With the quarter final round of the Challenge Trophy played last week, there was a chance to catch up on some outstanding games throughout the three divisions, therefore the report this week includes these fixtures.
Chesterwell B 9 v Old Grammarians A 1
With the visitors lacking Steve Kendall, the hosts were at the very least expecting their biggest win of the season with a strong possibility of a clean sweep. However, in a season of surprise results, Luke Hughes is well up in both giving and receiving. He saw off Roger Fleming and Phil Laurence with ease but reverted to type with a surprisingly heavy defeat to Mick Ball, going down 5-11, 9-11, 6-11. Carlton Ellwood cruised to his treble but Graham Ellson was on the verge of another major shock before winning out 9-11, 9-11, 11-2, 11-7, 11-6 over the struggling Laurence, but recovered to win his expected treble.
Thrapston 5 v Chesterwell B 5
Thrapston became the Leagues leading draw specialists when their two man side recorded their 6th draw of the season. Chris Warliker won out 11-8 and 11-9 in the 5th ends against Graham Ellson and Carlton Ellwood respectively, but followed the seasons pattern of surprise results, going down 14-12, 10-12, 8-11, 11-6, 9-11 to surprise specialist Luke Hughes. Graham Ellson won with ease 11-6, 11-5, 11-6 against Mark Stockley who recovered to win out against Hughes and Ellwood. Warliker and Stockley saw off Ellwood and Hughes in the doubles 11-9, 11-9, 11-5 for a creditable draw.
Chesterwell A 7 v Wanderers A 3
In this vital game for the runners-up position, both sides fielded reserves but whereas Graham Ellson hardly weakened the hosts, Stewart Williams was well off pace, failing to register. Ellson did extremely well to win out 7-11, 11-6, 12-10, 5-11, 11-4 over Tony Wharton who was well beaten Valdy Papiernik. Mike Pond, somewhat surprisingly went down to Wharton but did well to edge out Andy Law 11-9 in the 5th. Papiernik and Pond concluded an excellent victory with a 13-11, 8-11, 13-11, 11-8 doubles win over Law and Wharton.
Westfield A 4 v WDHA Royals 6
The visitors gave a superb performance to inflict the second defeat on the prospective champions and keep in the fight for the runners-up spot. Kevin Bird alone amongst the registered players not to have received a
surprise defeat, his only one being at the hands of his highly rated namesake, recorded his customary treble with ease but his team mates Patryk Polanski and Travis Holly failed to register, although Holly went to five with Ethan Ali and Polanski with Abin Islam, losing out 7-11 and 1-11 respectively. The hosts gained their 4th point with Bird and Polanski winning out 11-7, 7-11, 12-10, 11-9 over Ali and Patel to leave them needing 14 points from 2 games to guarantee the title.
Wanderers B 2 v Chesterwell B 8
The hosts were brought back to earth after their Cup exploits being well beaten by mid table Chesterwell B. Luke Hughes went down in five to Pete Briggs and Stewart Williams 7-11 and 14-16 respectively but as per usual avoided a blank, seeing off Bob Hickson 11-7, 11-7, 11-7. Williams was unlucky going down 10-12 in the 5th to Carlton Ellwood and 4-11 in the 5th to Graham Ellson, who both went on to gain good trebles, and combined to complete a good nights work winning out 13-11, 11-8, 11-8 in the doubles over Briggs and Williams.
Old Grammarians A 1 v Westfield A 9
With only a game to come against the bottom markers and a 7 point lead, the visitors see, ensured of retaining their title. In this latest game, Kevin Bird gained his customary easy treble and the hosts’ only chance of any legs was in the return of Steve Kendall from sunny climes. Whilst easily seeing off Travis Holly, he was somewhat surprisingly beaten in five 11-8, 7-11, 12-10, 9-11, 11-13 by Patryk Polanski to earn the hosts their solitary point.
