Northumberland Table Tennis Association’s Junior Championship was held at The Sporting Club at Cramlington on Friday 16th February, 2018.

The tournament hosts four different events – Junior Singles (under 18), Cadet Singles (under 15), Under 13 Singles and Under 12 Singles. Due to time constraints, with the tournament being held on a Friday evening, every match is played as a best of 3 ends. Any player registered for a club associated with the Northumbria Table Tennis League can enter but local schools are also approached to involve students with an interest in the game.

The biggest event, the Junior Singles, had a turn-out of 21 players with Adam Webster of NECA and Andrew Matfin and Sree Kanakala of Cramlington being the top seeds. The number 2 and 3 seeds met in the semi-finals but it was the number 3 seed Kanakala who triumphed to make his way to the final. In the other half of the draw, top seed Webster beat Alan Roskilly in the quarters then Ethan Brown in the semis. In the end Webster, who was the only player playing above division 3 standard of the Northumbria Winter League, took a comfortable win against Kanakala in the final to become the 2017/18 Junior Champion.

In the Cadet Singles, Kanakala had the opportunity to regain some pride and did so promptly when he beat Freddie McKenna in the quarter-finals, Alan Roskilly in the semi-finals and then Ethan Brown in the final. Brown, who plays for Cramlington Ravens in division 3, has had a good local league season but came unstuck against Kanakala.

 

Cramlington’s superb young player Oliver Ho did well to win both the Under 13 and Under 12 Singles. In the Under 13 event he beat Jake Borg, Archie McLean and Jessica Yang to get himself into the final against Leo Conn. Conn beat Yang in the group stages, had a bye into the first round then beat Freddie McKenna in their semi-final. The final was a close-fought affair with Ho taking the first end then Conn taking a comfortable 11-6 end. The deciding end was won 11-9 by Ho, giving him his first title of the day.

Only a few players under the age of 12 signed up for the tournament and in a round robin format Oliver Ho beat both Jessica Yang and Leo Conn to take his second title of the day, Conn winning yet another runner-up medal.

 

Northumberland Table Tennis Closed Championship 10 February 2018

With records going back as far as 1931, the Northumberland Table Tennis Association’s annual Closed Tournament still continues to be a great success and this year’s tournament was absolutely no exception. Any player who is affiliated with a club in the Northumbria Table Tennis League is eligible to enter and, as per recent history, the event was held at The Sporting Club of Cramlington.

Junior Tournament

A separate tournament for junior players affiliated with local table tennis clubs or local schools will be held on Friday 16th February also at the Sporting Club of Cramlington. For more information, please visit the Northumbria County Table Tennis website listed at the end of this article.

Open Singles

The main event which every player is eligible to enter is the Open Singles. Players of all ages and abilities compete, without aid of a handicap, for the prestigious Alan Morpeth Memorial Cup. The top seeds were last year’s winner Andrew Wilkinson, Graeme Barella, Eddie Smith, Jim Stamas and Steve Penman. Notable absences Chun Yin Yu and Dave Robson, both of whom would have been seeded, have poor records in local tournament history and spectators were left to surmise that they would rather avoid the competition than face the ignominy of defeat.

For the most part, the script went to plan – the top four seeds all made it to the semi-finals and fifth seed Penman was put out in the quarters by Wilkinson in an enthralling five-set encounter which could’ve easily gone either way. In the last end in particular, Penman was up, but whether due to nerves or Wilkinson’s notorious fighting spirit, he just couldn’t sustain the pressure, allowing Wilkinson to sneak the win.

The biggest upset of the event however came in the following round when Eddie Smith beat Wilkinson 11-8 in the deciding end of their semi-final. Smith, who once reached the considerable heights of ranking 13th in Senior Men and 2nd Veteran Men in England is no stranger to tournament finals having won the Newcastle Open, Newcastle Grand Prix, Sunderland Masters veterans on three occasions and no less than twelve Northumberland Closed Tournament Open Singles titles. A colossal figure in north east table tennis at the peak of his career, his lack of practice and local league matchplay means his recent wins have been restricted to the Veterans category in the Closed tournament.

Wilkinson went 2-1 up and, despite not playing his best table tennis, looked to mostly be in control. All credit to Smith however as he kept battling and in the fourth end when Wilkinson took his foot off the pedal, the left-hander capitalised to earn a fairly comfortable 11-6 win. In the deciding end, Wilkinson mistimed a few too many forehands meaning Smith was able to keep the pressure on and even edge in front. At 9-8 down the number one seed called a time-out but it didn’t have the desired impact as Smith then won the next point to go to 10-8. This gave Smith the serve for match point, and he was able to take the win at the first time of asking, to somewhat muted applause from the crowd as an expected finalist bowed out early.

