malpass and Chris Alder were the main contributors, Malpass with a treble and Alder with a brace just losing to Peter Briggs before the two combined to easily win the doubles.
Nitin Patel had an off night for him with just one win over Stewart Williams who also had an off night with a blank.
The two Burton Baptist teams played each other for the second time and for the second time they couldn't be separated as they drew 5-5 again.
As these two teams are quite well matched it's no big surprise that nobody scored a treble in either match but two players on each side scored a brace this time, Steve Smith and Nash Hooda for the B team and Derek Muggleton and Chris Agg for the C team while Gerry Crasto beat a winless Kelvin Marshall who has had a difficult first half of the season.
Burton C are bottom of the table and eight points below Thrapston Kites, nine points below Burton B and 10 points below Thrapston Falcons.
But having played the tougher matches on paper first they will fancy their chances of overtaking any or all of them so the relegation battle for bottom place is still wide open.
Results: Thrapston Falcons 4 (Baldock 2, Payne, Baldock/Payne) Harborough A 6 (N Thompson 3, B Thompson 2, Shield), Rothborough Arrows 2 (Marlow 2) Harborough B 8 (Brocklebank 3, Burnham 2, Crook 2, Burnham/Brocklebank), Westfield D 7 (Malpass 3, Alder 2, Patel, Malpass/Alder) Thrapston Kites 3 (Briggs 2, Judd), Burton Baptist B 5 (Smith 2, Hooda 2, Crasto) Burton Baptist C 5 (Muggleton 2, Agg 2, Agg/Muggleton)
Team of the week: Harborough B
Player of the week: Ian Baldock
Lakeview joined Smash B at the top of the table in Division Two with a repeat of their 7-3 victory over Team Jim.
All players – Rob Warrander, Adam Bendyk and Stephen Woolston – got a brace and added the doubles.
Having taken a 4-0 lead they never really let it slip, but did need to win the last two games to ensure the win.
This last game was one of three that Jacob Tattersall took the full distance and the only one he lost.
His impressive night included defeats of Stephen Woolston , 21 places ahead of him, and 14-12 in the last end against Rob Warrander, 28 places ahead of him, and the first time he has outscored team mate Harry Lade.
Buccaneers reversed the 4-6 result against Comets and gained ground on them in the league.
There was quite a change from the earlier match as Luke Saywood gained a hat-trick – although needing 14 ends to do it – but Lauren Ainsworth, who was playing her first game since week six, couldn’t maintain her impressive season.
Ivor Jones beat David Steele and Lee Mordecai, who in turn defeated Ainsworth, but Comets, in the form of Mordecai and Gareth Lewis got the doubles.
This sealed a good night for Lewis after another good double.
Neil Stone was the only one to upset the odds when Halesowen visited Harborough as the Church Langton team repeated their previous score and went back into third in the table.
Otherwise Vaughan Allington got his second hat-trick and Mark Pearson’s first match at this level this year saw him get a treble too.
Phil Dixon got a brace which included a revenge win over John Hunt, but Dixon played in all four games to go the distance, and the doubles saw him and Allington come back from two ends down to beat Stone and Ken Murie.
Results: Baptist Team Jim 3 (Tattersall 2, H Lade) Corby Lakeview 7 (Bendyk 2, Warrander 2, Woolston 2, Bendyk/Woolston), Harborough C 9 (Allington 3, Pearson 3, Dixon 2, Allington/Dixon) Corby Halesowen 1 (Stone), Rothborough Comets 4 (Lewis 2, Mordecai, Lewis/Mordecai) Rothborough Buccaneers 6 (Saywood 3, Jones 2, Ainsworth)
Player of the week: Jacob Tattersall
Team of the week: Rothborough Buccaneers
Corby Smash C continued in their winning ways in Division Three with a 10-0 whitewash over Westfield E.
Westfield struggled to get anything going as Smash C were relentless and only a few games went past three ends.
Smash C sit top of the league with a six point lead over Harborough E.
Harborough E took on Rothborough Dakotas in a top of the table clash which would help keep both teams in title contention.
Harborough E went 5-1 up early on but Dakotas slimmed the lead and the match ended 6-4 to Harborough.
Mark Pearson scored another impressive hat trick with wins over Tony Yeomans, Sally Taylor and most impressively Pete Rowbotham.
Results: Corby Smash C 10 (L Hillery 3, T Hillery 3, P Hillery 3, T Hillery/P Hillery) Westfield E 0, Harborough E 6 (Pearson 3, Radford 2, Palfrey) Rothborough Dakotas 4 (Rowbotham, Yeomans, Rowbotham/Yeomans)
Player of the week: Mark Pearson
Team of the week: Corby Smash C