Division 1a Champions Lancashire - The "Green Machine"

Lancashire Cadet Division 1a Champions as North West Dominates

The North West dominated this season’s renewal of the County Championships Cadet Division 1A held at Burton Uxbridge Table Tennis, with Lancashire edging out Cheshire to be champions and earn promotion to the Premier Division for next season.

The “Green Machine” came with a seven strong squad and made their way through their first three matches with ease as they dispatched Clwyd, Staffordshire 2 & Lincolnshire 2, dropping only one game to the latter.

Meanwhile, Cheshire had also recorded three victories, but theirs were much closer, all 6-4 against Clwyd, Staffs 2 & Nottinghamshire. The key game came in the fourth round of matches and it was Cheshire who got off to a flier winning the first two matches. Lancashire hit back to level at 2-2 but again Cheshire responded with the next two, including a second win for Kin Fung Chan. This left the score at 4-2 to Cheshire but with the next going to Lancs the eighth game proved to be key, with both Robert Barker & Joe Pilkington previously unbeaten on the day.

The first end was as tight as they get with neither player asserting themselves until Barker squeezed it 12-10. After that the traffic became more one way as the Lancashire number 1 ran out an 11-6 & 11-3 winner to once again level the tie.

Buoyed by this success, Lancashire were now fighting for everything and Beth Farnworth came back from 2-0 down to take the ninth game 3-2 and, despite a three point lead existing only once in the finale, James Chappell took it in four games to take Lancashire to victory.

Both teams then completed final match victories to finish the day in first & second places respectively.

Nottinghamshire just pipped Lincolnshire 2 to third place whilst Staffordshire 2 beat Clwyd to avoid the wooden spoon. Individually Lancashire’s Robert Barker came out best on the day winning all 10 games from number 1. Teammate Craig Lowe was unbeaten in his six games from number 3. For the girls, Bethany Farnworth took the only 100% record including an excellent win over Nottinghamshire’s Amy Humphreys.

Although a long day, it was all played in good spirits, and in the end Lancashire were deserved winners and with many of their players still available for Cadet selection next year they must be expected to put up a strong showing when they join the Cadet County elite in 2012/13.

For the (unofficial) Cadet 1a Division results click here

For the (unofficial) Cadet 1a Division table click here