Nomads Panthers and Walton A fielded their strongest threesomes when they met this week in Division One of the Clacton & District League but it was reigning champions Panthers who prevailed to beat their title rivals 8-2 and move top of the embryonic League table.
James Denyer won his three for the Panthers but Gary Young gave him a run for his money, not to mention a massive scare, Denyer taking their individual match by the narrowest of margins (11-9, 8-11, 11-4, 9-11, 14-12). Sam Hume and Greg Green supported well to take a couple each for the Panthers.
Both Walton points came from matches which went the distance, Daniel Young excelling to beat Hume 3-2 (11-7, 10-12, 7-11, 11-8, 11-3) and Gary Young edging out Green 3-2 (8-11, 10-12, 11-6, 12-10, 11-8).
Walton B are proving the surprise team of the Division and this week they recorded their fourth win in as many matches, beating Walton C 9-1 to maintain their place among the leading teams. Kevin James and Colin Dearman took trebles whilst Derek Willis won two and was only denied his hat-trick by a determined Graham Buxton who won their encounter 3-2 (6-11, 14-12, 13-11, 12-14, 11-7).
There was also a double hat-trick as Brotherhood A defeated Walton D 8-2, Martin Edwards and Luke Burridge the unbeaten pair, with Kevin Gowlett winning a couple. But both Edwards and Burridge were involved in tight matches against Jason Gale, Edwards beating the Walton player 11-8 in the fifth and Burridge winning 3-2 (11-9, 8-11, 8-11, 14-12, 11-4). Gale beat Gowlett to take one of the Walton points whilst the other came from an unexpected doubles win for Mark Ratcliffe and Mark Gale, who played only in the doubles, against Edwards and Burridge.
It was also 8-2 for Windsor Eagles against Nomads Lions. Paul Hume stayed unbeaten, with Mel Rampton and Phil Smith each winning two. Adam Cuthbert won the Lions’ two points whilst Adam Wilkin will feel unfortunate not to have taken a third, going down 2-3 (11-6, 5-11, 12-10, 7-11, 12-14) to Smith.
In Division Two the top three sides all enjoyed convincing wins, with Lawford recording the best of them all, a first whitewash result in the Division this season by defeating bottom team Nomads Ocelots 10-0. Richard Spence, Jack Cansdale and Ian Sherwood all took trebles but the Ocelots made the Lawford lads work hard for their points, Spence defeating Allen Denyer 11-4 in the fifth and Sherwood edging past Kevin Hume 11-9 in the fifth.
Brotherhood B beat a Brotherhood E team fielding a guest player 8-2, Martin Scarfe the only player to stay unbeaten on the night. Kevin Pryor’s two for the ‘E’ team included an 11-4 in the decider win over Paul Alden.
A second all-Brotherhood clash also ended 8-2, Russell Hillier and Barry Allen taking hat-tricks as the ‘C’ team beat the ‘D’ team. Tricia Salter won a couple but was denied her maximum by Mark Beckham who took their individual match by a tight 14-12 in the decider. The ‘D’ team’s second point came from an excellent doubles win, Beckham and reserve Graham Healey beating Salter and Hillier 11-6 in the fifth.
The all-Windsor clash between the Buzzards and the Harriers ended in an 8-2 victory for the Buzzards, Dave Martin and Andy Cawley both notching up hat-tricks. Isabel Barton of the Harriers was involved in the two five-setters of the evening, beating Pete Bloomfield 16-14, 7-11, 7-11, 11-6, 11-4 but going down 12-10, 6-11, 9-11, 11-6, 3-11 to Martin.
And in yet another match which ended 8-2, Nomads Jaguars beat Windsor Kestrels. Chris Petrou’s hat-trick for the Jaguars included an 11-4 in the decider win over Graham Bunce whilst Doug Green’s maximum included two five-setters, beating Bunce 11-8 in the fifth and Debra Found 11-5 in the fifth. But the closest match of the evening saw Windsor’s Jackie Bunce edge past Jaguars’ reserve Bob Jillins 3-2 (11-9, 11-6, 6-11, 9-11, 13-11).
Brotherhood F produced the most emphatic result in Division Three, defeating Nomads Lynx 10-0, with Elliana Burridge, Ben Bryden and Alex Marsh all taking maximum points.
Three for Peter Aumord, two for Kayley Rodriguez and a debut League win for Pam Blakeley saw Windsor Penguins home 7-3 against Windsor Robins. Neil Chegwidden won a couple for the Robins and Oleksandra Klymenko one.
Alan Rutledge made his first appearance of the season and finished unbeaten as Windsor Magpies defeated Nomads Ocelots 8-2. There were two each for Malcolm Caley and John Plummer whilst John Magill’s two wins for the Ocelots included the notable scalp of Plummer, Magill winning 3-2 (11-8, 4-11, 11-8, 7-11, 11-6).
Finally, Walton E maintained their unbeaten start to the season with an 8-2 success against Windsor Merlins. Lynette Sparks was the only player to stay undefeated, her treble including an 11-7 in the decider victory over Sam Plummer. Tony Sharman and Maggie Earle won two each for Walton whilst Plummer won the two points for the Merlins.
* There’s a revised date for the Handicapped Singles Tournament, traditionally held early in the New Year. The event this season will be held on Sunday 13th February and, because of the unavailability of the Windsor venue at St James’ Hall, will take place at the Clacton Coastal Academy Sports Hall.
Walton B 9 Walton C 1
Brotherhood A 8 Walton D 2
Windsor Eagles 8 Nomads Lions 2
Walton A 2 Nomads Panthers 8
Windsor Harriers 2 Windsor Buzzards 8
Brotherhood C 8 Brotherhood D 2
Nomads Bobcats 0 Lawford 10
Brotherhood E 2 Brotherhood B 8
Nomads Jaguars 8 Windsor Kestrels 2
Windsor Penguins 7 Windsor Robins 3
Brotherhood F 10 Nomads Lynx 0
Windsor Magpies 8 Nomads Ocelots 2
Windsor Merlins 2 Walton E 8