The second round of the Habershon Cup saw it’s biggest casualty over Christmas. The
cup is a handicapped knock-out event to allow the lower standard players a
chance to take on the top teams. Well the handicaps worked in this round
because Scorpions I who languish only two off the bottom of the League managed
to see off Scorpions A who are currently top of the League. Requiring only an
average of two points per game played to win, the youngsters of the I team,
Adam Szabo, Lewis Ellams and Finlay Wootton, won with eight games to spare. The
red faces belonged to Alan Battye, Craig Hastie and Jamie Hudd.
Meanwhile the same round saw the closest result possible in the event. With a total points score
of 555, Scorpions F managed to lose by just one point, 554, to Scorpions C. It
all came down to the last match where Emily Walker from the F team had to gain
20 points off Micheal Taylor of the C team in order to draw the match. The
first three game went 4-11, 6-11, 4-11 leaving just 6 points required from the
last game of the evening. 5-11!! The totals had to be checked three times
before the result was finally acknowledged.
The last local table tennis event of 2014 was the Supa8s tournament held at Dearne Valley College.
The entry this year was a little lower than normal but that did not detract
from a hugely successful competition.
Group C was a reasonably straightforward contest between eight junior players. Adam Szabo remained
undefeated throughout the whole day and he was the only player to beat Aaran
Radford who came in a close second. Alex Selway took the third prize only
losing to those two. Lewis Ellams was unlucky to lose to both Aaran and Alex
deuce in the fifth each time but this was not enough to get him a top three place.
Group B was very close with fourplayers all just losing one match before the final round, Edmund Lau beat Ali Nadzafalijevs to top the group whilst Lewis Robinson defeated Alex Bland to finish second. It
was so close that, if Alex had beaten Lewis, he would have won instead of being fourth.
And so to the top group being contested by the top six players on the day. After some very close and hard fought contests the group was eventually won by the undefeated Harry Saxton, although
he went to five against his nearest rivals. The next three places depended on
the result of the last match of the day between Jamie Hudd and Steven Arliss
which the former won in five meaning he ended up fourth, Arliss third and this
allowed Mark Johnson to jump to second. So the glory went to Harry Saxton only
15 years old from Wickersley School and rapidly turning into a quality player.
At this point it would only be correct to mention the death at the age
of 96 of Arthur Eastwood just before Christmas. Mr. Eastwood was a veteran
table tennis player and a senior official of the Rother Valley League for many
years. His funeral and cremation took place on Wednesday and was attended by a
large number of family, friends and table tennis associates.