In Division Two last week the top two teams met for the second time this season. Clifton C held the advantage of one game in hand and two points ahead of Phoenix C. This was Phoenix’ chance to close the gap. Stuart Element started the night off by sending Richard Horsfield packing with a straight sets win. Terry Curran and Jim Pugh were not going to let the match slip easily and both won in four against Alan Joyce and Mohammed Arshid. Element held his nerve to draw the match level at two all. This two-ing and fro-ing continued until the match stood at 4 – 4. Element’s turn again to step up to the plate. This time against Pugh. Element continued his run of form completing his hat-trick. So 5 – 4 to Phoenix and one point closer to the leaders. Could they take the second point and win the match. Jim Pugh versus Alan Joyce. Two very experienced players battled it out but Joyce was not to be deterred and won in three straight games to give Phoenix a vital win if they are to take the title. So Clifton still have the advantage but now only one game in hand and the have to play each other once more later in the season!!
An all Scorpions match also in Division Two occurred this week between the E team and the C team. Both teams trying to keep clear of relegation, this one went to form as the C team came out easy 9 – 1 winners. Michael Taylor got them off to a flying start seeing off Ali Nadzafaleus in three straight games. Chris Johnson and Ade Truman did the same against Stuart Foers and Pete Smith to give the C team a 3 – 0 advantage. Nadzafaleus managed to prevent a clean sweep by defeating Johnson in the fourth match but the rest went easily to the home team.
In a match re-arranged from a previous week, Scorpions G, challenging for the Division Three title, met Phoenix E. The match was being played at the Phoenix Sports and Social Club at Brinsworth. Bob Vickers went on first against Phil Richardson. Richardson with his awkward style of play managed to pinch the set in the fifth game. Eric Twigg then was seen off by Dennis E. Green and new signing Glynn Ward also sent Ken Shemwell packing. There were no easy victories in this match with most of them going to at least the fourth game, but all bar one went to Scorpions. The home team had to wait to the very last match of the night to get on the scorecard when Vickers managed to overcome Green in three straight games. That leaves Scorpions still just one point behind division leaders Phoenix F.
This weekend sees the next round of the National Junior and Cadet Leagues being run at Thrybergh Sports Centre. Some of the top young players from the region will come to Rotherham to contest the various divisions. And, of course, Rotherham will have its share of players representing the town. Let’s hope they can do as well as on previous occasions. Results and reports to follow next week.