SDTTL - 2017/8 - Reports at the Half way stage of the Season:
- Premier Division
A late result from last week means that we have two of Warehouse A’s games to report on this week. The first was a narrow 4-5 defeat to Lentern A for whom Keith Adams put his new serves to good use in acquiring a hat-trick, while there was a fine first Premier Division win for Berti Makolli over Ian Wall.
Warehouse’s second game was a 7-2 defeat against Rawreth B, with the MoM on the night being Eric Green who mixed a magical blend of defence and attack. The highlight of the evening was his 3-0 win over Kim Shead. Bruce Kettle and Mike Hayes picked up two each, both losing out to Shead.
Thorpe Bay A were clearly keen to get to the after-match refreshments as they demolished Hadleigh Forum B 9-0 without dropping a single game, which in this keenly contested division is certainly no mean feat.
Similarly, Rawreth A made light work of Hockley A as they also won 9-0, most of those games being fairly straight forward except the one between Rawreth’s Lee Prentice and Hockley’s Steve Woodley, which went the distance.
And finally, performance of the week goes to Hullbridge B’s Glenn Johnson who won all three games against the Thorpe Bay B trio of Liam Squirrell, Richard Stubbington and Gurj Bhambra. Tim Cramphorn also chipped in with a win over Richard Stubbington to leave the final score 5-4 to the Bay.
Duncan Taylor DRS
- 1st Division
Exactly halfway through the season and things are taking an interesting turn, which will leave it all to play for in the second half of the season.
Firstly, congratulations to the young squad from Hullbridge E, who have moved forward and lead the table by 3 points and will be looking to stay there and secure successive promotions, which will enable them to test themselves in the Premier division. This week they were against bottom club, Lentern C, and secured an impressive 8-1 win. The team this week, showing their strength in depth, included maximums for Reece Harris-Griffiths and Dan Zeffie with two for Dan Young. Chris Crooks spoiled the party with a good win over Dan Young in the last but one game of the night. This leaves Lentern in a precarious position at the bottom of the table, but only 1 point adrift, and they will be looking for a better second half to maintain their Division 1 status.
Lentern B, who have led the table for much of the season and have 3 players averaging over 75%, find themselves in second place with a 5 point cushion over 3rd place which shows how well the Hullbridge youngsters have played. This week they had a tough encounter with Rawreth C, with Lentern coming out close 5-4 winners. Consistent performers, Martin Archie and John Lott scored two each with Chris Crooks (playing up) adding the final point in a good win over Gary McCarthy, who was pointless on the night. Garry Hartgrove played well to earn a maximum but only one point further could be added by John Blackman to leave them short, but safely sitting in mid-table.
Hockley C have done well to hang on to 3rd position, winning only 1 game less than the two teams above them, with David Chenery able to post an impressive 72% individual win average in his first season in the first division. This week they won 5-4 against one of the teams in the chasing pack, Hullbridge C, in a highly competitive game. With only 2 points separating 3rd place from 7th, each game was crucial. Alex Barnetson played well to win all 3 games including close 5 set wins over Matt Rolfe and Sid Dorn. Josh Copeland and Dan Patynski added one each to give the home team victory. Lin Roff played well for her two points including a 5 set win over Dan Patynski and Matt Rolfe in the last game also won a close 5 setter against Dan, winning 13-11 in the final game. Finally, Sid Dorn also added a point for Hullbridge. Both these teams are involved and capable of a second half catch up on the teams above them.
Customs A have done well to finish in 4th position after a slow start to the season. Roy Thomas is topping the averages with 92% and will be difficult to beat as always. However, when he doesn’t play, like this week, then the team will miss his winning points. This week, Hockley B took advantage of Roy’s absence and came away with a 5-4 win which lifts them one place off the bottom. Hockley B start player, Dave Colwill (89% average) came away with all three points and it would have been an interesting contest between the two if Roy had played. Joe Lock and Dennis Squirrell added a point each from the match to secure the win. In a match where no-one was pointless, Dave Morgan and Dale Gutteridge added a point each, with Brian Rackham scoring two for the Customs men. Hockley will need to continue in this vein of form to pull themselves out of the relegation dogfight.
Canvey A who were without a game this week, sit in 5th position.
Another upset for the form books was Warehouse B who finished the half strongly with their first 9-0 win of the season over Invicta A, who had previously found some form, winning 4 out of their last 6 games. The successful Warehouse team was led by Berti Makolli who had his first maximum of the season, along with Tony Millward, with only his second. Top player, Mark Rudland (87.5%) continued the rout winning his 3 comfortably with only two games in the whole match going to 5 sets (Both of which were in Berti’s games).
