There was no change to the leader board in round six of the Senior British League.
The leading contenders – Barrow, Drumchapel Glasgow and Fusion all won. Drumchapel Glasgow were the most impressive and they beat Westfield 7-1. England no. 57 Lewis Gray picked up Westfield’s victory with what must be a contender for the win of the weekend – a superb 11-9, 12-10, 9-11, 8-11, 11-7 success against England no. 14 Terry Young. Terry was also given a very hard examination by Richard Andrews but he prevailed 13-11, 13-15, 7-11, 11-9, 11-8. Ryan Jenkins, Gareth Herbert and Stephen Jenkins all stayed undefeated.
Barrow stay top, courtesy of their 6-2 win over DHS Greenhouse Progress I, and they will be relieved with the final outcome. Tied at 2-2 they had to pull out all the stops in the second half. Gavin Rumgay felt the full force of Po Huang Chen’s forehand as Po Huang ran away with the first game. Gavin fought back with venom (that almost goes without saying when he is involved ) but it wasn’t his day. Po Huang was in charge this time and he won 11-1, 6-11, 12-10, 11-6. With Jason Sugrue beating Scott Crawford 11-6, 11-8, 11-6 the pressure was really on Paul Drinkhall when he faced Po Huang Chen. Could an upset be on the cards ?. Paul was having none of it. He eased through the gears as was needed and ran out a 11-5, 14-12, 11-9 winner. The next game between Gavin Rumgay and Jason Sugrue was arguably the most dramatic of the day. Jason pinched the first two games but Gavin fought back to level. Jason made all of the running in the final end but try as he did he just couldn’t get over the finish line. Gavin raised the tempo even higher and he eventually sealed victory 12-14, 10-12, 11-5, 11-7, 11-9 to give his side a comforting 4-2 lead. The game between Colum Slevin and Darius Knight was equally fascinating (controlled aggression versus all-out aggression would be one way of describing it) and it was Darius who retained his 100 % record by beating the Irish legend 12-14, 11-7, 13-11, 12-10. England no. 81 Scott Crawford excelled in the last game, and he fought back from 2-1 down to get the better of England no. 45 Daniel Basterfield 12-14, 11-6, 2-11, 11-5, 11-6. A very good result for Barrow when you consider the trouble they had been in when the scores were locked at 2-2.
Fusion did well to beat Ormesby 5-3. There was never much between the two teams. Four games were decided in the fifth end and these were shared at 2-2. Likewise the scores were also tied 2-2 at the half-way stage. Sule Olaleye and Mark Smith were both undefeated for Fusion whilst Michael Marsden won twice for Ormesby. Michael had to pull out all the stops to get the better of Kaseem Adele Adisa 12-10, 11-7, 9-11, 7-11, 12-10 in game four whilst Mark Smith’s win over John Murphy was equally nail-biting. Mark eventually clinched victory 19-17, 11-13, 11-5, 8-11, 12-10. Former Nigerian international, 45 year-old Sule Olaleye had played his part by fighting back from 2-0 down to get the better of England no. nine Damien Nicholls 6-11, 8-11, 11-3, 11-8, 11-6 to give Fusion a vital 3-2 lead.
Sycamore’s 6-2 win over BATTS will give them renewed hope that they can avoid relegation. Wang Zheng won twice for BATTS but Sycamore made no mistake in the other games and Omkar Torgalkar (one win), Stewart Crawford (one win), Kevin Dolder (two wins) and Daniel Lowe (two wins) remained in control throughout. Wang Zheng repeated his victory against Omkar Torgalkar in the Peterborough Grand Prix, winning 16-14, 11-8, 11-8.
Steve Kerns British League Press Officer
Photo: Lewis Grey – winner over Terry Young