The top two teams in the Premier Division of the Tesco Express Northumbria League were both beaten with Cramlington Venture Portraits going down 9 – 1 to St. Chads although it was by no means a one sided affair with seven of the ten sets going to a fifth and deciding end. Jimmy Scope and Keith Weatherby were both unbeaten. NESLC Eagles lost at home to Cramlington Tigers 6 – 4,their sets coming from Richard Wilson and Jim Stamas who got two each but two wins each by Rob Reed and Geoff Salter together with one from Paul Stead and victory for Salter and Stead in the doubles saw the Tigers home. Seaburn Dene moved off the bottom of the table after beating North Shields YMCA A 6 – 4, Rod Roberts winning all three of his sets.
Micky Grimes was in form for Tyne Dock in division one, his unbeaten performance helping Tyne Dock to a 7 – 3 win away to Mortimer. Cramlington Trojans team of Phil Prady, Akshay Pabary and Paul Baines stay top of the division with a 9-1 home defeat of Matfen. Newton B and North Fire B shared the points in a 5 – 5 draw and Byker A who had Adam Curran in their side along with Mark Kimberley and John Donnelly defeated Old England Jacks 9 – 1. Mohinda Rawat got three for Whitehouse Lane but hisside, Whitehouse Lane, went down 6 – 4 away to the North Fire A team of Berry Hill, Frank Lasek and Clive Dewison.
The top two teams in division two both had convincing wins in the second division. Newcastle Community A team of Rixian Hu, Ben Yu, and Ken Lee ran out 10 – 0 winners over their B team and the Blaydon B side of Maurice Cheek, Shirley Gelder and Eddie Coxon won 9 – 1 away to Cramlington Cobras. Birtley also had a big win when they visited Saints. John Rowell was undefeated on the night as his side won 8 – 2.
A 9 – 1 win for Ouston A away to NESLC Codgers kept them in second place in division three behind Newton C. Bill Turnbull and Peter Scott were both too good for the opposition with Norman Badger only losing out to Russell Roper. The third and fourth placed teams, Old England FATTS and North Shields YM C were involved in a close match and it was thanks to Barry Matthews with three wins that Old Englandedged home 6 – 4. Ben D’Arcy got two and Steve Martin one with Steve Todd doing best with two sets for the losers. Three sets from John Morton was not enough for Cramlington Knights who were beaten 6 – 4 by the club’s Dragons for whom Alastair Johnson, Steve Ralph and Ryan Guttridge got two each.
Top match in the fourth division was the clash of the leading two teams, Cramlington Swifts and Cramlington Lions. Tomasz Orzechowski was man of the match with three wins for the Swifts. Greg Bojke got two but with Jim Broadbent winning twice for the Lions and backed up by Ken Brown and Terry Duff who got one each the teams ended up all square at 5 – 5, Broadbent and Brown taking the doubles set. The bottom side Cramlington Falcons gave a good account of themselves against Ouston C despite losing 6 – 4. Matthew Walmsley and Chris Jeffery both beat Bryan Ainley and Fred Storey but Ouston’s Joe Tron was undefeated on the night.
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