Park skipper Smith unscathed on table tennis return

Local sport from the Boston Standard, Lincolnshire:, on Twitter @standardduncan
Local sport from the Boston Standard, Lincolnshire:, on Twitter @standardduncan

Graves Park A welcomed back captain Rob Smith after a lengthy absence through injury, and he came through the evening unscathed, although he must have been happy that opponents Graves Park C had only two players in their Boston and District Table Tennis League Division One match.

Alan Reetham started the proceedings with a valuable win over Martin Walters in five sets, but James Quinton powered through his three games, winning each in straight sets.

Rob also had a five-ender against Martin, but faded in the final leg, whilst Phil Brooks took the first leg against Martin, but then lost the next three.

Simon Raistrick certainly knew he had been in a match when his two-man Lodgers Blades team visited Wrangle, with the three singles going to five ends, and a four-set doubles to round off the evening.

Simon started with a victory over Sam Cooper, but then went down to Pete Evans before meeting Dave Coulson.

Winning the first two ends 11-1 and 11-2, Simon must have feared that Dave would turn things round, and this he duly did, taking the next two to set up a fifth set decider, which eventually fell to a much-relieved Simon.

Gavin Read chipped in with a single win, against Sam, in a game which hinged on a third leg, which Gavin won 20-18 before winning the next two.

Sibsey C drew first blood when they visited Penmaen, Roger Hooten beating Brett Heppenstall in the first end 13-11; this, unfortunately, was the only set Sibsey won in the singles, although Dave Smith also had two deuce set defeats against Brett, and Chris Cooke another, against Derek Wood.

Roger and Chris briefly led in the doubles, going 1-0 sets up against Alan Ashberry and Brett, but lost the next three to make it a fifth maximum this season for the defending champions.

Results: Graves Park A 4 Graves Park C 6, Wrangle 7 Lodgers Blades 3, Penmaen 10 Sibsey C 0.

In Division Two, Graves Park Nomads were relieved to see visitors Mayflower Pilgrims arrive with only two players, especially when Darron Kent was is such fine form, taking his three singles without dropping a set.

Howard Williams won two games, both in four sets, against John Shortland and Chris Wicks, although these were by the tightest of margins, but he came unstuck against the highly experienced Chips Davy.

The doubles was another tight game, Darron and Howard emerging victors in four sets against Chips and Chris.

Sibsey B’s Adam Elston started his second game of the season with a straight set victory over Chris Wicks of Graves Park Nomads, although Chris was unlucky not to take the first leg, which went 13-11 in Adam’s favour.

John Shortland needed five sets to beat Adam, whilst Chips Davy went one better, beating Adam in four.

Perhaps the game of the evening pitted Steve Hill against Chips, with Steve taking the first end at deuce, before Chips hit back to take the next two legs.

Steve was not to be beaten, however, and he stormed back to take the next two ends.

Wayne Grooby had a great evening, completely in control of his three games, taking each in straight sets.

With eight games gone, Belchford were already 8-0 down, and only two close legs, both lost at deuce, to show for their efforts against league leaders Sibsey A.

However, Brian Todd stepped up to the table and played a captain’s role in defeating Fred Calvert in five nerve-wracking ends.

Brian then teamed up with Jon Newby to take on Matt Haslam and Fred in the doubles, but try as they might, they were unable to repeat Brian’s heroics in the previous game.

Results: Graves Park Nomads 4 Mayflower Pilgrims 6, Sibsey B 8 Graves Park Nomads 2, Belchford 1 Sibsey A 9.