There were no Isle of Man Table Tennis league matches this week as the scene switched to individual competitions - notably the top 12 events for seniors and juniors followed by the divisional championships.
As the name implies the top 12 contests are open to the seniors and juniors with the best rankings at the halfway point in the season. The senior top 12 was won by the favourite Ronan McDonnell from Copy Shop who had a scare in the group stages when he lost to Breakaway's Paul Corran in five games. Fate was to decree that they then both progressed to the final where, this time, Ronan turned the tables to win 11/8, 11/9, 11/8.
In the semi-finals Ronan defeated Breakaway's Malcolm Cummings in four games while Paul got the better of his Breakaway team mate Mark Johnson in three. So Breakaway claimed the second, third and fourth places in the competition - behind Ronan - in the form of Paul Corran, Malcolm Cummings and Mark Johnson. Fifth place went to Andrew Horne of Strathallan with Mike Tamarov of Arbory 6th. Ronan thus wins the Barry Callister Memorial Trophy.
Copy Shop completed the individual double when Sean Drewry took the junior top 12 crown defeating Hadyn McLarney of Strathallan in the final. Aaron Faragher of Breakaway came back from two games to one down to defeat Copy Shop's Pedro Cardoso in five games in the play-off for third and fourth positions. Fifth was Keeran Chan of Copy Shop and sixth Wael Kassim of SureStrike Ramsey.
Winner Sean Drewry became the first recipient of the Malcolm Looker Memorial Trophy presented in memory of the long-time table tennis player, administrator and coach who died last year.
Not to be outdone, Sean Drewry's father Kevin made it a family double for the week when he won the Division Three divisional championship. Kevin was the experienced player in the semi-finals where he was joined by three of the Island's up and coming youngsters. In the semis Kevin dropped a game before seeing off the challenge from Harry Walters while the other match saw a tremendous battle between Juan Moore of Travellers and Calvin Koske of SureStrike Ramsey which Juan won 14/12 in the decider. He could make little impression on Kevin in the final, however, and the latter took the title in straight games. The losing quarter-finalists who all did themselves proud were Nathan Evans, David Buck, Sasha Thomas and Steve Walters.
The Division One and Two competitions were played through to the quarter-final stages, or just beyond in one case, and the final rounds will take place over the next few weeks. The line-up for the Division One quarters sees defending champion Ronan McDonnell up against Mike Tamarov, Mark Johnson against Sean Drewry, Brian Crellin versus Julian Briercliffe while Malcolm Cummings takes on Jason Quirk.
In the Division Two event Malcolm Lambert and Keeran Chan (both from Copy Shop) have already reached the semi-finals while the other two quarter-finals still have to be played. There is an all-Peel clash in the first with Les Wilson and Malcolm Lewis facing each other with the second quarter final pitting Adam Davies of Copy Shop against Rhys Yardley of SureStrike Ramsey.
League action resumes this week and I'll be back next Saturday with the latest results as the three divisions enter the home stretch of the season.