Thrapston 2 v WDHA Royals 8
The visitors drew level in the runners-up position with their latest victory. For the hosts Alan Tyler continues to struggle and failed to gain a leg. However, Mark Stockley fought well, beating Virat Patel 11-6 in the 5th and going down 7-11 in the 5th to Abin Islam. A further point was gained in the opener when Chris Warliker won out 7-11, 11-8, 11-8, 11-7 over Ethan Ali. With strugglers Old Grammarians to play, the visitors are slight favourites for the runners-up spot as Chesterwell A are involved in a Club derby against their B side, with no favours likely to be given.
St. John B 9 v Higham Band A 1
This re-arranged match saw St. Johns maintain their title challenge with a thumping 9-1 victory over Higham Band. Mike Terry’s 9th successive maximum plus a treble from Alan Hill and 2 wins from Steve Mansfield did the damage with Terry & Mansfield later joining forces to secure their team’s 9th point with victory in the doubles in 3 straight sets. Keith Stockley salvaged Higham’s lone point with a good win over Mansfield and only just lost out to Terry, losing out in the 5th end. Deirdre Kiziak also put up a brave fight against Mansfield before also going down 11-7 in the 5th end.
Westfield C 7 v Higham Harriers B 3
In this 2nd re-arranged match of the week, Westfield scored a good 7-3 win over the Harriers who are now probably out of danger of finishing in the bottom 2 places in the league. Steve Fuller scored another good treble for the home team and was well supported with Tim Mason winning twice and Mark Holly securing a rare single win. Neil Stevens did well to win twice for the visitors and Phil Inman chipped in with a single win. Fuller & Mason took the doubles for Westfield in 3 straight ends and their team’s 7 point haul sees them move up a place to 6th in the league.
Chesterwell C 4 v Wanderers C 6
This match was a very close affair between 2 teams lying next to each other in the league with the Wanderers finally sealing victory by taking the doubles in 5 sets, having been 2 sets down. Only 1 of the 10 games was settled in 3 ends with 6 of the remainder needing a 5th set decider. James Findlay was the only unbeaten player on the night and was backed up by a brace from Tony Wallis, the two of them later combining to take the all-important doubles. Stuart Coles was Chesterwells main point’s scorer with a good double and was supported by single wins from Maxine Shears & John Henderson. The match result sees Chesterwell move up to 3rd place in the league.
St. John B 8 v Westfield C 2
Both teams were playing their 2nd match on consecutive evenings and the home team’s 2nd good win sees them 5 points behind the league leaders with a game in hand. Another great treble from the relentless Mike Terry, ably assisted with good doubles for Steve Mansfield & Paul Lipczak did the damage and Westfield’s only points came from a fighting double from Steve Fuller. Terry & Mansfield finally took the doubles in 3 straight ends, securing their team’s 8th point.
Westfield B 10 v Higham Harriers B 0
With their main rivals for the league title securing 17 points during the week, Westfield needed a good performance to stand any chance of hanging on to their lead and they certainly came up with the goods, handing out a 10-0 mauling to the unfortunate Harriers. Charlie Clements, Mark Thomas & Charlie Morrow, making his first appearance since November, were Westfields’s maximum men and the two Charlies later teamed up to take the doubles and complete the whitewash. The Harriers tried their hardest with 6 of the 10 games going to a 4th or 5th set but were unable to turn any of their resistance into points.
The competition for the league title has now reached a thrilling climax with St. Johns possibly being the slight favourites by being only 5 points adrift but having that all important game in hand. Westfield badly needs one of St. Johns’ players to have an off night and if they do, then it’s game on!
Wanderers E 10 v Chesterwell E 0
Despite winning 10-0 this week and currently in 2nd place, it is unlikely they will finish in runner up position as Stanwick who are in 3rd place have a game in hand and trailing by only one point. No surprises then with this result over the bottom markers with hat tricks for David May, Derek Shears and Steve Hoole without losing an end.
Westfield E 2 v Higham Harriers C 8
Westfield E were unlucky to finish with only 2 points as quite a number of ends were very close. Hat tricks for Oli and Katie Hicks with Matt adding a single win as he lost out to Wendy Bradford and Stuart Rae. Although Nicole King came away scoreless she came close to all her opponents, losing to Oli 11-13 in the 4th end and Katie 12-14 in the 4th. Oli and Katie combined to add the doubles 11-9, 5-11, 11-7, 11-9 against Rae and Bradford.
