Wingfield C’s stalwarts turned up to Heavitree on a rainy Spring evening in March, determined to put their combined age, wisdom, experience and talent to good use and teach the young whippersnappers of the runaway champions, Okehampton B, a thing or two about the sublime and subtle arts of table tennis. To a great extent, they achieved their objective, and all that impeded them was the fact that the young starlets, ably aided and abetted by the rather more mature Steve Tyler, play an entirely different game from that of their elder statesmen. It was very much to the credit of the Heavitree Heavies that they manifestly stuck to their task throughout the evening. The only problem was the scorecard, but that, of course, was of minor significance.
Perhaps the match was best summed up by the eighth set of the evening, the middle doubles. Holland and Wilshire surprisingly stormed into commanding two-set lead and seemingly had the set completely under control. At that point, it was as if Okehampton, in the guise of the silver-haired Tyler and the diminutive Luke Bennett, flicked a switch marked “near-perfection” and from that point went on to concede a mere seven points in the following two legs, and made their eventual victory even more compelling with their 11-0 final leg to send the Heavies scuttling away with tails firmly between legs. Mari Baldwin was perhaps the player most inconvenienced on the evening by the Heavies, Landberger taking her to 18-20 in the third leg, but such inconvenience never once bordered on actually being troubled.
The home side collected a total of seven legs over the evening, each of the home veterans picking up a leg along the way from their esteemed opposition, but the starlets of the future served only to remind the has-beens that in truth, they were really never-weres !