Burton take an early lead
At the end of the first week of the new table tennis season, Burton A, with a comfortable 8-2 victory over Natland B, are the early pace setters in Division 1. 3 wins apiece from Peter Baxendale and newcomer Mike Armishaw along with 2 from Fran Currie propelled Burton to the top of Division 1. Only a magnificent comeback by Louise Thompson, from 2-0 down against arch rival Fran Currie, prevented Burton from capturing all 9 singles matches. Thompson then combined with Bernard Pickthall for a shock win over Peter Baxendale and Fran Currie in the doubles.
In Division 2, pre-season promotion favourites, Kirkby Stephen A and Dallam B, fought out an exciting 5-5 draw. Star of the show was Paul Gosling, with 3 wins in the singles, but Kirkby Stephen fought back with 2 singles wins apiece from Dave White and Peter George, the pair then combining to take the doubles and tie the match at 5-5. Burton D went to the top of Division 2 with a 9-1 win over the youngsters of Natland E. Top performers for Burton were Martin Wakelin and debutant Bob Quick, with 3 wins each. Natland’s talented youngsters, Archie Catnach, Devun Whitehead and Daniel Holder, newly promoted from Division 3, fought hard and could consider themselves slightly unfortunate to lose a keenly contested match 9-1.
In the only fixture in Division 3, Grayrigg edged out Dent by 19 points to 18. A hat-trick of wins by Steve Hawley could not prevent Dent from going down by the narrowest of margins.
Meanwhile, Natland hosted the first of 4 coaching days for League players. The excellent sessions, run by Graham Coupe, head coach at the Garstang Regional Training Centre, was attended by 20 of the League’s players.