Marsh cross the winning line at last.
WITH seven draws from 14 matches Marsh Con C were fast becoming the draw specialists of the Huddersfield Table Tennis League.
They had not crossed the winning line since January 12, and that was against the division's bottom team.
Perhaps doubts were beginning to creep in. Would they ever win again?
They need not have worried. Last week againstGolcar Lib they dispelled all such fears. They fought their way to 6-0, leading on their way to an 8-2 victory.
It wasn't all plain sailing, as they were pushed all the way with three sets going to a deciding fifth game, another four went to four and in all there were 14 games which went to deuce.
However, Marsh's determination to slay the "draw dragon" saw that they won 12 of them.
It was a cracking match which Marsh Con C deserved to win, but it was scant reward for the efforts of the Golcar trio.
Exemplifying this heroism were the efforts of Roy Crosby who, having retired from the game upon the break-up of his erstwhile team, returned when injury and illness left Golcar a man short.
His 50 per cent average to date is testimony to the fact that he is far too good - and young - to call it a day.
His hitting is as powerful as ever, and his defence, when he is willing to believe in it, as rock solid as before he retired.
Crosby took Keith Hague all the way before losing by 8-11, 10-12, 11-8, 11-3, 18-16. He lost in three straight games to Steven Martin whose 75% average places him comfortably with the top ten and in the penultimate set beat Steve Dunn by 11-7, 11-7, 11-13, 13-11.
Steven Tattersley was Golcar's other winner, again showing determination.
Losing to Steven Martin by 11-7, 10-12, 12-14, 10-12 and Keith Hague by 10-12, 11-8, 9-11, 11-13, having already beaten Steve Dunn by 11-4, 10-12, 11-4, 7-11, 11-5.
However, what of Marsh Con C?
Having justifiably heaped praise on Golcar for their determination, Marsh must be congratulated on their skill and ability, as well as their efforts to throw off their draw specialist mantle.
Keith Hague and Steve Martin were outstanding in winning their three singles matches and together the doubles against Crosby and Tattersley by 12-10, 15-13, 11-2.
Quite different in styles, they are as a team able to cope with whatever most teams can throw at them, as is shown by the fact they haven't lost in the League since October 20.
Hague has his long-distance rolling topspin defence, and his unorthodox backhand drive which time and again catches his opponents out.
Martin, boasts a versatility of shots, speed, angles and guile,which is a pleasure to watch.
Constantly probing his opponents' defences, looking for openings, trying new ploys, tricky little angles and sudden spurts of aggressive action, he employed them all, occasionally failing, but more often than not succeeding.
Steven Dunn completed Marsh's joy when he beat Dave Singleton by 6-11, 11-5, 11-6, 7-11, 14-12.
Singleton's mobility and backhand drive were often dominant, but Dunn's forehand hitting was steady, powerful and penetrating.
Whilst Marsh Con C are not going to trouble the top-three contenders for promotion, they, and stablemates Marsh Con D, will be battling it out to the very end for fourth and fifth place.
In Division Two, a couple of excellent returns for Kingsmith Terriers have opened up existing prospects for them.
Their 8-2 victory over Kingsmith F O B and a 5-5l against league leaders Marsh Con B has moved them up from bottom position to seventh with 57 points.
BIG HITTERS: Kingsmith 'Peel Walker' Table Tennis team. (left to right) Aiden Jewitt, Jim Hodson, Ian Charlton (AC120209Hking-02)
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|Publication:||Huddersfield Daily Examiner (Huddersfield, England)|
|Date:||Mar 14, 2009|
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