In the other half of the draw, Barella’s determination to regain the Alan Morpeth trophy was clear as he waltzed through assorted Premier division players without so much as dropping an end. In the quarter-finals he beat Paul Baines 3-0, then in the semi-finals he quickly dispatched number four seed Jim Stamas 11-7, 11-5 and 11-4.

In the final, Eddie Smith stopped the Sunderland-born player in his tracks by winning the first set 13-11. It was neck and neck all the way but Barella misread a couple of Smith’s notoriously tricky “lefty” serves and tentatively threw one too many forehands off the end of the table, giving his opponent the advantage. The second end started in a similarly nervous fashion, a recurrence of Barella’s 3-0 loss to Wilkinson in last year’s final possibly weighing on the player’s mind, but Smith made a few unforced errors and handed Barella the initiative. Smith switched on half-way through the end to retrieve a few points but Barella’s ability to read the game and control the play with excellent blocks and counter-loops was starting to come together, proving enough to win the end and tie the match at one set each. Once this end was won, Barella settled into the match and looked like a different player, coming out on top of the majority of some genuinely excellent rallies. The player’s form from earlier in the tournament returned and Smith had no answer, losing the next ends 11-4 and 11-7 respectively. This gave Barella a 3-1 victory, the Northumberland Closed Tournament Open Singles title and access to the Alan Morpeth trophy.

Womens Singles

Despite a poor turn-out in the womens event, the Philomena Clark memorial trophy was still hotly-contested. In the end, Lynne Herrington’s style of close to the table control with short pimple rubber on her backhand gave her the title – though it was incredibly tight, as she won on countback. Linda Pinkham beat Lynsey Storey, Storey beat Herrington and Herrington beat Pinkham meaning the referees had the job of working out who had lost the fewest sets. As is commonplace in the women’s game, the matches mostly consisted of fast, flat, reactive table tennis with some brilliant rallies which often gravitated around Storey’s enjoyable to watch aggressive hitting style.

Veterans Singles

After a loss that would’ve hurt his pride, Andrew Wilkinson found himself with a chance for redemption as he battled his way to the finals of the Veterans event to once again face Eddie Smith. Wilkinson as the number one seed found some form and energy early on in the competition, beating Paul Baines in three straight sets in the semi-finals.

Smith on the other hand had a more challenging journey as he had to face age-old rival Steve Penman. Smith won the first end but Penman obliterated him in the second before capitulating to lose 3-1 overall.

A combination of Wilkinson’s return to form and desire for revenge was not what Smith would’ve wanted to face in the final, having played hours of table tennis already including a number of physically and mentally exhausting matches throughout the day. In the end these factors proved too much for the NESLC player and Wilkinson clinched two tight ends before cruising to victory in the third to win the Veterans title.

Handicap Singles

One of the best events of the day was undoubtedly the Handicap Singles event. Every season a team Handicap Cup competition runs in the Northumbria Winter League, but the singles event gives every player in the league the opportunity to compete on a level playing field. More able players will have lower handicaps meaning they will give a number of points as head-starts against weaker opponents. The Handicap Singles use the old table tennis rules, up to 21 points and best of 3 ends.

The lowest handicap players, the likes of the top seeds in the Open Singles event, often don’t enter the Handicap Singles to conserve energy – and because it can be incredibly difficult to win when they are giving opponents 18-point head-starts! This year was no different, with Jamie Lupton’s handicap of 27 being the lowest on display.

It was a family affair for the Luptons as Jamie found himself facing his father in just the second round of the competition. With a 14-point head-start however, it was always going to be a tough ask for Jamie as Dad Paul knows his game inside out. It proved too much of an ask and Lupton senior made his way through to the semi-final before being beaten by finalist Adam Hardiman.

On the other side of the draw, Adrian Barnes who plays a unique Korean Penhold style of play and possesses the highest possible handicap, worked his way up to the semi-finals in which he found himself matched against Sreeraag Kanakala with a 7-point head-start. Unfortunately for Barnes, Kanakala was in a rich vein of form and the 7 points simply weren’t enough.

