BUCKS INTER-LEAGUE REPORT
Published 26/11/2019 at 22:09:20 by David Wackrill.DIVISION 1 (courtesy of Nick Howard)
MK “1” fall short of top spot
A brand new team of Alan Cherry, Nick Howard and Gary Deakin trekked over to Aylesbury at an ungodly hour for some table tennis on Sunday.
Gary and Nick needed to dust off their passport for the long journey from Northamptonshire, although with how often Deakin is out of the country, that must be second nature to him by now.
Ironically, after travelling all of that way, the first match was against “MK 2”, consisting of Ollie Horsewell, Ioan Constantin and Tomek Nowakowski.
The 2’s certainly played with a chip on their shoulder, as both Ioan and Tomek upset the odds to take down Nick and Gary - Tomek coming from 2-0 down in both to snatch the victory!
No trouble for Alan, as he recorded a standard three, and with Ollie going winless, it was a 5-4 win for the first team.
The second match saw the first team face Aylesbury’s top team.
Nick was below par yet again to record a though win in 5, and another loss in 5 (which should have been a win!) - Gary stepped it up to come away with 2 wins and a loss, with Alan recording an even better treble.
The claims that Alan is ill this week with flu are completely false - He’s bed bound from carrying his two Northampton team mates all day.
The final match pitted High Wycombe against MK 1, in the battle oft he undefeated. That being said, MK needed a 7-2 victory to secure the win, as High Wycombe had earlier beaten MK 2, 8-1 in their fixture.
Nick got them off to a winning start against Tim, but with Alan losing for the first time that day, it looked to be an uphill struggle.
Howard decided to contribute another win in a close fought match to give MK the advantage before Gary lost his opening. With no more missteps allowed if MK were to win the title, Howard actually won a second for the first time in the day, and with Alan and Gary winning their next matches, did MK dare to dream that they could pull off the impossible from 4-2 up??
Well, if they did, they had a rude awakening as High Wycombe absolute romped the remaining matches to take a well deserved title, and claim the “undefeated” mantra of the day.
Thanks to all of those who played and organised.
And well done to Tim Cheek for steering the ship home for the champions!
RICKY THE MAIN MAN BUT MK FALL SHORT IN TITLE BID
It was literally a day of two halves for our C team playing in Division 2 on Sunday in the annual Bucks County Inter-League Championships. Working to a tight time line to get all the matches in the competition played before 5.00 pm, the brilliantly efficient organiser Mike Atkinson left no space in the schedule for any breaks for food or rest, with many matches overlapping so that as one player in a team was finishing his last set in one match, a team-mate was starting his first set in the next. The pace was relentless and, I beg to say, cost us the title. That said, it was still another great day’s table tennis.
Our team of Ricky Taiwo, Andy Smith and me were on fire in disposing of hot favourites High Wycombe B 5-4 in the opening match with 7 of the 9 (all singles) sets going to a decider. Ricky was sensational, dazzling his opponents not just with his dayglo lemon shirt but with the standard of his play. Tricky Ricky really was outsmarting the opposition with 3 great wins, supported by 1 each from Andy and myself.
We followed this up by cruising into a 5-0 lead against Aylesbury B, at which stage things started to go wrong for us as we entered the 5th hour of play for the day and fatigue became a factor. Andy and I both lost deuce in the 5th sets and Ricky’s legendary concentration wavered for the first time as he inexplicably lost to a player that Andy and I had beaten earlier. We still won that match 6-3 but the cracks were beggining to appear now. Crucially for us, Ricky needed a mini break to recharge his mental batteries.
With High Wycombe B beating Chalfonts, who had earlier taken out Aylesbury B, in the other second round match, the last round was destined to produce a tight finish. I needed to prioritise our playing order to favour our main asset, Ricky, which meant sacrificing the tired legs of Super Veterans Andy and myself earlier in this match than I would have liked. The tactic so nearly paid off as Ricky put in a massive shift for the team, the best I’ve ever seen him play, with 3 more fantastic wins. Sadly though, neither Andy nor I could produce any victories for the team, and so the title went to Wycombe, victors over Aylesbury B, on sets countback. Even just one more set win would have meant a runner-up berth, which was taken by Chalfonts. Unfortunately, 2 wins out of 3 matches was still not good enough for a top 2 finish!! Winless Aylesbury B finished last.