Ravenscroft Senior British National League Weekend 2 Preview 2016/17 Season
The Islands leading table tennis players are returning to British National League action this weekend, with the second round of fixtures of the 2016/17 season being contested.
The Island’s 3 teams operate under the mantle of Ravenscroft, due to the support of the CI based stockbroking and investment Management Company and achieved good success during the opening round of fixtures back in September.
The first team heads the way in National B-3 alongside Fusion II, whereas the second string side is in a similar position in National C-4 where they are locked at the top with the Scottish based side, North Ayrshire II.
Ravenscroft I have their hands full straight from the offset at the Kingfisher Table Tennis Club in Reading, as their opener will see them come face to face with the previously mentioned Fusion II side, who also came away with a quartet of wins in September. The Fusion side used 6 different players during the opening round of fixtures and they have a wealth of players to choose from across the age brackets. The majority of their players are in or around the top 200 in England, with each capable of producing strong performances.
The next 2 matches are against the sides currently occupying 4th and 5th positions in the table, Finsbury and Ellenborough respectively. It will be important for the Sarnians to come away with good results in these fixtures should they wish to push for promotion. Finsbury’s Vietnamese player Sam Do won 7 of his 8 singles matches last time out and will be a tough nut to crack, whereas the top Under 18 Junior female player in the UK, Denise Payet, could be a difficult opponent for Ellenborough if she turns out for the fixture.
The final match of the weekend is a repeat of the opening fixture of the season against BAATS III. The last match saw a 7-3 win obtained, however it was the dangerous Tony Halling that proved the only real opposition. Halling contributed to all 3 of his side’s rubbers and the Essex based player lost just the 1 singles match during the opening round of matches.
Ravenscroft II on the other hand have already played against the side that they are level at the top with, North Ayrshire II and that fixture was an epic encounter that lasted almost 5 hours and ended as a 5-5 stalemate.
The local side will be competing against sides residing in 4th, 5th, 7th and 8th this weekend and will be looking to build on their impressive start to the season.
5th placed side Ormesby V are first on the agenda and vocal defender Ryan Nassau is known to the side and the Cleveland based player has lost just 1 match thus far.
4th placed side and venue hosts Halton IV are next up on Saturday and due to being venue hosts and there being 2 Divisions contested at the venue in Widnes, the amount of players at their disposal is wide. Connor Whitehead looks a solid player and he won all 8 of his matches during the opening weekend. He also stepped up and competed in the Premier Division against North Ayrshire I in October, so should be in good form and a tricky player to overcome.
7th placed side and new entrants Bishop Auckland are the first match on Sunday and of the 5 players to have competed for them, there is just one that has a winning record of 50% or higher, belonging to Cumbria’s James Neal, who won 2 of his 4 matches. A strong result is the desired outcome in that clash and it could be needed come the end of the season, where games difference could decide proceedings.
Finally the last clash of the weekend is a repeat of the opening fixture of the season, with Guernsey’s junior Ravenscroft III team the opposition. A 10-0 whitewash was achieved for the leading side first time out, however the junior players have all been showing signs of improvement during the year due to their continued participation in the top flight of the local leagues.
The junior side are also competing against Bishop Auckland and will look to get one over on the side directly above them in the table. They also have a match against Ormesby VI and despite the Middlesbrough side being in 3rd spot currently, they are a side made up of junior players, which should suit the Guernsey players owing to the open match play style most are used to from Junior British League action in previous seasons.
Second Weekend Sides
1. Garry Dodd (Team Captain)
2. Olly Langlois
3. Joshua Butler
4. Joshua Stacey
1. Lawrence Stacey
2. Alex Robinson
3. Paul Hainsworth (Team Captain)
4. Ben Foss
1. Ryan Bichard
2. Luke Bichard
3. Daniel Collenette
4. Joseph Bourgaize
Ravenscroft Fixtures (2nd Weekend)
Ravenscroft I – National B-3
Kingfisher Table Tennis Club
12 November 10:30 Ravenscroft I v Fusion II
12 November 14:30 Finsbury v Ravenscroft I
13 November 10:00 Ravenscroft I v Ellenborough13 November 14:00 Ravenscroft I v BATTS III