The cream rose to the top in Round Three of the Clacton and District League’s Handicap Knock-Out Cup with pride of place going to the Walton club whose four top-flight teams all made it to through to the quarter-finals.

Three of the Walton sides had convincing wins over Division Three opposition.

Nomads Pumas opened proceedings against Walton A with an encouraging doubles victory from John Bowers and Lionel Goddard. But this was to be their only success of the evening, Peter Burrows staying unbeaten for Walton A who are now the highest-ranked team left in the competition.

It was also 5-1 for Walton B against Brotherhood E but the score-line concealed a far tougher match. Walton’s Paul Newbould and John Rankin (-6) took the opening doubles 11-9, 8-11, 12-10, 3-11, 12-10 against Duncan Dunne and Tony Edmonds (+1) whilst Gavin Price (-8) edged the first singles 14-12, 4-11, 3-11, 12-10, 11-8 against Rodney Betts (+1).

Windsor Ospreys have enjoyed an unexpected run of Cup glory but any lingering hopes of continued success were dashed by Walton D who ran out 5-2 winners. Walton skipper Paul Woolnough was undefeated.

Walton C faced durable Division Two opposition in Nomads Ocelots who put up stern resistance before conceding defeat 5-3. At 2-all the match was in the balance but Derek Willis and Mark Gale (-5) scraped the second doubles 5-11, 9-11, 11-9, 13-11, 11-9 against John Hockley and Andy North (+1) and, from there, the ‘C’ team were never headed. Willis stayed unbeaten on the night.

The closest tie of the Round was the all-First Division clash which saw Windsor Eagles oust Divisional pace-setters Nomads Panthers 5-3 despite an unbeaten performance from Nomads’ number one James Denyer. Match six ultimately proved pivotal, Windsor’s Gary Cattermole (-1) narrowly defeating Gill Locke (+1) 7-11, 6-11, 15-13, 11-8, 11-9, a win that gave the Eagles an important 4-2 lead rather than allowing the Panthers to level at 3-all.

The only other all-Division One tie saw Windsor Hawks overcome Brotherhood B 5-1, Andy Vincent and Ian Fielder unbeaten. Brotherhood’s sole point was a win for Martin Edwards (+1) against Felipe Rodriguez (-1) 13-11, 11-6, 22-20.

Cup-holders Nomads Cougars were the seventh top-flight side to make it to the last eight, defeating Brotherhood H 5-1 and thus ending Division Three’s interest in this year’s competition. The opening two encounters were both narrowly decided in favour of the Cougars, Colin Beaumont and Brian Parish (-8) beating Gerald Batt and Brian Baines (+1) 11-9, 11-8, 5-11, 1-11, 11-4 in the doubles, and Sam Hume (-8) scraping past Graham Parkes (+2) 11-9, 4-11, 11-7, 7-11, 11-9 in the opening singles. Beaumont was the only player to stay undefeated in the tie.

Lawford v Brotherhood J was the only all-Division Two clash and Brotherhood’s 5-1 success means they are now the only side outside the top-flight, as well as the sole representative of the Brotherhood club, left in the competition. Once again the opening two matches proved critical, Kelvin Olano and Tom Wilkin (+1) edging past John Colvin and Ian Sherwood (-1) 8-11, 12-14, 11-9, 11-7, 11-9, and Tom Burton (+1) just getting the better of Richard Spence (-5) 13-11 in the decider.

* In Division Two of the League the big match saw leaders Windsor Kestrels overcome the challenge of second-placed Windsor Ravens, winning 7-3. There were hat-tricks for Graham Bunce and Dave Martin who both inflicted rare defeats on Gary Stallwood although it was a narrow 13-11 in the fifth for Martin against Stallwood. John Harvey of the Ravens was involved in a close match against Bob Sawyer, edging victory 12-10 in the decider. It was the Ravens’ first defeat of the season.

Nomads Jaguars emerged unexpected 7-3 winners against Nomads Tigers, in-form Harry Hawkes taking a third maximum in as many weeks. He was given solid support by Mike Hillier, who won two, and Mike Vilka, who took one. Darren Bunce of the Tigers unexpectedly left the match pointless.

In Division Three there were trebles for Alan Dockerill and Lionel Goddard as Nomads Pumas beat Windsor Swallows 9-1. Sheila Howe took the Swallows’ point with a win over John Houghton and was also involved in an energy-sapping match against Dockerill, the Pumas’ player eventually winning 11-3, 10-12, 25-23, 11-4.

Walton E ended a run of fourteen consecutive defeats by sharing the spoils with Nomads Leopards. In an excellent Walton performance, there were two each for Lynette Sparks and, on debut, Rivhu Khan, with Toni Hayhow-Khan picking up one. Jordan Blanche-Price took a maximum for the Leopards. Four of the individual matches went the distance, the closest seeing Blanche-Price beat Rivhu Khan 11-9, 19-17, 7-11, 14-16, 11-5 and Lynette Sparks defeat Harry Beezer 1-11, 11-5, 7-11, 14-12, 13-11.

* The Handicapped Singles Tournament takes place on Saturday 22nd February at the Coastal Academy Sports Hall with play starting at 9.30 am. This year the Tournament will be run with the initial round being played in groups of four or five players to guarantee every player at least three matches. The closing date for entries, which will be limited to 45, is Monday 17th February.

Handicap Knock-Out Cup : Round 3
Nomads Ocelots 3 Walton C 5;
Lawford 1 Brotherhood J 5;
Walton D 5 Windsor Ospreys 2;
Nomads Panthers 3 Windsor Eagles 5;
Brotherhood E 5 Walton B 1;
Windsor Hawks 5 Brotherhood B 1;
Nomads Pumas 1 Walton A 5;
Brotherhood H 1 Nomads Cougars 5.

Division 2
Nomads Tigers 0 Windsor Kestrels 10;
Brotherhood F 10 Windsor Magpies 0;
Nomads Tigers 3 Nomads Jaguars 7;
Windsor Ravens 3 Windsor Kestrels 7.

Division 3
Nomads Leopards 5 Walton E 5;
Windsor Swallows 1 Nomads Pumas 9.

To view the full tables click here

Tony Oswick (February 22, 2014)