Some players’ styles are ideally suited to handicaps as they tend to give very little away, which may not help in a level match as their opponent can be enterprising from the start. When their opposition begin a few points behind, however, tactics take on a new meaning as players rein in their natural exuberance trying to make sure of a few early points, to their cost.

John Genovese won the Phil Reid Memorial Trophy having been runner-up last season, and his game is eminently suited with his quirky retrieving style and “funny” rubbers, beating Dave Small, who was receiving 2, 2-1 (21-11, 13-21, 23-21) in the final. That deciding game was a humdinger which might have gone either way.

Organiser, Andy Wright, did well to complete the group stages of the finals as, initially, one of the players failed to materialise for while another player in the other group became ill and had to retire. In the end it worked out well with Genovese winning his group 3-0. Crucial was his match against Steve Pratt, which he won in two but both were at deuce, and then a 2-1 victory over Harry White sealed it.

The other group was particularly close as no-one won three or lost three with Small and Peter Wilson finishing 2-1 in sets and Small taking their particular encounter deceptively easily to progress through on count back.

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The Daytime Ladder League began its second half with Andy Searle consolidating his position at the top of the chart by winning all four of his matches 2-1 for a plus four return. Alan Mould came into the fold for the first time and spearheaded the second group with Tim Cawston, both with plus 2 and the latter moves into the top half.

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With one or two scores a little slow coming through as the second half of the Leicester & District league gets under way I make no apology for featuring the first week of the bottom section – Division Five – where all five results resulted 6-4. In every match there was one maximum, not always on the winning side.

Leaders, Lutterworth Rotary, maintained what seems to be a curse on the chart-toppers as they lost to Syston Casuals IV despite three from Mike Eastell. Syston had greater depth with Scott Morris and Nick Bishop two each and Tony Monteiro one, the first two the doubles.

At the other end of the scale the young Knighton Park XII scored their first legitimate win over Electricity VI (their other was a default against the same side) despite, yet again, a maximum from the losers, this time Dave Silvester. Dylan Parmar-Saville and Maya Dehnen both took two and Ella Parmar-Saville one for KP.

Goons II maintained their challenge near the top but only just against lowly Abbots Road V when Steve Harrison this time spearheaded a win undefeated, backed by two from Scott Robinson. For Abbots, Pat Evans scored a useful double.

A terrific maximum by Simon Taylor helped Knighton Park XI to success over Winstanley Wizards II which included a three-straight victory over Dan Andrews who has been taking all before him lately. One each from John Murray and Aga Hirt, the latter winning the doubles with Taylor, while Ken Oram scored a creditable two for the Wizards.

The other result was the fifth by 6-4 when Desford Village IV defeated Nomads V, Luke Blair with the maximum in this with two from Gillian Wisdish. Tony Burns won two for Nomads.