Park life proving good for Graves table tennis team

GRAVES Park D have strengthened their position at the top of the AD Dickinson Division Two – but Penmaen E are proving difficult to shake off, as their win over Penmaen C has proven.

If one of the promotion favourites, Graves Park D, expected an easy ride when they visited Sibsey A, they were much mistaken, and had to fight all the way for their 9-1 victory.

Jason Cade provided stern opposition, taking Graham Walters to four, and Paul Matschull to five ends but losing both times, before beating fifth-ranked Mick Dodes in straight sets.

Phil Coote was 2-1 up against Mick, but this time, Mick dug in to take the next two to secure victory.

By contrast, the doubles was a bit of an anticlimax,

Sam Langford and Jason succumbing to Mick and Graham in straight sets.

Any aspirations Penmaen C may have had of a quick return to Division One has had to be put on a back burner for the time being following their 3-7 reverse at the hands of top-of-the-table Penmaen E.

Pete Evans and Richard Malik were in imposing form, winning their three, although Richard was given a stern examination by Dave Smith, Dave losing 10-12 in the fifth end.

All of the C team beat James Bittner, James taking the first end out of John Shortland before John regained the initiative. Dave Smith and Chris Cooke teamed up to take on Pete and Richard in the doubles, and had the second leg – which ended up 15-17 gone their way instead, who knows what might have happened?

As it was, the E team comfortably closed out the third leg to record a very impressive victory.

Mick Dodes and Paul Matschull did the damage for Graves Park D when they visited Lodgers C, each winning their three games with relative ease.

Dave Walters, however, found the going tough, losing out in five ends to both Pete Bell and Steve Blanchard, and in straight sets to Pete Truepenny.

The doubles was another closely contested game, Pete Bell and Steve winning the first two ends, only to see Mick and Paul claw their way back into the game, winning at deuce in the third end, and then taking the next two ends to gain a 7-3 victory on the night.

With Sibsey A only able to field two players in their match against Penmaen C, they could have been excused a sense of despondency before they even started.

However, the reverse seemed to be the case, Sam Langford and Phil Coote battling all the way, Sam narrowly losing out in five ends to Chris Cooke, and Phil losing, also in five ends, to Dave Smith, before recording the first – and only – victory of the night when he beat John Shortland in straight sets.

With Dave and Chris beating Phil and Sam in three tight ends in the doubles, a 9-1 victory was achieved – but Sibsey will rue the absence of a third player.