writes Peter Florence
With Colebridge Pasties not in action Snitterfield took the opportunity to close the gap at the top of Division 1 when they travelled to their old rivals Shottery A. Proceedings opened with the clash of the two captains where the hosts’ Gary Stewart gave his team an early advantage by overcoming John Price. This was followed by the evening’s only two five set encounters where Snitterfield turned the tide in their favour by overturning initial deficits in each. Alan Cotton and Clive Irwin secured the doubles, after which Irwin remained on the table and narrowly edged home against Stephen Foster. Irwin subsequently lost out to Stewart, but otherwise the contests all went the visitors’ way with something to spare. The evening culminated in a thrilling encounter between Stewart and Alan Cotton, where the latter narrowly took the honours to complete an excellent treble. With Price and Irwin each chalking up two successes Snitterfield ran out worthy 8-2 winners.
Honours were even between Colebridge Bulldogs and JLM Cavaliers. Steve Cull maintained his good form for Cavaliers by registering a treble without conceding a set. Joe Cull and Dave Bevington added further wins, although the latter surrendered a two set lead against John Swinburne before finally clinching the game 12-10 in the decider. Dean Hicks and Mahroof Hussain each recorded braces for Bulldogs, as well as combining to claim the crucial doubles against the two Culls.
In Division 2 Henley A were 3-2 up at the break against their own B team but, when play recommenced, they were unable to add to their haul. Richard Grover produced an unbeaten performance for the second string, although he was another to let slip a two set advantage before securing the decider when he took on Geoff Shephard. Andy Rowland added a brace, as well as the doubles with Grover, with Tony Seymour also getting on the card. Nigel Payne contributed two of the A team’s successes and Shephard added their third.
JLM Troopers also won 7-3 when they entertained Veterans. Jim Clarke and Piotr Penczkowski both notched trebles, although the latter earned four points less than Brain Marston over the course of their five sets. George Clarke gained Troopers’ seventh point but lost out in straight sets to both Marston and Peter Rodwell. In the final contest of the evening the two Veterans earned some consolation for their earlier singles defeats by combining to get the better of Jim Clarke and Penczkowski over the full distance in the doubles.