Table Tennis report week 13 by Colin Brown
It’s not all over just yet!
Just when it seemed as if Copy Shop was destined to take both the First and Second Division titles their grip was loosened a little bit this week as both the second placed teams closed the gap in the Isle of Man Table Tennis Leagues. Copy Shop B suffered only their second defeat of the season as they went down 6-4 to second placed Foxdale B.
Copy Shop A saw their lead reduced to eight points as Ramsey A cut the arrears slightly. Ronan McDonnell and Brian Crellin were again in dominant form for Copy Shop as they defeated bottom club Travellers A 8-2. Travellers reserve Stu Douglas had a good win over Jane Coulthurst and Malcolm Cummings added one more. Travellers were two games up in the doubles but McDonnell and Crellin fought back to win in five.
Foxdale A were unlucky in several respects against second-placed Ramsey A. William Bayley picked up their only point by defeating Darren Smethurst 11-7 in the fifth but three other matches needed a decider and Foxdale lost them all. Adam Teare featured in all three marathons for Ramsey. Foxdale were two games up in the doubles but lost the next three. They suffered further bad luck when Becky Bayley injured her back in her first match and had to concede the other two.
The Strathallan v Tower A encounter was the longest of the night in any division with five needing a fifth game – Strathallan winning three. The two closest matches saw Strathallan’s Julian Briercliffe triumph 13-11 in the final game against John Callow while a fluctuating doubles saw John Callow and reserve Graham McFarlane winning it for Tower at 15-13 in the decider. Andy Patterson, Haydn McLarney and Julian Briercliffe each won two for Strathallan to see them home 6-4. It could have been much worse for Tower as they trailed 2-6 at one stage but won the last two matches.
A tremendous battle between Paul Corran and Liam Chan was the highlight of the Breakaway A v Arbory fixture. Liam won it 13-11 in the fifth but it was Breakaway who came out on top overall by 6-4. Steve O’Hare turned the tables on Liam to win in straight games but there was another five-gamer between Chris Kewley and Mike Tamarov which Mike won 11-9.
Foxdale B inflicted only the second defeat of the season on leaders Copy Shop B to win 6-4 and narrow the gap at the top, but Copy Shop still have a huge lead. Four matches went to a decider and Foxdale won all four. Closest of all was Neil Quane’s 15-13 deciding game win over Sean Drewry. Ken Mitchell, Mike Bayley and Neil Quane all won two for Foxdale and Danny Hamill did the same for Copy Shop.
Peel A were missing two regulars against Salmon River Spinners who took full advantage to record an 8-2 victory and pull them away from the relegation zone. Despite the scoreline there were still some tight matches, reserve Chris Holmes getting one on the board for Peel by beating Colin Barron 11-9 in the decider while Spinners’ Tommy Cowin came from two games down to beat Maggie Mulhern 11-8 in the final game.
Travellers C look to be bound for the Third Division after their second successive 10-0 defeat, this time at the hands of Tower B. Their doubles team almost secured a point, fighting back from two games down to square the match. However, Steve Curtis and Dave Callow denied them with an 11-8 final game win.
Travellers B and Tower C fought out a 5-5 draw but nothing went to five games and the match was over with more than half an hour to spare. Paul Callow won all his singles and for a time it looked like Tower might pull off a surprise win, but Travellers took the doubles to share the points.
Eann Mulhern was the only winner for Peel D as they lost 9-1 to their C team colleagues who are starting to put a bit of daylight between them and the chasing pack at the top of the table. Only match to go to five was Ashley Reid’s 11-8 victory over George Melvin.
Spare a thought for Marion Forrest who again won all her four games for Ramsey B but they lost 6-4 to Peel B, largely because they were playing one short and had to concede three games. Marion and Christin Maschmann kept their nerve in the doubles to take it 11-9 in the fifth.
Copy Shop C’s Kevin Drewry was another who won all his matches but still finished on the losing side as Copy Shop lost 6-4 to Breakaway B. Ben Christian took him to 11-9 in the fifth but the game of the night saw Breakaway’s Sam Callister overturning a two game deficit to beat Chris Aspden 16-14 in the decider.
Only seven matches were played in the Peel E v Fortress contest as Fortress were playing one short but, of these, five needed a decider and the other two went to four games. Fortress won the doubles 14-12 in the fifth while Pat Halliwell saw off Dom Galante 13-11, also in the fifth, but the handicap of playing one short was too great. Another long battle saw Peel’s Vishal Patel beat Karen Hassan 6-11 5-11 12-10 12-10 11-5.
Results - Division One: Copy Shop A 8 (R. McDonnell 3, B. Crellin 3, J. Coulthurst 1, doubles Travellers A 2 (S. Douglas 1, M. Cummings 1); Ramsey A 9 (M. Johnson 3, A. Teare 3, D. Smethurst 2, doubles Foxdale A 1 (W. Bayley 1); Strathallan 6 (A. Patterson 2, H. McLarney 2, J. Briercliffe 2) Tower A 4 (J. Callow 2, T. Baker 1, doubles); Breakaway A 6 (P. Corran 2, S. O’Hare 2, C. Kewley 1, doubles) Arbory 4 (L. Chan 2, M. Tamarov 2.)
Division Two: Copy Shop B 4 (D. Hamill 2, A. Davies 1, doubles) Foxdale B 6 (M. Bayley 2, K. Mitchell 2, N. Quane 2); Salmon River Spinners 8 (N. Beattie 3, T. Cowin 3, C. Barron 1, doubles) Peel A 2 (C. Holmes 1, M. Mulhern 1);Travellers C 0 Tower B 10 (S. Curtis 3, D. Callow 3, G. McFarlane 2, doubles, 1 walkover); Travellers B 5 (C. Brown 2, S. Ellis-Pearson 1, S. Mason 1, doubles) Tower C 5 (P.Callow 3, D. Callow 2.)
Division Three: Peel D 1 (E. Mulhern 1) Peel C 9 (S. Cassidy 3, C. Holmes 3, A. Reid 2, doubles); Ramsey B 4 (M. Forrest 3, doubles) Peel B 6 (A. Gutzold 1, M. Evans 1, W. Cross 1, three walkovers); Copy Shop C 4 (K. Drewry 3, doubles) Breakaway B 6 (S. Callister 2, A. Faragher 2, B. Christian 2); Peel E 7 (F. Dorling 2, V. Patel 1, D. Galante 1, 3 walkovers) Fortress 3 (P. Halliwell 2, doubles.)