Division 2 Round-Up : Week 19
Published 07/03/2020 at 22:16:03 by Martin Johnson; edited 1 times, last on 07/03/2020 at 22:20:48 by Martin Johnson.Division 2 Round-Up – Week 19 (Week 17 in D2)
The penultimate week of League fixtures in Division 2 has seen the top two and bottom two teams confirmed, with the one remaining week of League matches still to decide all of the final positions.
Leaders, Milton Keynes Tornadoes, made in 10 wins on the trot, recording their second 10-0 victory of the season, beating ninth placed Milton Keynes Cavaliers. Trebles here for Nicolas Wong, Tanmay Tijare and Matthew Curley were rarely in any doubt, with only John Bradley managing to take one single game off each of Tanmay and Matthew, thus preventing a whitewash. Nicolas / Tanmay also extended their doubles record to 10 wins out of 13 in beating John / Chris Welch, with Chris Paddon the third Cavaliers player on the night. Tornadoes’ win takes them 12 points clear of second place, meaning they have secured the Division 2 title. Meanwhile, any slim hopes that Cavaliers had of avoiding relegation were thus also dashed, with this result making it 10 matches without a win, and leaves them 17 points adrift of safety with only one match remaining.
Second placed Milton Keynes Hit ‘n’ Hope also had a successful week, albeit not as comfortable as Tornadoes, but won 7-3 in a competitive match against fifth placed Mursley Hawks. Despite the win, it was not quite enough to leave them any chance of catching the leaders, but it was good enough to secure the runners-up spot. Paul Tompkins and Andy Frearson each won their three singles sets, although both needed five games to beat Graham Butcher, whilst Marco Hahn added one further for Hit ‘n’ Hope, with a win over Martin Johnson. For Hawks, Frank Beck and Graham each won once in singles, with Frank / Martin also taking the doubles against Paul / Marco over five games.
Third placed Milton Keynes Classics were involved in an odd match against bottom team, Milton Keynes Blades, as each team was a player short, meaning only five sets could be played. On the night, Classics won the reduced match 3-2, as Barbara Peters won both her singles, with also one win for Nick Markham, but Barbara / Nick were beaten in the doubles by Brian Evans / Tony Coomber. The other point for Blades came when Brian defeated Nick in five games. Blades already knew they would be relegated, prior to this match, but this result leaves them eight points behind Cavaliers, and with only Tornadoes left to play, they now seem certain to finish the season bottom of the table.
Newport Pagnell Lagondas improved their fourth position with their 7-3 win over sixth placed St. Christopher Spitfires, so moving within four points of third spot. Chris Horn collected a maximum for Lagondas, although both Jock Wallace and Andy King pushed him close in five games. Lagondas also had two wins from Glen Davison and one for Roy Read, with Glen / Chris also winning in the doubles against Graham Silversides / Andy King. Spitfires took their points through two wins for Andy, plus one win for Graham.
The final match of the week saw eighth place take on seventh place, as Milton Keynes Shambles hosted Woburn Sands Mosquitoes. As might have been expected, a close match ensued, with the final score a 5-5 draw. More surprisingly, it was a fifth consecutive draw for Mosquitoes! Player of the night was Andy Jenkins of Mosquitoes, who won his three singles, albeit it needed 11-8 in the deciding leg against Paddy Patel. Paddy also lost out in another very close one, going down 11-9 in the fifth to Glenn Barcham, who won two of his singles for Mosquitoes. For Shambles, Jim Robinson picked up two wins, plus the doubles with Simon Green against Andy / Paul Hamer, with the other wins for Shambles coming one each from Paddy and Simon. Combined with other results, it also ensured that both teams will remain clear of the relegation zone.
Player of the Week : Andy Frearson.
Challenge Cup (D2 teams)
In the League’s Challenge Cup, six of the ten Division 2 teams had managed to get through their groups and progress to the knockout stage, however, the first knockout round, played last week, turned out to be a step too far for five of those six teams, with only Mursley Hawks progressing to KO round 2, as they narrowly defeated fellow Mursley team, Strikers, from Division 4, by 14 points. This week will see Hawks look to maintain a Division 2 presence in the Cup, but they have to try to overcome a big 240 point handicap against Division 6 team, Greenleys Knights.