Table Tennis by Paul Myers
The Handicap Cup has reached the semi-final stage in the Aldershot and District Table Tennis League with a team from each division being represented.
The first semi-final was between Frimley E (Div Four) and Ash C (Div Two) in which Ash C had to give starts from 22pts to a maximum of 36pts a set. Ash C took an early lead with Ian Saxby beating Jon Ball. Then in came Roger Whichelow who won two and Paul Phelan who won one to give Frimley a 3-1 advantage. Ash's Mike Levey then beat Jon Ball 49-47 to make the score 3-2. Unfortunately for Ash C the handicaps proved too tough against a very well handicapped side as Whichelow and Phelan (both unbeaten on the evening) won another set each to win the match 5-2 and a place in the Final with the last two sets being conceeded.
The other semi-final was between Frimley D (Div Three) and Central B (Div One) with Central B giving starts between 18pts to 36pts each set. Paul Myers gave Central an early lead beating Robbie Roopun 44-33 only for Margaret Thornton to level the match receiving 36pts start from the awesome Graham Watts. Peter Millard, Watts and Myers all then won again to make the score 4-1 to Central B and needing one more win for the victory. Watts secured the win beating Bob Holmden (35pts start) 44-43 to see Central B into yet another Handicap Cup Final. The final result was 6-3 with Paul Myers, Graham Watts and Peter Millard all doubling up on the night but thwarted by the consistent Margaret Thornton who won all three.
The Final will be between Central B and Frimley E with the Division One side facing the daunting prospect of having to give away the maximum 36pts start in each set.
Meanwhile in the League, Ash C have now pulled 16pts clear of Tennis C in Division Two and are the only team not to have lost a match so far throughout the whole of the 2008/09 League season. Ash C beat bottom team Tennis E 10-0 and second placed Tennis C 7-3. Alan Gess was the man in form bagging trebles in both matches. Tennis C bounced back to winning ways by slaughtering lowly Broadmoor B 10-0 with John Taylor, Shaun Newbold and George Earle all unbeaten on the evening. Tennis B in third place and 13pts behind Tennis C beat Fleet CC A 8-2 with trebles from Brian Hartles and Graham Barson. Graham Dickson (2wins) just missed out on his maximum losing 13-11 in the fifth game to Fleets David Joyce. Frimley B having a good season beat Ash E 9-1 thanks to Pete Good and Derek Seager trebles, however Sandy Simpson playing up beat Andrew Davies (2wins) to prevent the whitewash. Tennis D beat Tennis E 9-1 in their local derby with Andy Murdock and Graham Streets winning all three. Paul Shakespeare also playing up a division, beat Neil Print (2wins) to avoid the drubbing. Tennis D were then thrashed 8-2 by Ash D with Nigel Tustin and Frank Winnard both unbeaten on the evening. Bourne A beat Cody B 8-2 in a double header with both Paul Creamer and Mike Gunton in hat-trick form. Other notable performances were Roy Benfields hat-trick for Ash D against Bourne A and John Harveys treble for Cody B against Fleet CC A.
In Division Four, Ash H have been knocked off the top spot which they have held for the majority of the season, by Fleet CC B, who are eight points clear but have played one game more than their arch rivals. Ash H could only draw with Tennis H where as Fleet CC B beat them 9-1 with Jeremy Fox and Andy Blunden bagging trebles. Both the top two teams beat Bentley B 7-3 with Mark Holbrook and Andy Blunden in hat-trick form for Fleet whilst Terry Kavanagh was unbeaten for Ash H. Bentley B's Les Vaill won three out of six in both matches. The result which took Fleet to the top though was their 8-2 win over Ash J in which Blunden was again unbeaten with Holbrook and Marge Massey winning two each. Farnham Cohesion continue to perform well in their first season and grabbed a couple of 8-2 wins against Frimley E and Fleet CC C. The exciting Dong Ming Lau was unbeaten in both with Chris Secker and Dean Robertson winning four out of six. Frimley E got back to winning ways by beating Cody E 8-2 and Fleet CC C 6-4. Frimley's Paul Phelan was unbeaten in the first match as was Jon Ball against Fleet CC C.
Broadmoor A continue to set the pace in Division One with Farnham Central B breathing down their necks in second. Broadmoor A hold an eleven points lead at this stage over Central B, who have two games in hand. Broadmoor beat both Challoner and Tennis A 10-0 with Mark Handcock, Barry Morten and Clive Banham all unbeaten in the romps. Central B also beat Tennis A 10-0 and beat mid-table Ash B 8-2. Graham Watts won six out of six with Paul Myers and Peter Millard winning five out of six. In third are Central A who beat Challoner 10-0 and Frimley A 6-4. Phil Snelson bagged a treble in the first with Paul Massey and Norman Swift who played in both winning five out of six. Ash A in fourth beat Bentley A 6-4 with Ross Saxby, Chris Hazelhurst and Nigel Care (playing up) all winning two. The shock of the night was Ross Saxbys loss to Andy Cunningham who wore his unconventional table tennis kit of jeans and a jumper. Bentley A beat Shackleford 10-0 with Micky Lang, Steve French and Andy Mudie all trebling up. Bentley have an ace up their sleeves with Andy Mudie who looks very useful, and when he plays, this team will be very hard to beat. Central C beat Tennis A 7-3 with Robin Pretty grabbing a treble. In reply Stuart Middlemiss bagged a duo for the Tennis men including a good win over Dave Phelps (2wins).
Finally in Division Three Tennis F have wrestled back the lead and gone to the top again. However Ash F are on their coat tails in second with a game in hand and are only one point behind leaders. Tennis F beat Ash G 10-0 and Frimley D 7-3 with the regular warriors of Peter Killick, brothers Graham and Roger McCulley all winning five out of six. Ash F without their main squad drew with Kingfisher A, in which Sandy Simpson won all three, in reply Roy Pike and Graham Marshall bagged doubles for Kingfisher. Frimley D whitewashed Cody D with Robbie Roopun, Gary Nicholson and Margaret Thornton winning trebles. Frimley C in fourth but likely to finish third beat Kingfisher A 6-4 thanks to an Anthony Connelly treble and Rob Brittain double. Tennis G who have had a great season but will probably finish fourth, beat Ash G 9-1 with Bob Brown, Ray Eason and Keith Johnson all trebling up.