Meikle hits great form

by Brian Croasdale

You know it is not going to be your day when you hit so many apparent winners and the ball keeps coming back and back.

Mike Bradbury, last year’s Mens Singles champion, could not do much about the alpha-male hitting of Jake Meikle.

Jake wrestled the title from the holder in a classic match with outstanding play. This loss hurt Mike and his answer was, as it always has been, to play more and train harder.

Such was the intensity of debate over the women’s increase in entries, but it was still two familiar faces who reached the final. Pat Thorley defeated Melissa Slaney and retained her title.

Anyone who has spent any time watching the Finals Night could not fail to be impressed by the standard of play, which has definitely moved a step higher. Full details of the results can be found at www.mdtta.hitsports.com.

With the Division One title in the hands of Rowsley 08 and the Division Three title going to May B’s, it was only the Division Two title left to be decided.

Ever Hopefuls are best known for winning quite convincingly and in their last match it was no different. They beat Balls of Fury 9-1, gaining enough points to take the title.

Phillip Fisher (three) was again unbeaten but it was a ruthless performance by Louis Gay (three) that caught the eye and takes the Man of the Match award.

Over the past season, I have been intrigued enough to ask “What has happened to Pommy” but as always they confound expectations by disposing of Rapid Fire 6-4 to finish on a high. Peter Davis (three) was the best performer and his maximum was expertly achieved.

The May B’s played their last fixture against Hit & Miss combination of Bradley Vallance and Ryan White. A fixture May B’s would have won quite comfortably a few weeks ago was anything but. Bradley put the straight sets loss against Sam May (one) in the Division Three final behind him to reverse the score, winning this time. A further five-game loss by Sally May to Ryan White meant May B’s were two sets down before they got going but a recovery meant they took the next three to gain a narrow 3-2 win.

Connor Davies didn’t know the half of it as he arrived to play the Power. His performance was going to show the spectators just how this lad has progressed. He won both his matches and helped take the doubles.

n Will all players remember that the Junior Tournament will take place at the Whitworth Academy this Friday so please get entries in as soon as possible. I predict it now that it will be an increased entry in the Matlock Table Tennis Association next season so the entry forms will go out earlier than normal.

Jake Meikle brings a refreshing infectious energy to the game and some of the youngsters could do well to watch his approach to table tennis.