Arthingworth pull out after tragic death

Kyle Murie helped Corby B beat Rothborough Arrows 6-4
Kyle Murie helped Corby B beat Rothborough Arrows 6-4

The Premier Division of the Kettering & District Table Tennis League will be a team light after Arthingworth pulled out following the tragic death of captain Chris Gibbons last month.

He passed away during their home match with Westfield A and for practical and emotional reasons, the side have now decided they cannot compete this season.

The league passed on their thanks Gerald Henson and his squad for their help in reaching a decision in what has been a tough time, losing a close and long-time friend.

Arthingworth’s withdrawal, coupled with the unavailability of Westfield’s Weavers Leisure Centre venue, meant only three games were played in the division.

Helen Watts’ tremendous hat-trick proved to be in vain as Rothborough Arrows went down 6-4 to Corby B.

Watts’ treble was added to with a single win for brother Martin, who beat Kyle Murie but went down in five ends to Aaron Moore and Guy Sparrow having led in both matches.

Murie picked himself up to defeat Ivor Jones, before teaming up with Sparrow to seal the match-winning doubles.

Former Commonwealth Games silver medallist Colin Wilson marked his Kettering League debut with a fine treble as Corby Smash saw off town rivals Corby A 7-3.

Wilson was pushed by Chris Haynes and Kyle Murie to four ends, while Tony West added a brace.

Haynes picked up a double himself, and was unlucky not to claim a doubles victory with Nigel Hunt as they lost out 11-6 in the deciding end.

Higham regained top spot with a resounding 9-1 win over Burton Baptist B.

Richard Elliott and Mark Nannery were largely untroubled as they picked up maximums, with Baptist’s single point coming from Jacek Koltuniuk.

He came from 2-1 down to beat Richard Bashford 11-4, 11-9 and pick up a fine win.

Results: Corby B 6 (Moore 2, Sparrow 2, Murie, Murie/Sparrow) Rothborough Arrows 4 (H Watts 3, M Watts), Corby A 3 (Haynes 2, Hunt) Corby Smash 7 (Wilson 3, T West 2, M West, Wilson/M West), Burton Baptist B 1 (Koltuniuk) Higham 9 (Elliott 3, Nannery 3, Bashford 2, Elliott/Bashford).

Team of the week: Corby Smash.

Player of the week: Helen Watts.

Thrapston Eagles kept their hopes of a return to the top tier intact after a comprehensive 9-1 victory over club rivals Thrapston Falcons in Division One.

Falcons were weakened by the unavailability of Ian Baldock and an injury to Nigel Payne during his a four-game loss to Ian Donaldson which resulted in him giving Mark Stockley a walkover.

Stockley claimed easy wins over Antony Marray and Alan Tyler and while Donaldson also achieved a treble, he had to work much harder for it.

Marray’s win over Chris Warliker was Falcons only point as they moved down from third to sixth place.

Westfield C jumped to second place after returning to winning ways with a surprisingly one-sided 9-1 win over Burton Baptist C.

Steve Hobbs showcased his standing as one of the best players in the division, winning all of his matches 3-0 and conceding an average of just under six points per game.

Nitin Patel was made to work harder for his treble, especially against David Simmons where he scraped through 11-7 in the fifth game.

Westfield’s dominance was only interrupted in the fifth rubber with a 3-0 win for Paul Goodman over Paul Malpass.

Rothborough Comets’ tie with Harborough B looked a mis-match on paper, but the experience of playing at a higher level may finally be paying off for Comets as they had their most competitive match so far.

They may have lost 9-1 but five matches had to be decided by a fifth set.

Lauren Ainsworth featured in two of these marathon encounters and finally got her team their first point of the season with a deciding 13-11 win over Sam Burgess who is 40 places above her in the ranking list.

Burton Baptist D moved up to fourth place despite losing 6-4 to Thrapson Kites.

Kites captain Peter Briggs led by example, winning all three singles and teaming up with Stewart Williams to claim the doubles.

Derek Muggleton was Burton’s best player as he beat both Williams and Geoff Judd, who picked up a brace.

It was honours even as Harborough C drew 5-5 with Corby C.

Sam Burgess was the stand out player winning his treble without losing a game with Jamie Burgess and Mark Pearson both gaining a singles win over Keith McLaren.

