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GLCPA GLCPA London Leagues South London and Kent Pool Alliance (SLKPA)
W17-18 week 14 match reports
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  W17-18 week 14 match reports
by: Cocked-Hat, 05-02-2018 12:26 PM (#1)

Rack Pack survive relegation battle

The last league week in the South London & Kent Pool Alliance first division and it was an out and out battle between Fox & Hounds and Eltham Terrace Rack Pack to see who would avoid the relegation play-off.

With the promotion places all decided, focus switched to the lower half of the table and as three points separated the two teams it was always going to be a tense affair.

Fox just edged a slow first set, 3-2 but Rack Pack rallied round and won the next two sets, 4-1 for an overall, 10-5 triumph to keep their Division One status.

Neil Shelton kept Fox in the game by winning a frame in each set, while Rack Pack's Captain, Steve Unwin led from the front, winning both of his frames and he was joined by Graham Levingbird in achieving that feat.

In the end Rack Pack survived with a comfortable eight point gap but Fox were looking anxiously over their shoulders, as CSC Mr's & Miss Q's were creeping up behind them.

CSC started the night six points behind Fox but they were playing bottom of the table and winless, Bellegrove A, so anything could happen.

The first set went one way then the other, with CSC nicking the final frame to take the set, 3-2 and eat into that deficit.

Bellegrove won the first two frames of the second set but CSC fought hard and took the next three frames, for an overall, 6-4 lead.

CSC needed all five frames of the final set to tie with Fox in the table but that was quashed when Bellegrove took the eleventh frame, however CSC didn't let that disappoint them, as they went on to take the last four frames for an overall, 10-5 victory.

Both teams ended with a player on an unbeaten hat-trick, Pat Melia for Bellegrove and CSC's Luke Matthews.

So CSC join Bellegrove in being relegated and Fox & Hounds have to fight it out with the third placed team from Division Two to keep their place in the first division.

While the battle was going on at the bottom of the table, the top two, Sharks and Crayford Social Club Rugrats faced each other.

Sharks were already eighteen points clear at the top but that didn't stop Rugrats taking the first set by 3 frames to 2.

They won the next frame as well but Sharks took the next four to win the set, 4-1 and to go, 6-4 up in the match.

Rugrats levelled the scores by winning the first two frames of the last set but again Sharks came back strongly and took the last three frames to win the match, 9-6 and clinch the title without losing a match.

Sharks have now won back to back promotions and league titles in the SLKPA Winter Seasons, so let's see how they'll fair in the top division next season.

Despite the closeness of the match there was a trio of hat-trick heroes, Ian Cruwys for Rugrats and Sharks' Danny Kent and Kevin Dempsey.

We won't find out exactly who Fox & Hounds will meet in the play-off yet, as SLKPA Division Two have one game left but the current holders of the position are North Heath Social Club, who played the league leaders, Bellegrove Flyers this week.

It was a very close game which Flyers edged, 8-7 and that was enough to put them eighteen points clear at the top of the table, thus crowning them Division Two champions.

North Heath can still mathematically catch New Eltham Club in second but their, 11-4 triumph over Foots Cray Social Club has made it difficult as they are now fifteen points clear with fifteen to play for, you do the maths.

New Eltham have done extremely well in their first season to earn promotion, especially when players like Jeff Bailey and Gary Mason score three out of three and are supported by Gary Dixon and Jamie Phillips, who both won two of their three frames.

Foots Cray did themselves no favours, as they are now fourteen points behind North Heath, so are unlikely to catch them next week, especially as they are playing each other and Academicals have also made it difficult after losing to bottom team, Happy Hustlers this week.

It all started well for Hustlers, winning the first two sets, 3-2 to take a, 6-4 lead into the final set.

Academicals brought it back to within one but Angie Hobbs won her third frame of the evening to leave her team needing just one frame for victory.

They had to wait until the penultimate frame, when George Evans-Vine beat Chris Bracey to give Hustlers their second victory of the season.

Dean Williams won the final frame to give him an unbeaten brace and make the final score, 8-7.

Academicals now need eleven points to catch North Heath and are playing second placed New Eltham next week.

There are still four games to go in the SLKPA Premier Division so nothing has been decided yet and with 27 points separating the top eight, it looks like things are going to go right to the wire.

Unfortunately the bottom two, Bellegrove Social Club and Hustlers B look set for the drop, however it's not mathematically impossible just yet.

Bellegrove have been bottom practically all season, having not won a game yet and this week was no different, going down, 10-5 to Eltham Terrace Nuthouse.

This may have been Bellegrove's best chance for a victory, as they were holding fifth placed Nuthouse five all after the second set but the Nuthouse pulled themselves together and whitewashed the final set to grab the win.

Steve Knight was Bellegrove's player of the night, winning two of his three frames, as did Shane O'Reilly for Nuthouse but Craig Jones and Jon Syta went one better with three frame wins each.

You would never have guessed there were eight places and 42 points between Hustlers B in ninth and Eltham Terrace Rovers at the top.

Hustlers are fighting for their lives and it showed, taking the first set, 4-1 with some great wins and a somewhat fortuitous black from Paul Dawson against one of his former teams.

Rovers came back and won the second set, 3-2 to make it, 6-4 in Hustlers favour and they extended their lead to, 7-4 winning the first frame of the final set.

Frames twelve and thirteen went to Rovers before Elliot Giles won his second frame of the night with a break and dish to level the match at seven all and send it into a final frame decider.

Hustlers Captain, Trevor Biggs broke off and nothing was potted but Ryan Francis soon saw to that, producing a great clearance to give his side the, 8-7 victory and what a way to do it, with two dishes in a row.

Francis and Giles were joined by Chris Hobbis in winning two of their three frames and Lee Osborn won his only frame for Rovers but Hustlers' Dawson went on to win all three frames after his good fortune in the first.

Rovers are now six points clear at the top, after Hotshots failed to beat Eltham Terrace Club A.

Despite a break and dish from both Tony Bolt and Danny Kelliher, Hotshots still succumbed by 9 frames to six.

Terrace's Dan Heinink was the player of the night, winning all three of his frames.

This win puts Terrace in fourth and seven points behind their opponents but just two points behind Bellegrove in third, after they beat Hustlers Simply Lovleh, 10-5 this week.

This defeat leaves Simply Lovleh in seventh place, on the same amount of points as Pickwick in eighth.

Pickwick met Hustlers A in a tight match that was level at five all after the second set, which went on to seven all, before Jordan O'Connor secured the final frame and an, 8-7 victory for Hustlers.

Hustlers are now seven points ahead of both Pickwick and Simply Lovleh, who are just one point away from 100.

For more information on the SLKPA including league tables visit our website at www.slkpa.com or contact our Secretary, Paul Gafa on 07443 456662 or secretary@slkpa.com with any queries.
 
You can't hurry a craftsman.
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