Westfield A failed to win for the first time this season in the Premier Division of the Kettering and District Table Tennis League after being held to a 5-5 draw by title rivals Kettering Town.
In a classic where the momentum swung both ways Westfield landed the first blow as Steve Silk came from 2-1 down to beat Nigel Metcalfe 11-8 at the death.
Town then took a 3-2 lead as defender John Fuller beat Silk in another five-ender 12-10, before Metcalfe opened his account with a fine 3-1 win over Roumen Stefanov.
Westfield reeled off three games in a row to lead 5-3, Stefanov’s 13-11 deciding game win over Fuller the highlight.
But Metcalfe beat Brian Wooding before Town added the doubles to snatch a draw.
Higham currently sit one point clear of the pack at the top after a 7-3 win over Corby Rothbury.
Andy Trott scored a treble, assisted by a brace from Richard Bashford and a single win for Mark Nannery over Henry Arthur.
For Rothbury, Kyle Murie and Aiden Smith both beat Nannery with Murie also coming from 2-0 down to edge out Bashford.
Westfield B sit second after they drew 5-5 at Corby Lyveden Fields.
Dan Smalley picked up another maximum without dropping an end, with Matt Horrocks chipping in with a win over Aaron Moore.
Scott Dixon played up from Division One and despite failing to win, pushed both Moore and Chris Haynes to four ends.
Harborough B scored their first point in five matches as they went down 9-1 at home to Westfield C.
Their night got off to the perfect start as Liam Burnham beat Sam Wildman in straight games.
But, in a match played out of order, the visitors won the next nine to pick up a crucial win.
On an adjacent table two-man Harborough A picked up a big draw after taking advantage of a weakened Corby Smash A.
Smash were without regular Adam Wilson and Sam Wilson’s wins over Barry and Natham Thompson, coupled with the three forfeited games in their favour, made up their five.
The Thompsons both beat Peter Hillery and Andy Logan, playing up, and added the doubles.
Results: Kettering Town 5 (Fuller 2, Metcalfe 2, Fuller/Metcalfe) Westfield A 5 (Silk 2, Stefanov 2, Wooding), Higham 7 (Trott 3, Bashford 2, Nannery, Trott/Bashford) Corby Rothbury 3 (Murie 2, Smith), Corby Lyveden Fields 5 (Haynes 2, Murie 2, Moore) Westfield B 5 (Smalley 3, Horrocks, Smalley/Horrocks), Harborough B 1 (Burnham) Westfield C 9 (Hobbs 3, Rushton 3, Wildman 2, Hobbs/Rushton), Harborough A 5 (B Thompson 2, N Thompson 2, Thompson/Thompson) Corby Smash A 5 (Wilson 3, Hillery, Logan)
Player of the week: Kyle Murie
Team of the week: Higham
When the top two in Division One met at Islip the team in second triumphed with Burton A beating Thrapston 8-2.
The two highest ranked players, Dariusz Gulbicki and Dave Needham, were largely untroubled sharing seven victories and have only lost once each so far.
Harry Lade contributed the eighth with a win over Steve West, but he let a two-end lead slip against Chris Warliker and Pete Briggs in the only two games that went the distance.
However Rothborough Arrows leapfrogged them both to go to the summit with a whitewash of Corby Halesowen, which was harsh as the Corby team took their higher placed opponents to some very close ends.
Keith McLaren lost two ends 15-17 and 14-16 in three straight end defeats but Ken Knott took ends off everyone and was particularly unlucky in a five end defeat by Martin Watts, 11-13 at the death, with a very prolonged point at 8-8 when neither player wanted to concede the upper hand.
It’s the first time this season that Knott has had a blank night.
Martin Watts however has got five hat-tricks in seven outings for Arrows and Helen Watts four from six.
When last week’s postponed match between Arrows and Burton A is played on December 20 it is likely it will decide the Christmas number one.
Again Rothborough Buccaneers were heavily defeated 9-1, and again they fought hard.
There were no five end games but all their players got ends and Pete Rowbotham, playing up, was unlucky to lose in four to Jacob Tattersall.
The only point for Buccaneers came when Ivor Jones beat Chris Agg in four very close ends.
Otherwise Agg got his best return of his late-starting season and Tattersall and Derek Muggleton won all four of their games – Tattersall’s fourth maximum and Muggleton’s second.
It takes Burton B to fourth, four points behind top.
Smash B took the short journey to Smash C and showed no mercy to their hosts.
The 10-0 scoreline again was misleading as only three games were over in three, but only the first game - when Mike Burrows was twice ahead against Lewis Hillery only to lose - went to five.