The final of the event, between two Cramlington players in Kanakala and Hardiman, was one of the most enjoyable spectacles of the day. Just three points separated the two players with Kanakala having the advantage, and it’s a sure-fire sign that the league’s handicap system works when the end result was 18-21, 21-16, 21-18 in Kanakala’s favour. The two players’ styles complemented each other from the spectators’ perspective as balls were blasted back and returned with style on a regular and consistent basis.

Banded Singles

In Band 1, Steve Penman had to beat Jamie Lupton twice as he faced him in both the group stages and the final of the event. Lupton plays the style of a retriever, backing off from the table and returning balls from a distance with a view to outlasting his opponent. Such a summary does him scant justice however as he is phenomenally talented at this, covering what feels to his opponents like miles of ground just to get the ball back on the table. As such he’s no easy ride and Penman did well to keep him at bay twice in a row.

Band 2’s Rod Roberts came into the event with some good results as he knocked experienced Premier player Jimmy Scope out of the Open Singles event, and then took an end off number four seed Jim Stamas. Unfortunately his form didn’t continue as his style clashed with Womens Singles winner Lynne Herrington in the semi-final. In the final Herrington faced Mohinder Rawat in an unusual encounter, Rawat’s off the table style causing difficulties for the Durham County player. In the end, despite a second set loss of 11-4, Rawat triumphed 3-1.

Handicap runner-up Adam Hardiman was the winner of Band 3 where he faced friend, fellow Cramlington club mate and University compatriot Blair Carmichael. After the pair knocked out Matfen duo Nigel Tree and John Henderson in the semi-finals, Hardiman kept his nerve to win 3-1, giving him both the title and the bragging rights over his friend.

Band 4 was an almost entirely Cramlington-only affair, excluding tournament assistant referee Nigel Coe who was unable to make it through the group stage. Sreeraag Kanakala once again found himself on the winners’ roster as he beat fellow Richard Williamson in three straight sets, the young player’s aggressive style proving too quick to deal with for Williamson who prefers a defensive approach.

In the final band, Band 5, Paul Lupton won a hard-fought victory over the experienced long pimple player Alan Hedley. Hedley stormed to a comfortable 2-0 lead but Lupton hung on and seemed to get more used to Hedley’s style as the match went on, eventually winning 11-8 in the deciding end. Hedley’s route to the final involved winning his group then beating Linda Pinkham in the semi-finals; Lupton also winning his group then beating Adrian Barnes to progress.

Doubles

An absence of top players opened the Doubles event out this year, making it highly competitive. In this format, players are split into two pools – higher and lower ranked. One player from each pool is drawn out of a hat to determine the pairings.

Rob Reed and Phil Smith proved a challenging combination but they were undone in the semi-finals by the Matfen teammates Dave Swan and John Henderson. Both pimples players, the fortune of the draw certainly worked in their favour as they have played together in doubles matches on a number of occasions in the league.

At the other side of the draw, the event’s highest ranking player Jamie Dent combined with Aubrey Drapkin to make it through to the semi-finals but there they faced a tough combination of Dent’s Mount teammate David Cutler and Band 3 winner Adam Hardiman.

The tricky Matfen duo of Swan and Henderson won the first end of the final comfortably but once Cutler and Hardiman got used to their styles, they made short work of claiming the title, winning 6, 6 and 3.

Players of the Tournament

Although Graeme Barella faced and defeated the stiffest competition in the tournament, two names have appeared consistently throughout this report – Sreeraag Kanakala and Adam Hardiman.

Kanakala won both the Handicap Singles and the Band 4 event, whilst Hardiman won both the Band 3 and Doubles events whilst also finishing as runner-up in the Handicap. Both players displayed tremendous skill and sporting attitudes throughout the day and while there is no official award for it, they undoubtedly deserve to be informally appointed joint Players of the Tournament.

 

If you’re interested in starting to play table tennis, either socially or in the league, please visit www.nctt.co.uk for more information.

On Saturday, 10th February at the Sporting Club in Cramlington, the Northumberland Table Tennis Association once against hosts its annual Closed Tournament for players who have participated in the league. The Tournament, organised by league Chairman Gareth Pearson and his team, consists of a number of events including Open, Womens, Veterans and Handicap singles.