The unlucky team from Invicta of Steve Marr, Tony Ayliffe and Mike Piper will need to find some form and points if they wish to close the gap between the chasing pack above them.
Finally, both Brand Identity B and Hadleigh Forum C were without a game this week but sit dangerously close to the relegation zone and need to improve with their second half performance. They do hold an 8-9 point lead over the bottom two clubs which may prove crucial in the closing weeks.
And really finally, thanks to all the team players and captains who have submitted their results in a timely manner with no postponements to catch up on. I wish everyone a Merry Xmas and a Happy New Year and hope everyone has an enjoyable second half to the season.
Barrie Delf DRS
- 2nd Division
A Rob Skews hat trick in their away fixture at Basildon Hospital ensured leaders RESSC finished the season on top of the table. A pair each from Mike Worship and Ron Coutts gave them a comfortable 7 – 2 victory. The medics’ Albert Harrison was unfortunate not to be rewarded for his efforts, whilst Chudi Ukpaka just missed out on his maximum losing to Rob 7 – 11 in the fifth set.
The match between Hockley D and Runnymede was a bit closer than the 8 – 1 outcome suggests. Some of the four set matches could easily have gone to five. Hockley came out on top, however, and made it three wins in a row, with James Spencer and Paul Strutt both registering their first hat tricks, and the team’s first hat tricks of the season. Closest match of the evening was James’ five set win against Barry Edgar, coming back from 2-1 down. Barry got the consolation point for Runnymede with a straight sets win against Neal Klyman.
There were two very close encounters this week, both resulting in 5 – 4 away wins. The first was between Stanford Le Hope B and Hullbridge F. The visitors took an early 2-0 lead, before Stanford pegged it back, then going 3-2 in front. The home team’s John Handscombe led their resistance with two wins. At 4 - 4 it was down to the final game. Hullbridge’s Will Skelt prevailed over Martin Winter in four sets, to give him an un-beaten evening, and his team a narrow victory.
The other contest saw Invicta B hosting Wakering. This, too, reached 4 – 4, with all to play for in the final rubber. In this Stewart Mills overcame Mike Keeble to give Wakering the advantage. Andy Humphris and Barrie Murphy shared Invicta’s points, whilst Zac England got two, and Nigel Cook one for Wakering.
In the derby between Rawreth E and Rawreth D, the visitors came out on top against their two-man hosts. Sam Thompson again was undefeated, whist his team mates Bradley Nunn (playing up) won two and Olivia Jones one. George Davis won two for Rawreth E
- 3rd Division
League leaders Hadleigh Forum D received an unwanted Christmas surprise when they suffered only their second defeat of the season 6-3 to Rawreth F. Mike Nunn made one of his infrequent appearances for Rawreth but came away with the MOTM and maintained his unbeaten record in the league. He gave them a match winning lead at 5-3 when he beat David Thomas who had previously come back from 2-1 down against Jan Thorpe to bring the match level at 3-3. There was no coming back after that for Hadleigh who, despite that defeat remain 8 points clear of brand Identity in second place. Jan got two wins and Bradley Nunn one to make up the points whilst David got a brace for Hadleigh and Ashley Brett the final point. No joy this time for Satwant Gill.
There was a real ding dong game between Stanford C and Hockley F with the match going to the final game of the evening when Tony Papasifakis beat Claire Stringer in straight sets to clinch the match for Stanford. Both teams included a younger player in Max Russell for Stanford and Aaryan Vatsa for Hockley and they fought out a five set battle with Max coming back from two sets down before winning the final three 11/6, 11/2, 11/2. Max did well again against MOTM David Cross leading him 2-1 before before going down in five, and Dave had to work hard again winning another five setter 11/9 in the final set against Vaughan Chambers. Tony and Vaughan both won two for Stanford and Max one, whilst Claire got the remaining point for Hockley.
Hullbridge H extended their winning run to seven games and moved up to fourth in the table by beating Hockley E 6-3 with Tony Molisso, Brian Farmer and Bill Hoy all winning two games. None of them could get past the ever improving Gary Linzell who remained unbeaten on the night but unfortunately both Kevin Blythe and Ron Rogerson were unable to make an impression on the night. Gary was taken to five by Brain who led 2-1 at one stage before Gary saw the game out 11/8, 11/8.
Warehouse C returned from their long trip into the annexe against Rawreth H with an expected 8-1 win with three points each for Conrad Gomes and MOTM Ro Brett and a brace from Graham Back. Thomas Bailey got the consolation pint with a good win over Graham and Noah Unstead almost added another but went down 13/11 in the fifth against Conrad.
- Team of the Week Rawreth F
- Player of the Week Mike Nunn
Paul Strutt DRS