Shottery C and Ashorne both earned hard fought 6-4 victories against higher placed opposition. When his team took on Henley A Shottery’s in-form captain Rob Poole led by example finishing with a treble without the loss of a game. Ken Southwell added two successes, although he had to overturn an initial deficit to defeat Geoff Shepherd in the decider. The Henley player was also involved in the pivotal match of the night against the rapidly improving David Lincoln-Lewis. Shepherd took a two game lead, and looked to have their clash sewn up, before Lincoln-Lewis turned the tables to win over the distance.
Don McAdam notched a brace for Henley with Peter Quince gaining their third singles but, despite their team also clinching the doubles, it was not enough to avoid a surprise defeat.
Ashorne put in an equally credible display against Royal Mail. Nello Mauri delivered a perfect performance for the Postmen but all the other singles went the way of the village team with Mark Jones, John Hunt and George Mudie earning braces. The final match of the fixture proved critical as Mudie overturned a two game deficit against Wilf Chan to ensure his team went home victorious..
The first semi-final of the knockout cup produced a nail-biting finish. Royal Mail entertained Henley B and acquired a total of 361 points after open play. The visitors chalked up 250, with Dave Hatcher earning a particularly praiseworthy 90 and receiving solid support from Robert McCluskey and Gordon Trinder. The handicap adjustments amounted to 135 and 246 respectively ensuring that both teams finished on 496. The Postmen graciously conceded defeat in the knowledge that, in such a situation, the rules state the advantage lies with the away team.
Just seven days after inflicting a whitewash upon FISSC in the league it came as no surprise that Shottery B claimed every game against them in the other semi-final thereby earning a maximum 378 points. The Farmers could only muster a total of 168 and, even after the handicap had been applied, were still 88 points short of the required figure. Gareth Hepworth, Tim Fell and Tony Remes are therefore on course to retain the trophy they won last year.
The final is due to be played at the end of the season during the week commencing 17th March with the draw providing home advantage to Henley B.