After a run of close games in its early weeks, division one of the Braintree Table Tennis League has suddenly opened up with a week of decisive wins.
Leaders Liberal A have signed Chelmsford League player Ryan Gooday and he joined Scott Dowsett and reserve Mike Johnston in taking all ten sets from Rayne C.
Rayne A jumped into second place with a 9-1 win over Netts B where James Hicks’ win over Jon Hill prevented them matching Liberal’s score.
Rayne D moved up to fourth with an 8-2 win over Sible Hedingham, in which Brian Riedling and Adam Buxton were unbeaten.
And Liberal B scored their first win of the season, 9-1 over Black Notley A, where the doubles was the one to get away.
Notley C regained the lead from their own B team in division two with a 10-0 win over Felsted RBL B while the B team were held to a draw by Rayne E.
Steve Siggs and Dave Punt will be pleased with their wins over Gordon Fairchild, who had won 16 out of 18 before the match.
Sean Clift, however, held the Notley team together with his three singles.
One point separated Nomads and Liberal C in third and fourth places, and that is how it stayed after they played each other. Ken Lewis, in only his second match of the season, took his three singles for Nomads.
Hedingham Lions, bottom of the table last year but kept up after Notley withdrew a team from the division, are making a determined effort to avoid that happening again.
They may be the only team in the division to have lost all their matches, but they have picked up enough points to sit in eighth place.
Typical was their 6-4 defeat at Felsted A, where Nick Readhead won two and Adam Purslow and Steve Willis one each.
A 6-4 win in Felsted B’s earlier rearranged match with Rayne F helped them stay off the bottom but Notley D were less successful. They tumbled 8-2 to Rayne F and are currently staring up at the rest of the division.
Paul Mitchell was unbeaten in that one.
Rayne G’s record took another dent in division three as for the second week running they came up against a team with a 100 per cent win record.
Notley E had only two players, but that was enough for them to register a 6-4 win.
Jill Canning repeated last season’s win over Tony Stredder – she was one of only four people to beat him in 71 sets then – but found Charles Wilkinson a different proposition.
With Hannah Pitt taking all three singles, as she has done in every match this season, that was Rayne G’s only success.
Felsted C moved one point closer with a 7-3 win over Notley F, where Matthew Laws was unbeaten, while Rayne H held on to fourth place after an unbeaten evening from Shirley Carroll helped them to a 7-3 win over Rayne I.
Netts D recorded their first win of the season, also by 7-3, although they were helped by Notley G fielding an ineligible player. Max Plumridge won two out of two.