Georgina Credland made her Stratford-upon-Avon league debut for Henley Pasties against Ashorne and asked to play the opening three sets, as she had her young daughter with her, a request to which Ashorne gracefully acceded. She began by defeating Chris Bowles in straight games, but subsequently may have wished for a breather after being involved in both contests to be settled in the decider. Credland celebrated a narrow victory over Steve Bolton, but was unfortunate to lose out to Roger Pye despite scoring a point more than her opponent over the course of their encounter. However that success was all the village team could muster as they finished on the wrong end of a 9-1 result with Mike Evetts and Jason Rainey earning maximums for Pasties.
Blazing Paddles captain Nello Mauri was on fine form as his team won by the same score when they visited Veterans. He recorded a treble without reply, while Wilf Chan was also unbeaten but had to reverse initial deficits to beat John Hunt and Brian Marston over the full distance. Dave Fordham added two wins although, in another contest to go to the wire, narrowly lost out to Hunt who thereby secured Veterans’ only consolation.
Yet another 9-1 victory was attained by Shottery B against Tanworth Taipans. Tim Fell and Awais Muhammed were untroubled, while Tony Remes notched a brace but was denied the opportunity to make it a perfect evening by Mick Welsh.
When FISSC entertained Henley B all three sets that went to a fifth game were won by the visitors which enabled them to go home with an 8-2 victory. Dave Hatcher and David Milton overturned early disadvantages to finally overcome Malcolm Smith and, in the most keenly fought encounter of the evening, Stuart Latham-Marr took the honours against Mark Jones. The Farmer played his best table tennis of the season to earn a two game lead before being pegged back and eventually losing the fifth 13-11. Jones did gain some consolation by overcoming Hatcher who also lost out to Peter Florence.
It was a good week for the Henley B trio as the team also inflicted the first defeat of the season upon Shottery B in the prestigious SONA knockout cup. At the conclusion of play they were just 21 points short of their opponents’ tally, but a handicap adjustment of 64 saw them comfortably through. The semi-final draw sees Henley B play Cup holders Blazing Paddles with Henley Pasties at home to Ashorne.
Author: Mike Evetts via Stratford-upon-Avon Table Tennis League
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The 2018-19 season has seen an increase in competing Stratford League team numbers to fourteen, with three teams playing out of Eveshams burgeoning JLM Academy and two from Birminghams only dedicated , single use table tennis club, Colebridge.
With JLM providing a table tennis facility in Stratford town centre on Friday evenings from the end of October , there are encouraging signs that the grass roots of this great sport are flourishing in Stratford upon Avon.