In-form Ely make short work of Ellesmere
- Credit: Archant
Table Tennis Ellesmere entertained Ely and found them in top form as the Mohans – Liam, Kieran and Patrick – roared through the card for a whitewash.
However, there were some close legs throughout the evening but only one game went to five, that between Rhys Davies and Kieran.
Fulbourn II recruited Jannek Hauser to join Nigel Bates and Peter Xie, while Ely II invited Rob Pownall up from the ranks to join Ashley Rowe and Emily Birt.
Rowe made the most of his opponents tentative approach, beating both Hauser and Bates in five. However. this was the sum total of Ely’s success as Xie cruised to his maximum, supported by two each from Bates and Hauser.
Fulbourn I had players to spare for the visit of Soham and chose to field a team comprising Andy Merritt, Ronald Cron and Peters Zivtins.
The latter suffered at the hands of Tony Everitt who beat him in four and Clive Woollard who needed the fifth. Fulbourn won the five-set doubles to give them the match by 8-2.
There was great relief at Soham Comrades I as they won their first match of the season, albeit against next-to-bottom NCI. There was not a lot in it with the teams level 3-3 going into the seventh set and with NCI’s Howard Morley comfortably defeating Nathan Stewart in his first match and Kelvin Mitchell on a possible maximum, the signs for Comrades were looking ominous.
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However, Syd Dunster saw off Morley in a close three leg game and Stewart disposed of Mitchell in four and after being two legs down to Morley, Mark Lillyman pulled it back to win in the only fifth leg match of the evening. NCI took the doubles but the match went to Comrades 6-4.
The battle of the Robs was re-enacted when Ely IV faced Fulbourn IV.
This time it was more one-sided with energetic Pownall seeing off out-of-sorts Powell without much trouble. Ely’s Neil Abram also beat Powell and Danny Bates but Fulbourn had Jannek Hauser to steady the ship with a maximum and bring them home by 6-4.
Fred Laband helped himself to two comfortable wins for Ely III which dented the hopes of Fulbourn V, who looked to be racing towards a fine finish.
Fulbourn were anchored by Zak Davey’s maximum, although at 2-1 down and 9-9 in the fourth he nearly came unstuck against Anne Chambers. Both Laband and Neil Weir beat the much-travelled Nick Gatherer but it was Fulbourn who took the match by 7-3.
Michael Wells, of Soham Comrades IV, surprised Bela Szabo of the II’s but that was the IV’s only success in a match which saw Kin Choi Chan and Rob Wallis achieve maximums in their singles and then combine to take the doubles against Wells and Peter Diver.
Soham Comrades III brought along Adam Speed to face Fulbourn III, immediately recognisable by his wrap-around serve delivered from extensively bent knees. He beat Dave Roitman and Phil Hague in five but came unstuck against Tom Lodziak who also beat Barry Sore and Alan Chambers to complete his maximum.
Comrades’ Chambers pulled one back against Roitman to make the final score 7-3 to Fulbourn.
In Division 3, Haddenham lined up Phil Emmerson, Paul Shepherd and Adam Curry for the visit of Fulbourn VII - a team prepared to battle all the way.
Rob Powell was beaten to the punch by Shepherd, while his game with Curry was a swings and roundabouts affair going to Curry at deuce in the fifth. Carl Woolf fared a little luckier with close games against Emmerson and Shepherd.
The doubles went to Fulbourn in the fifth, resulting in a very fair draw.