Windsor Condors may have been expected to beat Walton C in Division One of the Clacton and District League – which they did 6-4 – but that’s where the predictability ended.

Walton’s Jason Gale, in only his second match of the season, beat regular player Annabelle Rodriguez 11-9, 11-9, 5-11, 3-11, 12-10. But Annabelle then enjoyed an excellent win over the impressive Derek Willis, coming back from an atrocious start to win 2-11, 0-11, 11-8, 11-9, 11-8.

But, as if to prove this was a mere blip, Willis bounced back to hammer Jim Pallett 11-6, 11-4, 11-0 – but not before Pallett had eased past Gale 11-5, 11-13, 11-9, 11-8!

Amidst the surprises, Colin Stallwood took his usual three for the Condors whilst the reliable Paul Meikle won two for Walton. And, appropriately for such a closely-contested fixture, every player picked up a point.

At the top, Nomads Panthers extended their lead with two high-scoring results over lowly-placed teams. James Denyer and Colin Webber took hat-tricks in the 9-1 win over Brotherhood B although it was 11-6 in the decider for Webber against Martin Edwards. Edwards also took Gill Locke close, going down 11-8 in the fifth. Brotherhood’s sole point came from a John Owen victory in the last match of the evening, 12-10 in the decider against Locke.

There was no Denyer in the Panthers’ line-up, nor Sam Hume in the Cougars’ team when the two Nomads sides faced each other. But Webber and Locke both recorded maximum points for the Panthers in the 8-2 win. Brian Parish made a welcome return for the Cougars, winning one and going down in five to Locke. The two closest matches involved the three reserves used, Darren Bunce playing up for the Panthers defeating Cougars’ substitute Tony Beezer 11-8 in the decider but losing 12-10 in the fifth to the Cougars’ second reserve player, Peter Giles.

There were three for Walton D’s Kevin Gowlett but Brotherhood A took the match 7-3, Alan Burgess, Dave Binns and new-signing Josh Sidki all contributing two points. Walton will feel unfortunate to have lost all three matches that went the distance, especially Paul Woolnough who took both Binns and Burgess close.

Walton A were 8-2 winners against club-mates Walton B, a repeat of their early-season meeting. Peter Burrows and John Rice stayed unbeaten. The ‘B’ team’s Gavin Price defeated Colin Dearman and, with Paul Newbould, took the doubles 11-9 in the decider against Dearman and Rice.

It was also 6-4 in the all-Windsor clash between the Eagles and the Hawks. The Eagles emerged victorious but Andy Vincent of the Hawks was the best player on the night, his three including an 8-11, 11-13, 11-9, 12-10, 11-8 victory over Phil Smith. Smith and Fred Button took a couple each for the winners.

But the biggest cheer of the week came from the St Osyth Road venue of Brotherhood D who chalked up their first win of the season – although they were helped when their opponents, Nomads Lions, were forced to field a guest player and automatically conceded three points. John Hatley played well for the Lions to stay undefeated but, in what turned out to be a crucial doubles, Russell Hillier and Shaun Beckham beat Hatley and John Fenton 11-9 in the decider.

In Division Two Nomads Ocelots suffered their worst result of the season, losing 8-2 to Brotherhood C, a reverse of the score from their first meeting of the season. Kevin Pryor and Adam Wilkin both won three whilst reserve Peter Bloomfield excelled to take two. Daryl Lott was the Ocelots’ best player, beating Bloomfield, then narrowly losing 12-10 in the fifth to Pryor before sharing an unexpected doubles win with Doug Green against Pryor and Wilkin.

Lawford took the last two matches of the evening to snatch a 6-4 win against Brotherhood F. In-form Richard Spence was unbeaten for the winners whilst Elliott Attrill and Mark Beckham took two each for the losers.

There was a similar scenario in the Windsor Harriers v Nomads Jaguars encounter, the Harriers winning matches nine and ten to clinch the tie 6-4. But Harry Hawkes of the Jaguars was the star player on the night, remaining unbeaten.

