There are shocks, and there are shocks. And there is Paul Davison losing to Zach Harrington.

The six-times Braintree Table Tennis League men’s singles champion’s defeat by a player who won only 20 per cent of his sets last season is akin to Manchester City losing to Colchester United.

It came in Netts A’s 8-2 win over Liberal A. Harrington had already lost to Joe Meleschko so little drama was expected as he faced Davison.

Even Harrington’s success in winning the first game looked to be merely a blip as Davison hit back to take the second.

But, as Liberal secretary Robin Armstrong put it: “Paul’s game was obviously off. Smashes are going in the net, catching the top of the net, missing the table narrowly. And Zak is keeping the rallies going.”

Harrington won the third, Davison the fourth and although “Zach was hanging on by his fingernails,” as Armstrong put it, he held on for a famous victory.

Davison summed it up succinctly: “I played terribly. Not much more to say!”

The other two fixtures in Division One finished level. Alistair Hill won his three singles to help Netts B share the points with Rayne B while Dan Anderson’s unbeaten evening did likewise for Notley B against their A team.

In Division Two, Sudbury Nomads continued their impressive start with an 8-2 win over Rayne D, with Karl Baldwin and Jack Cansdale unbeaten.

Gareth Davies and Garry Fryatt were unbeaten in Liberal C’s 7-3 win over Rayne C – and Dave Hardy was unlucky not to join them. He had a straight-games win over Dave Punt and lost his other two at 11-8 and 11-9 in the fifth.

In a match where six of the sets went the full five games, Notley C overcame their own F team 7-3 with both Gordon Fairchild and Richard Upson undefeated.

Sean Clift’s unbeaten run ended after nine wins when Joe Meleschko pipped him at 11-9 in the fifth game in Notley D’s draw with Netts C.

Sudbury Wanderers picked up another impressive win in division three, 9-1 over Rayne F, with Peter Abbott and Louise Hartshorn again unbeaten.

There were two Netts v Notley matches and it was the latter who came out on top 8-2 in both. The H team beat Netts D, with three sets from Graham Chinnery, and the G team beat Netts E, where Matt Brooks and son Jamie were unbeaten.

Tim Townsend remained undefeated for Rayne G against Notley I but his teammates were unable to contribute and Notley ran out 7-3 winners.