Open Singles

The biggest entry is for the Open Singles in which nine groups of players will battle it out to win the biggest and most prestigious trophy. The top seed in this is last year’s winner, Andrew Wilkinson. Cramlington Casuals’ star player has lost just one match this season, against Chun Yin Yu of NECA A, but the Chinese University student failed to get his entry in by the deadline despite being given a second opportunity to do so. Spectators are now wondering whether this is a lack of organisational skills, or the fear of facing Wilkinson in a tournament environment where Yu has never prevailed over the number one seed. The second seed is last year’s Open Singles runner up Graeme Barella who lost 3-0 to Wilkinson in the final. Mount A’s Barella has lost two matches this season, one also to Chun Yin Yu, and an unexpected defeat against NESLC’s Richard Wilson. When on form and in the right mindset, Barella can beat any player in the league and has proven this with a solid track record against top seed Wilkinson. Coupled with a thirst for revenge, a final between the top seeds could be brilliant viewing.

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Cramlington Cobras travelled to Matfen with only two players this week in Division 2 and were promptly undone as the Senators’ line-up of Alex Holliday, Robert Neil Forsyth and Stephen Oxley won 10-0 against Mike Dunn and Joe Swinburn. The score appears representative of a gulf in class between the two teams as the visitors were unable to even pick up a single game across all 7 matches played. This win boosts the Senators’ challenge for the title as they currently lie in second place with 73 points but 2 games in hand over league leaders Brandon Anacondas on 87 points.

Conversely, the Anacondas didn’t do themselves any favours in this regard as they drew 5-5 with Cramlington Trojans. The home team’s Adam Hardiman and Blair Carmichael each won 2 matches and combined to win the draw-sealing doubles. Brandon’s Tony Taylor and Paul Dale both won 1 match each but anti-loop player Stephen Pattinson shows his continued improvement as he won his hat-trick and took Player of the Match.

Third-placed Ouston B encountered a similar stumbling block as they dropped 5 key points to Cramlington Swifts. Peter Wilkinson and Ron Scott both won 2 matches, and although Lynsey Storey wasn’t able to pick up any wins she combined with Wilkinson to win the doubles. Ouston’s Tom Fowle and Jeff McKenna both beat Storey but Kevin Richardson took Player of the Match as he beat all of the Swifts’ players.

The last match of the week was an interesting one when Mount D travelled to Tyneside to face a B team line-up of John Donnelly, Don Catley and James Robertson. All three Mount players, John Rowell, Michael Bradley and Bill Edwards, won a single match – but against different opponents. Donnelly, Catley and Robertson each won two matches, Robertson and Donnelly also pairing up to take the doubles.

In Division 3, Matfen Tribunes put themselves atop the table as David Swan, Nigel Tree and Keith Hodges beat Saints’ Steven Dawson, Ray Joynson and Ken Greatbatch 8-2. Swan took his hat-trick and Player of the Match, Hodges also winning 3 whilst Tree chipped in with a single win against Greatbatch.

Philip Smith continues his rich vein of form by winning his three matches against interclub rivals Cramlington Spartans this week, but it was the Corinthians’ Richard Williamson who took Player of the Match by losing fewer points. Teammate Alan Hedley lost two matches but took a win from Paul Long, rendering her void of wins. Sam Nair and Adrian Barnes made up the 2 wins for the Spartans as the Corinthians took the fixture 8-2 overall.

Tynemouth Golf Club’s resident PGA Professional has returned to table tennis after a decades-long hiatus, and already finds himself winning matches in Division 3. John McKenna, alongside Daniel McManus and Joe Hastings, drew 5-5 with Brandon Bravehearts – McKenna and McManus both winning two matches, Hastings winning one. Brandon’s Patrick Nicholson took Player of the Match however as he won all three of his games, supported with a single win by Edward Nicholson. John Parkin as the home team’s third player was unable to win any matches.

Both Old England teams cruised to victory in Division 1 this week as the Crocks beat Tyneside A and the Jacks beat Ouston A. Tyneside and Ouston both find themselves in a relegation scrap after the half-way point and desperately need to pick up points if they want to stay in the division.

Colin Robson and Kenneth Clark both won their hat-tricks for the Crocks against Tyneside’s Mark Patterson and James Robertson but David Craddock won the battle of players “playing up” as he beat Division 3’s Joseph Perrin, giving Tyneside just a single point from their 9-1 defeat.

Neil Rodgers marked a notable win against Division 1’s second-highest averaging player Joe Muldowney when Ouston faced the Jacks, but this was their only shining light in an otherwise dismal performance, only Michael Lyons able to win any other ends. Alan Atkinson and Lynne Herrington both won their hat-tricks; Mark Rodgers unable to pick up any wins for the home side.