Three each from Tricia Salter and Adam Jackson saw Windsor Owls beat Windsor Magpies 8-2 for a second time this season. Dave Sweetland and John Plummer each took a point for the losers and arguably might have picked up more, Plummer going down 9-11, 12-10, 11-6, 6-11, 5-11 to Jackson and Sweetland losing 7-11, 11-6, 5-11, 15-13, 9-11 to Salter.

Nomads Tigers recorded a 9-1 victory against Brotherhood J to leap-frog them in the table. Darren Bunce and Tony Beezer won three each and Caroline North two. Kelvin Olano took Brotherhood’s consolation point whilst Gracie Edwards will feel unlucky to have gone down 13-11 in the fifth to North.

In Division Three Brotherhood E proved too good for lowly Nomads Wildcats, winning 9-1. Andrew Cawley’s victory over Gary Bayliss was the only blot on their copybook.

Gerald Batt won all three, and Brian Baines and David Wilkin a couple each, in Brotherhood H’s 7-3 success against a new-look Nomads Leopards. Dan Malinowski returned to local table tennis for the Leopards to win two and share an 11-8 in the decider doubles success with Harry Beezer against Batt and Wilkin.

A more familiar Leopards’ trio lined up against Windsor Ospreys and won 7-3, Harry Beezer’s treble including a fine 11-9 in the fifth victory over Lucy Burton. The much-improved Woody Fitzpatrick won twice for the losers, defeating both Roger McNaughton and Norman Jacobs.

Brotherhood G lost ground at the top, going down 6-4 to Nomads Lynx. None of the matches was extended to a deciding set and no-one stayed undefeated. Brian Friday and Kevin Hume won two each for Nomads, Allan Fryer and Lee Allen a pair apiece for Brotherhood.

Brotherhood L and Nomads Pumas are separated by only two points in the table and therefore it was little surprise that, for a second time this season, they shared the spoils. Again, no player was unbeaten. There were two wins for Brotherhood’s Morgan Harvey and Jonathan Found, and for Nomads’ Alan Dockerill and John Bowers. The pivotal match of the evening turned out to be the first one played, Bowers defeating Harvey 11-9 in the decider.

It was good to see Windsor Kites’ Rachel Simson return to action after an absence through injury but she was unable to prevent Windsor Penguins winning 9-1. Sue Chillingworth and Mike Monschau took trebles for the Penguins whilst Chris Simson, who took the Kites’ one point by beating Jackie Bunce, also came close against Chillingworth before losing 11-9 in the decider.

Malcolm Caley was both literally and actually the odd-man-out when Walton E entertained Windsor Swallows where five women players were in action. The more experienced Swallows took the honours 10-0 although Lynette Sparks played well against Sheila Howe before going down in the fifth set.

* The Handicapped Singles Tournament takes place on Saturday 22nd February at the Coastal Academy Sports Hall, with play starting at 9.30 am. Entries can be made on-line or by post to Tony Oswick. Entry will be limited to forty-five players. The closing date is Monday 17th February. Full details are with Team Secretaries and are also on the League’s website.

Division 1

Brotherhood B 1 Nomads Panthers 9;
Walton D 3 Brotherhood A 7;
Nomads Panthers 8 Nomads Cougars 2;
Walton A 8 Walton B 2;
Windsor Condors 6 Walton C 4
Windsor Eagles 6 Windsor Hawks 4;
Brotherhood D 6 Nomads Lions 4.

Division 2
Nomads Ocelots 2 Brotherhood C 8;
Lawford 6 Brotherhood F 4;
Nomads Jaguars 4 Windsor Harriers 6;
Brotherhood J 1 Nomads Tigers 9;
Windsor Magpies 2 Windsor Owls 8.

Division 3
Nomads Wildcats 1 Brotherhood E 9;
Nomads Leopards 7 Windsor Ospreys 3;
Brotherhood H 7 Nomads Leopards 3;
Nomads Lynx 6 Brotherhood G 4;
Windsor Kites 1 Windsor Penguins 9;
Brotherhood L 5 Nomads Pumas 5;
Walton E 0 Windsor Swallows 10.

To view the full tables click here

Tony Oswick (January 27, 2014)