News Release - BSMTTC News 93
Dateline: 2 May 2019
On the same evening as Liverpool FC faced the might of Barcelona FC in the Nou Camp stadium in the semi-final of the Champions League, Bath Street Marine D faced the might of QVC in the Final of the Hyde Cup (the L&DTTL Division 3 Divisional Cup) at the Wavertree Labour TTC stadium. But would the outcome be similar........??
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On paper, there seemed very little between the two teams, but for that to be true in the match much would rest on the shoulders of D Team Captain, Ian McElwee. Ian has only just returned to play after a serious bout of pneumonia so this would be a big test for him, and also for his team mates Dave Stoddern and Dave McMahon. Comparatively the QVC team had finished 2nd in the Division and the BSM D team 4th, but 34 points separated the two suggesting some difference in strength.
This is what it was all about, The Hyde Cup, the trophy for the L&DTTL Division 3 Divisional Cup. A contest for all teams in Div 3 of the L&DTTL for the particular season.
For this match, QVC were able to field their strongest line-up of Dean Appleton, Andy Clarke and Panchu Xavier and having won the toss placed themselves as the 'away' team giving them the advantage of the call for sets.
Naturally, QVC called on the BSM No.3 for the first set, Dave McMahon facing the No.2 Andy Clarke. The first two ends were real nip and tuck and Dave had chances in both to take the game, but both slipped away at deuce on each occasion. In the third, Andy built up a significant lead, and although Dave fought back to close the gap there just weren't enough points left, the set slipped away.
Captain Ian brought himself on for the next set against the QVC No.3 Panchu Xavier. Somehow after a very good start the first end slipped away to Panchu at deuce. Ian fought back and took the second comfortably, but in so doing picked up a groin strain at the end of the second game. This severely affected his movement and prevented Ian from executing his favorite forehand short which had been so devastating in the second. Panchu capitalized playing simple keep it on the table, table tennis, forcing Ian to try for his winning shots. Perfect and effective tactics enabling Panchu to take the next two games and the set. The situation looked grave.
Dave Stoddern then put in a tremendous display against the QVC No.1 Dean Appleton, a player with an average of 97% in the division this season. After losing the first end, Dave fought back to take the second, but couldn't maintain the effort falling foul to the great variety of serving from his opponent and his greater consistency in both defense and counter attack. 3:0 to the QVC team, the writing seemed to be on the wall.
Captain Ian decided that he could not call himself back on for the 4th set, so left it for his team mates to face the next two sets. Both fought hard for every point but simply couldn't match the greater consistency of their opponents. Dave Stoddern had a real chance to avoid the whitewash but yet again saw the chance slip away in a deuce game. Both sets went to QVC giving them an emphatic 0:5 vicory and the trophy.
All the sets were ably umpired by Graham Rollinson on behalf of the L&DTTL and the match official for the League and referee was Stan Clarke. Graham & Stan presented the trophies to each team on behalf of the Liverpool League. A good match and played in a good spirit, but like LFC despite a very good performance by the BSM D team, on the night it was not quite enough.