The other two fixtures, NECA B against Mitford and Matfen Centurions against Prudhoe United Services Club B were closer matches. Mitford’s Barry Hill put in a top performance as he was the only person to win three games against NECA B’s lineup of Kenneth Lee, Barry Li and Kit Robinson. Lee and Li both won their matches against Michael Bull and Robert Atwell but Robinson was unable to pick up any wins leading to a 6-4 victory for the away team.

Mark O’Connor was in a similar position as he was the only player to win three for Prudhoe against Matfen. Malcolm Aitchison won 2 games for the home side whilst both Chris Kilsby and Philip Rainford were only able to beat Maurice Cheek, and both lost to Shirley Gelder. Fortunately for Matfen, an 11-9 win in the deciding end of the doubles allowed them to scrape their fifth point and hold on to a draw.

Matfen find themselves in the relegation places at the moment, just one point behind Tyneside A but with a game in hand. NECA B similarly find themselves just a few points above the drop and the battles between the four relegation candidates will likely prove instrumental in deciding who gets to stay up.

At the other end of the table, a gap has opened up between Mount C and third-placed Cramlington Reivers with Mount having 65 points and Reivers just 58. Old England Jacks are sitting 2 points above Mount in the top slot and their compatriots Old England Crocks are just behind the Reivers in fourth place, albeit with a game in hand.

Mount C’s Dan Dodds and Tony Gelder are top of the averages, with the former having won more games but the latter having a better ratio of games won. Mitford’s Barry Hill is in third place with 21 games won from 29, followed up quickly by Cramlington Reivers’ Paul Jamieson and Tyneside A’s Mark Kimberley, both with 21 games won out of 30 played.

It was a hectic week in the Premier division this week with four games being played; three of which were close encounters and one a total whitewash.

The league leaders NECA, spearheaded by top player Chun Yin Yu, hosted a St Chads team which fielded neither Josh or Keith Weatherby, leading to a 10-0 win in which only a single set was won by the away team when Jimmy Scope took an end off third player Adam Webster.

Richard Wilson deserves a shout-out as he managed to beat one of the league’s best players Graeme Barella as NESLC Eagles scraped a 6-4 victory at home to Mount A. As well as beating Barella, Wilson took Player of the Match as he beat both Phil Prady and Anthony Ainley to complete his hat-trick. Barella beat Stamas and Baines, despite being 2-1 and having match point against him, but teammates Prady and Ainley could only grab one win between them as Ainley beat Stamas. Paul Baines also won two as he defeated Prady and Ainley, and this was enough to take the win despite Stamas and Wilson losing the doubles to Ainley and Barella.

Youngster Callum McRae, with his retrieving/control style of play helped Cramlington Stingers to a one of only four wins this season as they beat Prudhoe and District United Services Club A by 6 games to 4. McRae picked up his hat-trick by beating experienced Premier pimples player John Williamson plus Maurice Cheek and Shirley Gelder. Iain Wood beat Cheek and Gelder, Rob Reed also chipping in with a victory over Gelder.

In the last match of the week, Mount B put up a strong performance at home to Cramlington Tigers, clawing themselves somewhat clear of the relegation battle in the process. Jamie Dent won Player of the Match by beating the Tigers’ Rob Reed, Gareth Pearson and James Bradbury. Rod Roberts did well to beat Pearson and Reed, and Dave Cutler chipped in with a win against Gareth Pearson.

With only 1 win this season, the Tigers find themselves just 5 points clear of bottom place – but unfortunately for them, Newton A have two games in hand. Unless their performances improve in the second half of the season it looks like the drop will be unavoidable.

The second half of the season gets underway this week in the Northumbria Table Tennis league. The champions, Cramlington Casuals, look as though they are very likely to lose the title which they have held for the last five seasons as they are ten points behind the current Premier Division leaders North East Chinese Association who have yet to be beaten this time round.

At the other end of the table relegation threatens Cramlington Stingers and Tigers along with Newton.

Old England Jacks are still unbeaten in Division One although they have drawn three and have a narrow three point lead over Mount C with Cramlington Reivers a further three behind. Ouston A , who have yet to win, will struggle to get away from the foot of the table but any one of the teams in the bottom half could also go down.

Division Two sees four teams in contention for promotion with Brandon and Byshottles currently on top and Matfen Senators in second place only one point ahead of Mount E team and Ouston B who start the second half with a home fixture against Brandon only five points further adrift.

Cramlington TTC could also lose two teams from this division with both the Trojans and Cobras currently in the bottom three along with Newton B.

