This week has seen six out of eight of the Club’s teams in the Liverpool & District Table Tennis League involved in derby matches, and what matches they have proved to be.
Of the remaining two teams, the 1st Team had no match, and the E Team in Division 4 continued their positive start to the season with an 8:2 away victory against Sefton Park C. A good win in quite difficult conditions.
The week started with the Division 3 encounter between Dave Noden’s D Team and Brian Crolley’s C Team. Brian was forced into a makeshift team for this important match, with Les Dodd coming up from Div 4 to replace Mal Kent and Ray Hibbs playing his debut match for the Club in place of Andy Cheung who was attending his son’s graduation ceremony in London. In the event it was just the two newcomers Les & Ray who won singles for the C Team, each beating Dave Noden. Darren Taylor and Ted Cramsie proved to be far too strong for Brian’s boys giving the lower ranked D team a fairly comfortable 7:3 victory. If Dave’s team could improve their doubles they might be doing even better! And by the way, Dave made the back page of the local newspaper this week for his concentration at table tennis! Below is a team picture for the G Team, and also how Dave appeared on the back page of the Visiter!
Dave Noden makes it to the back page of the Visiter - what a face of concentration!
Next up, on Tuesday, was the Division 2 clash between Ricky Brown’s A team and Dave Stoddern’s B team. Both teams were at full strength for this match and the odds certainly seemed to be on the A side who currently stand at 2nd in the division. The match proved to be a real battle with 5 sets going the distance. Man of the Match was definitely Barry Davis for the B Team, who proved his quality taking all three singles, narrowly overcoming the hard hitting Fred 8:11 in the 5th. Barry also shared in a tremendous doubles win with Dave over Ricky & Fred again 5:11 in the 5th. Even more amazingly was Dave’s 3 straight win over Fred and a 6:11 win in the 5th for Colin over Ian. A shock result with the B Team winning out 4:6.
The final encounter of the week was on Friday with the Division 5 clash between Mary Delamere’s F Team hosting Des Logan’s G Team. With Julia Cornish, who has been the best performer so far for the F Team, unavailable and also team captain Mary absent for the match, it looked as if the F Team might be struggling for players. However, Keith Dudley was able to step in to captain the team and was joined by Tony Bramham, who up to now has struggled to make his mark on Div 5, Tommy Bell and Leslie Blanchard. Boldly, Des included 11 year old Finn Mason in his line up for his debut league match together with the ever youthful Billy Clayton and Barbara Alcock returning after injury. Looking at the two line ups this match had ‘draw’ written all over it. Des continued his daring by calling on the young Finn for the opening set of the match, and what a start he made overcoming Leslie 3:1, he later joined Billy for the doubles and took a 3 straight win against the odds over Keith & Leslie. On her return Barbara took 2 singles for the G Team, including a very good win over the luckless Tony. But man of the match has to go to Tom Bell, first he stopped young Finn, then faced Club President Billy in the final match of the night, having already won in the doubles with Tony. With the score finely balanced at 5:4 in favour of the G Team it looked as if Bill should pull it out of the bag for the draw. But playing some of his best table tennis of the night Tom raced into a 2 game lead. Bill fought back to take the third, and looked as if he was going to take it to a deciding game. But Tom hung on and edged the 4th 12:10 to make it game. Set and match to the F Team 6:4. Great match. And a great week of derby encounters.