Westfield D 1 v Stanwick VHTTC 9
Despite Stanwick and Westfield D being in 3rd and 4th place respectively, Stanwick came away with an easy 9-1 victory. Kevin Tivey losing out to Westfields’ Amrat Mistry 5-11, 8-11, 11-9, 9-11 for their only point. Ian Baldock and Geoff Neville with trebles also took the doubles 11-9, 11-9, 11-4 against Asish Nandi and Mistry to complete the scoreline.
Chesterwell D 9 v Westfield E 1
Playing ahead of schedule, this match was finalised with a 9-1 victory to crown Chesterwell D, winners of Division 3 as clear leaders. Only Duncan Wright slipped up losing to Westfields’ Stuart Rae 6-11, 9-11, 11-6, 8-11, and was the only set requiring a 4th end, with hat tricks for Johnathan Driscoll and Daniel Mann.
Chesterwell B 9 (Graham Ellson 3, Luke Hughes 2, Carlton Ellson 3, doubles Ellson/Ellwood)
Old Grammarians A 1 (Mick Ball)
Thrapston 5 (Chris Warliker 2, Mark Stockley 2, doubles Warliker/Stockley)
Chesterwell B 5 (Graham Ellson, Luke Hughes + 3 points by default)
Chesterwell A 7 (Graham Ellson 2, Mike Pond 2, Valdy Papiernik 2, doubles Papiernik/Pond)
Wanderers A 3 (Andy Law 2, Tony Wharton)
Westfield A 4 (Kevin Bird 3, doubles Bird/Polanski)
WDHA Royals 6 (Ethan Ali 2, Abin Islam 2, Virat Patel 2)
Wanderers B 2 (Pete Briggs, Stewart Williams)
Chesterwell B 8 (Luke Hughes, Carlton Ellwood 3, Graham Ellson 3, doubles Ellson/Ellwood)
Old Grammarians A 1 (Steve Kendall)
Westfield A 9 (Kevin Bird 3, Travis Holly 2, Patryk Polanski 3, doubles Bird/Polanski)
Thrapston 2 (Chris Warliker, Mark Stockley)
WDHA Royals 8 (Ethan Ali 2, Abin Islam 3, Virat Patel 2, doubles Ali/Islam)
St. John B 9 (Mike Terry 3, Steve Mansfield 2, Alan Hill 3, doubles Terry/Mansfield)
Higham Band A 1 (Keith Stockley)
Westfield C 7 (Mark Holly, Steve Fuller 3, Tim Mason 2, doubles Fuller/Mason)
Higham Harriers B 3 (Neil Stevens 2, Phil Inman)
Chesterwell C 4 (Stuart Coles 2, Maxine Shears, John Henderson)
Wanderers C 6 (Tony Wallis 2, James Findlay 3, doubles Findlay/Wallis)
St. John B 8 (Mike Terry 3, Steve Mansfield 2, Paul Lipczak 2, doubles Terry/Mansfield)
Westfield C 2 (Steve Fuller 2)
Westfield B 10 (Charlie Morrow 3, Charlie Clements 3, Mark Thomas 3, doubles Clements/Morrow)
Higham Harriers B 0
Wanderers E 10 (David May 3, Derek Shears 3, Steve Hoole 3, doubles May/Shears)
Chesterwell E 0
Westfield E 2 (Wendy Bradford, Stuart Rae)
Higham Harriers C 8 (Oli Hicks 3, Matt Hicks, Katie Hicks 3, doubles Oli/Katie Hicks)
Westfield D 1 (Amrat Mistry)
Stanwick VHTTC 9 (Ian Baldock 3, Geoff Neville 3, Kevin Tivey 2, doubles Baldock/Neville)
Chesterwell D 9 (Johnathan Driscoll 3, Duncan Wright 2, Daniel Mann 3, doubles Driscoll/Mann)
Westfield E 1 (Stuart Rae)