Only four points separate the top three teams after the first month of action in the First Division of the Matlock Table Tennis League.
But although it’s tight, the title favourites at present are leaders Rowsley 14, who have won all four of their matches, with Sam Perry unbeaten so far.
Jamie Smith, a former Derbyshire U18 champion, is slowly, but ominously, hitting form for Rowsley too and has produced some cracking forehand play in the last couple of fixtures.
However, Scorpions are hot on their heels after winning their league games in similarly convincing fashion. Their 10-0 thrashing of a strong Cromford Community Centre team suggests they mean business, with Mike Bradbury, Richard Element and Keith Bradshaw all performing admirably.
Scorpions also inflicted a 10-0 loss on Whitworth, who nevertheless remain fourth in the table and continue to be able to call upon the services of Geoff Gill, who remains one of the strongest players in local leagues. Whitworth are involved in two upcoming matches not to be missed -- against Hopes Fulfilled this Sunday (November 22) and Rowsley on Friday, November 27.
At the other end of the table, Cromford Cavaliers remain rooted to the bottom, despite some spirited performances. In a 10-0 defeat at the hands of Hopes Fulfilled, they were on the receiving end of another maximum from Isobel Ashley.
The league’s Second Division is beginning to take shape, with Strutts Strikers leading the way after going five matches without defeat. Glyn Parsons remains near the top of the averages and is ably supported by Mark Melbourne and Derek Pepperell.
Close behind are Liverpooles, who are also unbeaten but have played two fewer games. With Jacob Poole and Anthony Gregory in sparkling form, they are looking forward to taking on Strutts in the coming weeks.
Third and fourth places are occupied by Still Hoping and Young Guns respectively, while Rapid Fire and Wessington have yet to record a win.