Matfen Tribunes head Division Three but are only two points ahead of the unbeaten Old England FATTS side. Saints lost ground on the leaders when they were held to a draw by Matfen Whitley Chapel in a rearranged match.

Teams that will have to work hard in the second half to avoid the drop to Division Four are the Cramlington sides Jaguars and Reivers as well as Tyneside TTC C team.

It seems to be a foregone conclusion that Ouston C and Cramlington Falcons will gain promotion from Division Four.

The last scheduled week of League fixtures for the first half of the season were in week commencing Monday 4 December 2017. There were 2 outstanding matches in the Premier division 1 of which were  played prior to Christmas with the remaining fixture due to played on Thursday 4 January.  There were also outstanding matches in divisions One (3); two (1); three (3) and four (1) completed prior to Christmas. Comments on these matches are below.

Cramlington Casuals were held to a draw by NESLC Eagles in a rearranged match in the Premier Division. Andrew Wilkinson only played in the singles and duly won all three but Steve Penman and Dale Aitkenhead were only able to get one each.  Martin Shapira who had been brought into the Eagles side in place of Jim Stamas who was unavailable beat both Penman and Aitkenhead as did Richard Wilson. Wilson also teamed up with Paul Baines to take the doubles set.

This result leaves the Casuals in second place and ten points behind The North East Chinese Association A team.

Bottom club Newton A will play Prudhoe and District A on January 4th in the only outstanding fixture.

League updateOld England Jacks are still unbeaten in Division One and finished the first half of the season with a flourish when they defeated their Crocks side 10 – 0. Joe Muldowney, Jacob Helm and Lynne Herrington made up the winning team with Muldowney and Helm playing together in the doubles.

Having caught up with their fixtures the Jacks are now top of the division, three points in front of Mount C and six ahead of Cramlington Reivers.

Cramlington Swifts  moved up into the top half of the Second Division as Alastair Johnson, Lynsey Storey and Pete Wilkinson overcame a two man Newton B team 9 – 1. John Henderson got the better of Wilkinson for Newton’s lone point.

Stefan Sobell was in fine form for Matfen Whitley Chapel in Division Three , winning all of his singles and with Peter Seago getting two and Mark Perrin one, his team came away from Tyneside TTC C with a 6 – 4 victory. Tom Manuel won two for the home side and also got the doubles set partnered by Ramon Pini who won one of his singles.

Whitley Chapel’s remaining first half match, at home to Saints, resulted in a 5-5 draw. Peter Seago and Stefan Sobel each won 2 games with Linda Pinkham making up Chapel’s 5 wins. Vince Killen and Steve Dawson each won 2 games and combinedc to win the doubles.

Matfen Cohorts entertained Cramlington Dynamos in Division four and Gavin Wilson and Jamie Parker both won two but lost out to young Alan Roskilly. They also won the doubles set against Roskilly and Ojas Aggarwal but the visitors were given three sets as the home side fielded an unregistered player.

Cramlington Reivers who are in second spot in Division One of the Northumbria League entertained unbeaten Old England Jacks in a match that swung one way and then the other before ending all square. Player of the match was Duncan Wraight who won all of his singles although he was pushed all of the way by Lynne Herrington before taking the deciding game 11 – 6. Paul Jamieson and Steve Pearce got one each for the home side while Jake Helm did best for the visitors with victories over Jamieson and Pearce. Alan Atkinson also beat Pearce while Herrington and Atkinson edged out Jamieson and Wraight 12 – 10 in the fifth end in the doubles.

 Dave Swan was unbeaten for Matfen Tribunes who defeated Cramlington Jaguars to go to the top of Division Three. They led 5 – 0 at one stage before the visitors got on the scoreboard but with Swan winning all of his singles and also the doubles with Keith Hodges, Hodges getting two and Nigel Tree one, they ran out 7 – 3 winners. Daniel McManus got two and John Murrells one for the losers.

 Prudhoe and District B had Andrew Firth in form with an unbeaten performance as they defeated North East Chinese Association 6 -4 in a replayed match. Mark O’Connor got two and Shirley Gelder one. Barry Li won two for the unfortunate Chinese who did not have  the same strong team who been well ahead when the original match was abandoned because of a power failure.

 Fifteen year old Adam Webster, who plays in the Premier Division for the Chinese A team excelled himself at the Ormesby Junior Open tournament in Middlesbrough when he won the Junior Singles event with victory over Durham’s Jamie Peacock in the final having beaten  highly ranked number one seed Kieran Wardell of Cleveland in the semis.