Herald Report December 8th 2011


Henley A played their first home match for a month when they took on Royal Mail. Fortunately they are now able to switch on the heating without tripping the system and so the cold conditions no longer presented a problem for the players. Last time out against the Postmen the Villagers were beaten despite a perfect performance from Mike Evetts. On this occasion Evetts was again untroubled, although he had to overcome an early disadvantage against Malcolm Heritage. However the big difference was that his team provided solid support with Geoff Shephard gaining two successes. Peter Quince added another, and was also unlucky not to acquire the scalp of Heritage, after fighting back from two games down to force a decider, only to fall at the last hurdle. Nello Mauri was the best performing visitor notching a brace but he couldn't prevent his team finishing on the wrong end of a 7 - 3 scoreline.

When table-topping Shottery A entertained Henley A the fixture got off to a cracking start as Gary Stewart took on Evetts. After finding himself a game down Evetts fought back to secure the next two, both at deuce, only to lose the fourth in similar fashion. Stewart was then able to raise his performance to clinch the decider before going on to complete a treble. Fortunately Evetts didn't end the evening empty-handed as he gained victory over Stephen Foster, while Quince also got on the card by overcoming Graham Poole. However that was all the visitors were able to muster as the match ended 8 - 2. Both Foster and Poole finished with braces but, more importantly after Stewart's opener, avoided further marathons thus enabling the team to enjoy their customary celebration drink.

After Henley A's defeat their captain Geoff Shephard was presumably talent spotting when he attended the next outing of the club's second string. He would have been impressed by the performance of Rob McCluskey who battled hard to put in an unbeaten singles performance. Gordon Trinder was involved in the only two sets of the evening to go the distance. He was two games to the good against Peter Florence before the Farmer called upon hidden reserves to take their encounter to a successful decider. Trinder then battled back from 6 - 10 down to take the early advantage over Peter Bruce-Moore only to eventually lose over the distance. Newcomer Jo Coulter continues to improve but was unable to gain her first success as FISSC went home 3 - 7 to the good.

Author: via Stratford-upon-Avon Table Tennis League
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