Mid Lancs Week M

Report From Paul Eastham

A reminder that entries close this Sunday 3rd Feb for the levels tournament that is on Sun 10th Feb at Wellfield.

In division 1 this week, Carlton kicked off proceedings with a home fixture against Hawks A, but failed to pick up any points in the 5-13 loss. That ‘pesky’ kid, Nick Hodgson & Andy Owen won all of their 6 games to make sure ALL 4 points went back home.

The ‘Old School’ met again as MGS A had a big match against the leaders of the division, St. Andrews A and it was no surprise when the visitors shot into a quick 2-6 lead after the levels. In the opening mixed Jared Matthew & Becky Ashton won a pair to claw the score back to 4-6 before Andy Fowler & Nicki McGrath won both games in set 6 to open the gap back up again at 4-8. Then in the 7th set, disaster struck for Andy’s as Liz Hot went over on her ankle and had to concede the remaining 4 games with partner Steve Taylor. This immediately set up an 8 all classic in which Joe Steele & Karolyn Hustler held their nerve and won both games to take the match 8-10 & keep Andy’s 3 pts clear at the top of the table. The star on the evening was Andy, he laid* the foundation stone for the win, taking all of his 6 games in the No 3 slot. I do have to say in situations like this, the human sportsmanship kicks in and MGS were brill, they fetched a chair, ice and helped elevate her leg & even attached a note to the card wishing Liz a speedy recovery from the whole MGS team. As Steve texted me, it’s a pleasure to play in a league like this!!!

Hawks B got beat 4-14 by David Lloyd who maintain 3rd place with the 4 point max win as the hosts stay rooted at the foot.

MGS B got thrashed by Cross Feathers, 1-17; only Rob Metcalf & Adrian Greenwood winning the 1 game to stop the whitewash.

In 2, the Hillbilly’s were back at the fort again this week as they did battle with Crusaders B to avoid the dreaded drop and in the very tight match the visitors were 3-5 up after the levels, with Sam Gorrell winning 3 of his 4 Men’s. Garstang then won 4 games in a row to go 7-5 ahead before Victor Chow & Ren Soni won a pair in the 7th the square the match. The 8th was split before Dan Nixon & Steph Tsang won the final 2 games of the match to help win the match 10-8 and open up a 6 point gap between the 2 teams, leaving Clayton in the drop zone. Steph was the POTM who won all of her 6 games to assist in winning 3 vital points.

MGS D had a nail-biter with Carlton B this week and found themselves 5-3 up after some very tight levels games. Simon Bruford & Debbie Balmforth won the opening mixed set for Carlton to square the match at 5 all before Matt Seddon & Lorna Hopper won both games in set 6 to take MGS 2 ahead again. Dave Boon & Jane Parkinson immediately struck back again for Carlton to even the match up again at 7 all. The 8th was split & in the final nerve jangling set, Dave & Jane took both games 5-15 & 14-17 to win the match for Carlton 8-10 who go 3rd. Matt & Lorna won 5 for MGS and Simon won 5 for Carlton to be the best players.

In a rearranged match, Clayton B faced their own A team & failed to get any points in a 2-16 defeat. Azam Sharif, Hannah Parr & Conner Fearnley won all their 6 to be the best players on the night as the team stops in 2nd place in a healthy promotion place.

In division 3, Clitheroe B made their 1st ever trip to the coast this week travelling to Mythop’s venue. They quickly showed why they were top of the Division by flexing their “mussels” & cruised to 7/0 up. Mythop’s 2nd ladies pair Helena Lemper & Pauline Weafer split set 4 to salvage the shipwreck! Jason Lydon, Mythop’s 3rd man was left “up the creek without his paddle” after his racquet was scuttled & his replacement was something of a “Limpet”! In the mixed Mythop found their sea legs & forced 4 split sets to make the final score 13/5. Starfish on the night was Michael Boothman, Clitheroe’s 3rd man, he won all his 6 games. They left on their Charabang singing “Oh I do like to be beside the seaside”! Clitheroe remain 3 pts clear at the top with a match in hand. Another brill report from Pauline again!

Garstang B took on an ‘in form’ St. Andrews C this week and after the levels, the scores were tied at 4 all with Kat Oakes and Colin Marney both winning 3 games each. Then the 2 sides couldn’t be separated as the next 3 sets were split taking the score to 7 all before Garstang took control of the match by winning the remaining 4 games for a final match score of 11-7. The best player on the night was Jen Tsang, she won 5 games to help take the match including the final set games to earn the win.

Hawks D maintained the pressure on the leaders, Clitheroe by winning all 4 points in a 14-4 win over Clayton Crusaders D who remain rooted at the foot of the table. Graham & Anne Robinson won all of their 6 again to be the best pair on the night.

A 5 sided Crusaders C got beat 3-15 by MGS E who remain in 3rd place on the table, but 10 pts off a promotion spot.

Evergreens B took all 4 points in a 15-3 win over Hawks E as Phil Barlow & Susan Bullen took all their 6 games.

In 4, St. Andrews D had a cracking 11-7 win over Preston College with Phil Newsome & Jane Godsland taking all of their 6.

Whittle surged up the table with a 15-3 home win over Evergreens C. Gary Richardson & Simon Wynn won all of their 6 games.

Project 12 had a tight match with Brindle this week and found themselves 5-3 up after the levels with Pernelle Yates taking 3 of her Ladies. Then Jon Jackson & Sarah Coultas built on this by winning the opening mixed set at 7-3 as then the 6th set was split. Then a terrific fightback took place by Brindle as Steve Hudson & Amanda Berry took the 7th and Nick Fish Linda Kozera won the 8th set to leave a nail-biting final set in an 8 all classic. However, in the last set, Jon & Sarah won both games for Project 12 to win the match 10-8 and keep the team in 3rd place on the tables. Jon & Sarah were the best pair, they won all of their 6 games.

Table toppers, Penwortham A had a home clash against 2nd placed team Mythop B and the hosts got off to a good start as they won 6 of the 8 level games on offer with Laura Heaton taking all her 4 Ladies games. Then in the opening mixed sets, Mark Green & Julie Bennett followed by Daniel Copper & Helena Lemper won their games for Mythop to square the match at 6 all. Laura then sprung back into action with partner Alan Benningfield; they won a pair in the 7th to take Penwortham 8-6 back in front. A split set in the 8th was followed by Rory Parkinson & Janet Wood finishing off proceedings in the final set; they won both games to 10 & 7 to wrap up the win at 11-7. The win takes Penwortham 7 points ahead of Mythop on the tables with 2 matches in hand and are firm favourites to go on to lift the shield at the end of the season. Laura was the POTM on the night for her 6 games. During the match, Caroline Coxon fell & broke her wrist & on behalf of the league, we wish her a speedy recovery. Paul.