Close encounters in table tennis handicap quarter-finals

First published in Sport

THERE were close matches in the Paperstation Malvern Table Tennis League Handicap competition quarter-finals with excellent performances by Division One teams against lower-ranked opposition.

Manor Park Express recovered a 76-point handicap against Manor Park Rangers to win by 18, thanks to fine displays from Dale Dickenson and Dave Woodyatt only losing two and three sets respectively.

Matt Lang played superbly for Division Two outfit Rangers to take three sets against Ray Page, two against Dickenson and one against Woodyatt.

Richard Cullis also played well, defeating Page by a single point and sharing his four sets against Woodyatt, but overall they just failed to protect their advantage.

Pterodactyls too made their Division One experience count, recovering a 243-point handicap to defeat Division Three side Abbeydowne by 49 with unbeaten performances from Steve Glazzard, Ian Bell and Graham Collier.

CSSC Ramblers also won every set against their Division Three opponents Manor Park Crackpots with Chris Hewitt, Graham Thompson and Alan Salisbury again in devastating form, recovering a 286-point handicap to triumph by 38.

In the secondary competition , the all-Division Three clash between Tornados and Crackpots 'B' was won by just 19 points, despite Matt White winning 10 of his 12 sets and only dropping two against Dominic Weston.

Weston went on to win nine of his 12 sets and Andy Banks eight.

Zoe Snee's two winning sets against Stan Gynn ultimately proved crucial, together with Weston and Banks sharing the four doubles sets with White and Ted Cates to earn Tornados a narrow victory.

Toby Wren and Martin Snee were again in fine form for Manor Park Travellers, winning 11 of their 12 sets against Upton Floods to emerge victorious by 16 points.

Ken Hipwell also made a solid contribution, only dropping three sets against their fellow Division Two opponents.

Roger Davies won three of his 12 sets for Upton with Pete Nash contributing the other two.

Division One outfit Ledbury Lions were in excellent form against Poolbrook Panthers with Steve Meredith, Richard Smith and Patryk Kovacz winning all their sets to recover a 257-point handicap to triumph by 29 against their Division Three opponents.

Ledbury Rovers also overcame lower division opposition in YMCA Vulcans, pulling back a 155-point handicap to win by 20 thanks largely to an unbeaten performance by Ady Marshall.

Richard Bennett played superbly for Division Two club Vulcans, taking three sets off Jack Castle and one off James Dance.

RESULTS Main quarter-finals: Manor Park Crackpots 402 (286) CSSC Ramblers 440; Pterodactyls Old Boys 440 Abbeydowne 391 (243); Manor Park Express 395 Manor Park Rangers 377 (76); semi-finals (week commencing March 31): Pterodactyls Old Boys v Ledbury Collection or Nomads; Manor Park Express v CSSC Ramblers.

Secondary quarter-finals: Crackpots 'B' 374 Tornados 393 (52); Ledbury Rovers 433 Vulcans 413 (155); Ledbury Lions 440 Poolbrook Panthers 411(257); Manor Park Travellers 449 Upton Floods 433 (151); semi-finals (week commencing March 31): Tornados v Ledbury Lions; Ledbury Rovers v Manor Park Travellers.

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