There was a flurry of excitement in Division One of the Leicester & District League when it was learned that a young lady from China would be joining the Unicorn second team. Already Yu Yu Gong has played in three matches and made her mark.
First up were Thringstone with Gong, having not touched a bat for four years, had a few minutes’ knock up half an hour before the match and promptly won two including the scalp of Maurice Newman, but not finding a way around David Arrowsmith in a 7-3 victory.
Even better followed when this team beat their own first team who are defending champions and topping the chart at the moment. Gong this time won three in a remarkable 9-1 victory including beating Jared Patel. For the victorious second team Luke Greenfield also took three, Craig Witheford two, Jared only taking one for the first.
This week it was the turn of Knighton Park’s first team when their star performer, Chris Rogers, lost all three for a once in a blue moon return. Hero for KP was Jack Rogers who defeated Gong in five. Finding himself 9-10 down in the fifth Rogers saved six match points in a row before squeezing home 17-15, winning two overall as Unicorn took the match 7-3. Gong won two, Witheford a cracking maximum and Greenfield one.
This makes a difference to both the chart and the averages with Unicorn firsts just one point ahead of their own seconds and Knighton Park a further two points adrift. The averages show a number of players in heap around 90%.
Another very good performance came from Arnesby’s Ian Brown who took all three for his team to lead the way to a tight 5-5 draw against AW Wolvey, with Darren Bramhall and Matthew Horrocks recording one apiece. John Fuller won two for Wolvey, Nigel Metcalf and Gareth Edmunds one each for all six to come away with something, and then Fuller and Metcalf grabbed the doubles for the share.
Desford Village first team surely look destined for promotion from Division Two this term having just missed out last time. They defeated one of their nearest rivals, Holwell Sports II, by 7-3 when Tony Smith won all three Phil Pagett two and Neil Matthams one. For Holwell Dave Roche won two as they drop to fifth.
Abbots Road are second after beating Syston Casuals II 8-2, helped in no small way with the latter having two players and only John Szostak able to win any. For Abbots Vishall Parmar was undefeated while Fahed Sacoor and Chetan Tailor each won one of their two.
Desford Village’s second team are trying to make it a one-two, defeating Arnesby II 8-2 for whom Rhys Emery maintain current form by taking the two. He could not find a way past Matthew Briggs, however, who notched all three and supported well by Paul Bumpus and Kevin Parker both taking two.
Regent Sports fell to sixth after going down to Electricity III who produced an excellent team effort when Russ Pettitt and Steve White both recorded a brace and Andy Wright, playing up, took one. Pettitt and White finished by taking the doubles 12-10 in the fifth to make sure of full points.
A significant result in Division Three saw second placed team, Abbots Road II, defeat leaders, Knighton Park VII, by 7-3 when Hardik Patel and Richard Lee both recorded maximums and the doubles to bring the points difference to four. Full marks to the Park, who did not contemplate a postponement despite losing their top of the averages star, Amardeep Gudela, for two matches. Mike Lapworth, Martin Pember and Simon Aldis all won one for KP.
Meanwhile Winstanley Wizards were edging ever closer towards the top by defeating Electricity V 7-3 with Jack Kermode in good form with three, Dave Seeds and Mick Box two apiece.
The Park’s fifth team lost an opportunity to maintain parity with Abbots when they drew 5- 5 with Unicorn IV, despite three from Ruben Dehnen.