It takes Smash B level at the top with Arrows but having played two games more, and is the first time the Hillery brothers have all got hat-tricks.
Corby Lakeview also upset the table with a 6-4 defeat of Westfield D in a match where no one got a treble, but everyone gained at least one point.
Nigel Hunt had to concede his final game due to illness but must have special mention as he beat the higher-ranked David George in five in his first match before succumbing in three close ones to Paul Malpass.
George then went on to beat otherwise unbeaten Stephen Woolston and Adam Bendyk in straight ends.
Woolston had a long night as he came from behind to win in five in his other three games.
Results: Burton Baptist B 9 (Muggleton 3, Tattersall 3, Agg 2, Muggleton/Tattersall) Rothborough Buccaneers 1 (Jones), Corby Lakeview 6 (Bendyk 2, Woolston 2, Hunt, Bendyk/Woolston) Westfield D 4 (George 2, Brudenall, Malpass), Corby Smash C 0 Corby Smash B 10 (L Hillery 3, P Hillery 3, T Hillery 3, L Hillery/T Hillery), Rothborough Arrows 10 (Marlow 3, H Watts 3, M Watts 3, Watts/Watts) Corby Halesowen 0, Thrapston 2 (Briggs, Warliker) Burton Baptist A 8 (Gulbicki 3, Needham 3, Lade, Gulbicki/Needham)
Player of the week: Nigel Hunt
Team of the week: Burton Baptist A
Harborough D briefly took top spot in Division Two with an emphatic win over Westfield E.
Things were looking ominous when Westfield lost the first three games in straight sets, however Evie Elliott took a rare John McGowan scalp then Sidney Wright beat Ron Palfrey.
This is was as good as it got for the all-lady team as Mark Pearson only lost one end in his treble and Palfrey and McGowan cleaned up the rest including the doubles.
Harborough still remain unbeaten in the doubles.
Corby Smash’s D and E team faced off in a local derby.
With Piotr Knitter not playing Chris Winter would have fancied a good win against his opposite number but this proved not to be the case.
Although Winter picked up a good treble his team couldn’t make any further headway with only James Lock winning a solitary game.
Lana Orbell added a couple more wins to her season tally along with Tom Reygan, the pair then taking the doubles putting the E team over the wining line.
Burton Baptist C, with unbeaten Kelvin Marshall, managed to keep the score respectable against Rothborough Dakotas despite fielding two relatively inexperienced players.
Dakotas couldn’t stop another Marshall treble with David Steele, Tony Yeomans and Cathy Fleming all taking braces.
Marshall teamed up with the youngest player in the league Samuel Tattersall to take a close five-end doubles.
Rothborough Comets returned to the top of the league with a 10-0 thrashing over Corby Chesham.
Chesham’s Nathan Dixon and Nick Preston-Jones, who have picked up some good results lately, found Comets to be ruthless, Comets not dropping an end.
Corby Lincoln had a close match with Old Village in another being decided on a doubles.
Star man this week for Lincoln was Charlie Frost who had a superb win against the tough Richard Bryant.
Old, without Beth Tyler this week, had to rely on the elder Alan Tyler who in only losing one end to Callum Donaldson then teamed up with Bryant to secure the doubles and the points.
Corby Harrogate, featuring another debutant Ethan Hunt, ran Burton Baptist D close.
Stewart Abraham had a fine treble only losing one end to Jim Chatburn.
Stewart combined with Mia Solomon to take the doubles which was all they could muster on the night.
David Marks, Mark Waterfield and Chatburn all won a couple for an evenly matched team effort.
Results: Westfield E 2 (Wright, Elliott) Harborough D 8 (McGowan 2, Pearson 3, Palfrey 2 McGowan/Palfrey), Corby Smash D 4, (Winter 3, Lock) Corby Smash E 6 (Wilson 2, Orbell 2, Reygan, Orbell/Reygan), Burton Baptist C 4 (Marshall 3, Marshall/Tattersall) Rothborough Dakotas 6 (Steele 2,Yeomans 2, Fleming 2), Rothborough Comets 10 (Mordecai 3, Lewis 3, Harrison 3, Lewis/Mordecai) Corby Chesham 0, Corby Lincoln 4 (Frost 2, Donaldson, Woolston) Old Village 6 (Tyler 3, Bryant 2, Tyler/Bryant), Corby Harrogate 4 (Abraham 3, Abraham/Solomon) Burton Baptist D 6 (Chatburn 2, Marks 2, Waterfield 2)
Player of the week Charlie Frost
Team of the week Corby Smash E