Dan Bottrill has so far acquitted himself well in his first season in this division and he picked up 3-2 wins over the younger Burgess brother, with Stephen Woolston chipping in with two wins over the same players.

Harborough D beat Rothborough Buccaneers 7-3 in a match which could be considered a relegation battle.

Rhys Emery scored a fantastic treble for Harborough, with each Buccaneers player scoring a solitary singles win.

Ivor Jones beat Phil Dixon to prevent the Harborough man joining Emery on the treble trail, leaving Buccaneers in ninth and Harborough D 10th.

Results: Harborough C 5 (S Burgess 3, J Burgess, Pearson) Corby C 5 (Bottrill 2, Woolston 2, Bottrill/Woolston), Harborough D 7 (Emery 3, Dixon 2, Allington, Emery/Dixon) Rothborough Buccaneers 3 (Saywood, Lewis, Jones), Burton Baptist C 1 (Goodman) Westfield C 9 (Hobbs 3, Patel 3, Malpass 2, Hobbs/Malpass), Rothborough Comets 1 (Ainsworth) Harborough B 9 (Crook 3, Brocklebank 3, S Burgess 2, Brocklebank/Crook), Thrapston Eagles 9 (Stockley 3, Donaldson 3, Warliker 2, Stockley/Donaldson) Thrapston Falcons 1 (Marray), Thrapston Kites 6 (Briggs 3, Judd 2, Briggs/Williams) Burton Baptist D 4 (Muggleton 2, Agg, Smith).

Team of the week: Westfield C.

Player of the week: Steve Hobbs.

Corby D inflicted Rothborough Dakotas’ first defeat to keep in touch at the top of the table in Division Two.

Corby’s hero was Ken Knott with a first treble for the loss of just one end, adding the doubles which he won with the otherwise unlucky Nathan Brown to ensure a 6-4 victory.

Tom Cardwell matched the promoted Helmut Salander’s brace but the latter won the battle between the two of them, albeit in five ends.

The 8-2 scoreline belied the scoresheet when Burton Baptist B beat Old.

When the unbeaten records of Beth Tyler and Harry Lade met in the eighth game something had to give.

Tyler started strongly with the first two ends but Lade replied with the next two before it was decided 11-9 in the favour of Lade, ensuring he maintained his 100 per cent record and his team’s win on the night.

Colleagues Jon Sanders and Jacob Tattersall won a pair each and teamed up for the doubles, the point that gives Burton the lead at the top of the table.

Harborough E were also 8-2 winners, this time over Westfield D, leaving them rooted to the foot of the table.

Sidney Wright and Evie Elliott got the visitors off to a flying start but that was as good as it got as John McGowan’s third maximum from four games, coupled with a pair each for Ron Palfrey and Ben Baker, keep the Church Langton outfit in the higher reaches of the table.

McGowan’s return and Baker’s improved results have been a big factor with five from 12 this year compared to two from 27 last year, and they fittingly teamed up for the doubles victory for the second consecutive week.

A first victory of the season for Kettering Town B was driven by Ann Woolston’s excellent early-season form.

Her first hat-trick was hard fought, requiring fifth-end victories against debutant Jamie Kain – coming from two ends down to lose 13-11 in the fifth in his first-ever game – and Sally Taylor, but only requiring four ends against Lee Mordecai who was Exocets’ only singles scorer.

Unusually the team losing heavily won the doubles when Mordecai teamed up with Sally Taylor to win in four but the result draws Town level with Exocets in the table.

Results: Corby D 6 (Knott 3, Cardwell 2, Brown, Knott) Rothborough Dakotas 4 (Salander 2, Rowbotham, Yeomans), Harborough E 8 (McGowan 3, Baker 2, Palfrey 2, Baker/McGowan) Westfield D 2 (E Elliott, Wright), Old Village 2 (Tyler 2) Burton Baptist E 8 (H Lade 3, Sanders 2, Tattersall 2, Sanders/Tattersall), Rothborough Exocets 3 (Mordecai 2, Mordecai/Taylor) Kettering town B 7 (An Woolston 3, Chatburn 2, Davis 2)

Team of the week: Corby D.

Player of the week: Ken Knott.