Senior British League Round 4

Post date: Feb 19, 2019 9:48:8 PM

Ravenscroft Senior British National League Report Weekend 4 2018/19 Season

The penultimate weekend of action of Senior British National League action was extremely successful for the Ravenscroft-backed Guernsey table tennis teams.

The first team, competing in the lofty heights of the Championship Division, which is the 2nd tier of table tennis within the structure of the leagues, were expected to have a tough time during this shorter penultimate round of fixtures contested at the Corby Smash Table Tennis Centre in Northamptonshire.

This was due to the fixtures in question which came against the 2 x sides leading the Division prior to the start of the action and the fact that heavy 8-0 and 7-1 defeats were inflicted during the earlier meetings with these high quality sides.

The Sarnian quartet led by Garry Dodd and also including Joshua Stacey, Lawrence Stacey and the returning Ben Foss produced some exemplary performances on the day and incredibly went unbeaten, earning 3 valuable points in their battle for survival in the Division.

Having doubled their points tally for the season in just 2 fixtures, they are now just a single point behind the 2 sides above them in the table. It gives them a fighting chance of remaining in the Division when they contest the final 4 fixtures of the season in March.

The first fixture came against the might of Whitworth Academy I, the side that has held top spot in the Division all season. Lawrence has been in impressive form locally, having won the previous 2 Open singles competitions and he was also the best performer in this fixture due to an unbeaten match. He started with an impressive straight sets win over England number 58 Mark Short, but left his best for his final encounter against England number 38 Simon Noutch, where he impressively won in 4 sets. The CI number 1 Dodd narrowly lost out to Noutch 11-9 in the 5th set of their encounter, but he more than made up for it with a sensational victory over the strongest player in the Division, Kim Daybell. Part of the Team GB Paralympic squad, England number 18 Daybell is a force to be reckoned with and was top of the averages before the start of the weekend. Dodd was near his best during an excellent straight sets victory. Joshua picked up the final victory with a pivotal 5 set victory over England number 57 Sam Perry, 15-13 the score in the final end.

There was no letting up from the Island side in the next fixture against another strong outfit in Wymondham, who were in 2nd position prior to the weekend. A superb 5-3 victory was achieved and it was spearheaded by Dodd, who carried on where he left off against Daybell, with another 2 strong wins. He overcame Amirul Hussain and Gaurav Aravind, ranked 53 and 46 in England respectively, dropping just the single end to Hussain in the process. Lawrence defeated Ian Mclean in 4 sets, whist twin Joshua overcame Aravind in straight sets. Foss picked the perfect time to win his first match of the weekend as he battled past Jeremy Banks in 5 sets to complete the win.

The final fixture of the season in March is against the side just 1 point ahead of them in the table, namely Kingfisher I and that could prove to be a crucial fixture in deciding whether the side can remain competing in this strong Division.

Ravenscroft II on the other hand are competing in National C-6 in Fareham and they are in a strong position in 3rd place in the table currently.

The youthful team of Dan Collenette, Ryan Bichard, Matthew Casey and Ryan Gilson started the weekend well with a narrow 5-4 triumph over bottom placed side Brighton City III. Gilson contributed well to this win by defeating Francesco Fassari and Max Wilson over 4 sets. Casey defeated Wilson in straight sets, whilst Bichard was the other singles victor over Fassari in 4 sets. The inclusion of a doubles rubber in Divisions lower than the Championship has suited the Sarnian team well this season as victories have been obtained in the majority. The same happened here as the vital match was won strongly by Bichard and Collenette over the tough combination of Brandon Bennett and Matthew Johnson in straight sets.

The final match of the weekend resulted in a 6-3 defeat to 4th placed side Waterside II. Collenette bounced back from his singles defeats to Brighton to go unbeaten. He overcame Paul May and William Poulter in 5 sets as well as again teaming with Bichard to win the doubles against Cameron Brealey and John Quinn in straight sets. Unfortunately no other wins could be gained, however 2 other 5 set encounters went the way of the Waterside outfit. Casey lost to Quinn 12-10 in the deciding end, whilst Bichard succumbed 11-4 in the decider of his clash with Brealey, which he had led 2-1.

The final weekend of action of the season takes place on 16-17 March.

Ravenscroft I

10th out of 10 teams.

1 win, 1 draw.

Garry Dodd – 3 wins out of 4

Lawrence Stacey – 3 wins out of 4

Joshua Stacey– 2 wins out of 4

Ben Foss – 1 win out of 4

Ravenscroft II

3rd out of 8 teams

1 win, 1 loss

Daniel Collenette – 2 wins out of 4

Ryan Gilson – 2 wins out of 4

Ryan Bichard – 1 win out of 4

Matthew Casey – 1 win out of 4