Rayne A’s Hector Rogers sprang the surprise of the season so far in the Braintree Table Tennis League when he overcame reigning men’s singles champion Brandon Crouchman.

Crouchman lost only one of his 56 singles last season – one of only two appearances by former Chelmsford champion Rik James – and had started this season in similar vein.

Rogers had taken away former men’s champion Terry Dowsett’s unbeaten record in his previous match but initially did not look like repeating that feat here.

Crouchman won the first game 12-10 and when he eased to an 11-3 win in the second, a regulation win looked on the cards. But Rogers dug in with two close wins at 12-10 and 11-9 and then closed out the match with a more convincing 11-5.

Crouchman’s record was not the only one to go in Liberal A’s 6-4 win at Rayne A. Peter Hayden, who beat Rogers, was found wanting by Adam Buxton in another fluctuating five games. Buxton also had to come from behind before coming through 3-2 (7-11, 11-8, 8-11, 11-9, 11-8).

Netts B remain third after their 9-1 win over their own C team while their A team retained their hundred per cent record with a 7-3 win over Rayne B.

Mike Johnston and Andrew Huckson were unbeaten in Liberal B’s 8-2 win over Rayne C while Chris Parr and Victor Chan followed suit in Black Notley A’s win by the same score against Rayne D.

In division two Dean Andrews made his first appearance at that level for many years and duly won his three singles in Rayne E’s 7-3 win over Nomads.

Liberal C crept one point closer to leaders Notley B with an 8-2 win over Rayne G while Notley were restricted to 7-3 against Felsted RBL A by a Richard Baxter hat-trick.

Adam Clift scored an excellent win over Dave Marsh in Notley D’s 7-3 defeat by Rayne F while Notley C looked to a full house from Glen Laing to enable them to draw with Netts D.

Felsted C increased their lead to seven points in division three when they took nine from Netts F, Peter Hardy’s win over Andy Laws preventing the whitewash.

Had it not been for Dave Whiting, Rayne H would still be four points behind, but he took all his singles for Rayne J in the H team’s 6-4 win.

Jim Davy and Stewart Ireland were unbeaten in Notley E’s 9-1 win over their own H team but it was Ian Rubens who stole the honours for the division’s player of the week.

Playing up from the J team, he won his three singles for Rayne I while the two regulars won only one each in the draw against Notley G.