News Release - BSMTTC News 138
Dateline: 5 March 2022

Vets Cup Roundup

 

We have seen two excellent table tennis matches at Marine this week, involving 3 of the club's teams, in the Quarter Final stage of the Liverpool League's Frank Murphy Veterans Handicap Cup competition. 

The club had three teams left in the last eight of the competition, and as two were unfortunately playing each other it ensured that we would have at least 1 left in the last four! The great thing about the handicap cup is that it pitches players of all standards against each other - with just the handicap to protect the weaker players! And this week was no exception with the matches involving players from the top of division 1 of the league and players from the lowest division.

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Where quality shows......

 

The first match featured the BSM 4 team, captained by Andy Armstrong, A mixed team, including our top first division player, Keith Williams, and two of our division 4 players, Andy Armstrong and Keith Dudley. The visitors were the top team from division 5, Crosby High 2. A large crowd seem to have gathered to watch this match, not quite sure why? But someone suggested they were all Keith Dudley's groupies? 

When you get a player the quality of Keith Williams, even though the BSM team faced a huge handicap deficit of 124 points, there is really very little even good division 5 players can do to stop him scoring freely! And he did, wiping a significant 95 points off of the handicap deficit. This meant that Andy and Keith D still had work to do, and really very little margin for any slip up. They both featured in some very close games, but were able to win 11 out of 12 of the games they played, and the one that slipped away was by just a single point! Their contribution was enough to clear the remaining deficit, but even so the match was not safe until the very last set where the visiting No.1 Steve Jones was not able to overcome Captain Andy, leaving the home side with a 31 point winning margin. An appreciative crowd had seen a very good match, some good quality table tennis and a very satisfactory outcome for the BSM team. 

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On the left: The Crosby High 2 team of, Steve Jones, Andrew Hawkins & Peter Crichton with supporter, Tony Bramham.
On the right: The BSM 4 team of, Keith Williams, Keith Dudley and Andrew Armstrong.  

What a Wednesday! 

 

It is unfortunate that there was a much smaller crowd for Wednesday's match - that may have had something to do with certain FA Cup football on TV - because they missed a treat! A derby between two BSM teams, and both featuring players from the top two divisions of the Liverpool League, so some real quality on display throughout and thus hardly surprising that there was just 36 points between them at the start.

The 'home' side should have been an all 1st division line-up led by 1st team captain, Dermot Tierney. However at the last moment Dermot was forced into a change of line-up with Brian Crolley stepping in at the eleventh hour to fill the BSM 3 team vacancy. Brian bringing with him some valuable handicap points to reduce the deficit the BSM 3 team faced! Fellow division 1 player, Colin Turner, completed the trio. The visitors were the 'Dave's', the all 2nd division line-up led by captain Dave Stoddern, supported by Dave Noden and Dave McMahon. With these line-ups you might expect the division 1 players to win their games, but how well could they win them? And what effect would the late enforced change have on what should have been an all first division line-up? It was soon clear that the two division 1 players, Colin & Dermot, were just too strong and with Brian as fiercely competitive as ever, after 5 sets the deficit had been cleared and the points were even. With the two division 1 players still having 3 sets out of the last 4 to play, it seemed unlikely that the Dave's could hold out. Indeed, once the BSM 3 had pulled level they kept the pressure on and gradually pulled away. So that, by the end, they were clear by 45 points, a decisive win which had featured some first class table tennis.

So, the BSM 3 and BSM 4 teams take their places in the semi-finals. Maybe we shall see another derby.....??

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On the left: the BSM 6 team, 'The Dave's', Dave Noden, Dave Stoddern and Dave McMahon - all looking very relaxed ahead of the contest!
On the right: the BSM 3 team, studying the match line-up, Dermot Tierney, Colin Turner and Brian Crolley (sub).