With half a season played, Chelmsford A (division 1) and Galleywood C (division 4) are the sole undefeated teams in the Chelmsford & District League as Danbury M’s perfect start to the season finally ended (see division 5 section below).

Chelmsford A’s record of 10 matches unbeaten is under serious threat on Monday night as they host division 1 leaders Old Chelmsfordians A at Chelmsford Sports and Athletics Centre.

Handicap Cup Round 2

Highwood B booked a place in the quarter-finals of the handicap cup with a 5-3 win over Writtle D. Writtle stormed into a 3-1 lead thanks to two wins for Matthew Brown (70) before Keith Pallett (36) kick-started the revival with a two-game win over David Carter (54).

Nicola Pippen (45) kept up the momentum for Highwood as she squeezed past Malcolm Henstock (59) 21-19 in the deciding game before David Cockrell (45) beat Carter 2-1 having trailed 1-0. Trailing 4-3 on the night, the eighth match was a must win for Writtle but Brown was unable to put any sort of pressure on Pippen who comfortably took her team through to the next round.

Evie Knaapen (50) and Jamie Elliott (60) both won twice as Buttsbury F went through to the quarter-finals with a 5-1 win over Chelmsford H. The evening was not as straightforward for the hosts as the scoreline might suggest with four of the six matches going the three-game distance.

With Buttsbury taking an early 3-1 lead, Elliott fought back from one game down to beat Jacqui Smith (40) before Freya Hart (30) also overturned a 1-0 deficit to beat Shengbing Zhu (34). Knaapen then wrapped up the tie with a come-from-behind win over Peter Davenport (36).

Salih Salim (45) won three as Chelmsford G became the third team of the week to progress to the quarter finals following a 5-2 victory over Writtle B. Salim beat both Dave Moles (55) and Colin Barham (53) in two games before recovering from 1-0 down to beat Ian Hockley (55).

Division 1

Old Chelmsfordians A took back control of division 1 with a comprehensive 10-0 victory over Chelmsford B. Paul Lucas, Mark Mulley and Keiran Lally dropped just one individual game between them – Aidan Lees had gone 1-0 up in his match against Lucas only for Lucas to take the next three games by a tight 12-10, 11-9, 11-8 scoreline. Lees had earlier tested Mulley in a 13-11, 13-11, 11-4 loss.

Keith Adams, Ian Whiteside and James Donald all fired hat tricks as Danbury C consolidated third place with a 10-0 victory over Writtle A. While Adams and Donald dropped just one game between them, Whiteside won from 2-0 down against Ryan Pitt and beat Richard Storey 11-9 in the fifth game decider.

Standings div 1: 1: OCA A 77 points (from 10 matches), 2: Chelmsford A 70 points (10 matches), 3: Danbury C 69 points (12 matches).

Division 4

Maldon B went level on points with unbeaten division four leaders Galleywood C following a 9-1 home win over Hatfield Peverel E. Chris Ravenhill and Ella Sach scored trebles while Andrea Alleyne was denied one of her own when Kath Little won the deciding game in their contest.

Ravenhill earned his second successive treble with four game wins over Little and Philip West while his victory over Davina Brazier was won in the fifth game by an 18-16 scoreline. Sach continued her upturn in form – just one loss in her last nine matches – defeating all three Hatfield Peverel players in four games.

Standings div 4: 1: Galleywood C 61 points (from 8 matches), 2: Maldon B 61 points (from 9 matches), 3: Chelmsford G 60 points (9 matches),

Division 5

Tenth placed Buttsbury C inflicted a first league defeat of the season for division five leaders Danbury M with a comprehensive 8-2 home win on Friday night. Bolstered by Oscar Hutt and Lucy Elliott who have played some of the season to date in division four, Buttsbury raced into a 4-1 lead at the halfway stage.

When David Smith’s victory reduced the arrears to 4-2 there may still have been hope for the table-toppers but Hart and Hutt fought back from 2-1 down in the doubles to win the last two games 16-14, 14-12, and Hutt and Elliott completed their hat-trick of victories to dash the visitors hopes of a tenth straight victory.

Standings div 5: 1: Danbury M 70 points (from 10 matches), 2: Chelmsford J 59 points (10 matches), 3: Chelmsford H 55 points (from 9 matches).