Pain and Pleasure for Cold Norton Club

This week saw the culmination of the Team Handicap Cup competition of the Burnham & District Table Tennis League.  In this event players are given a score handicap to reflect their ranking in an attempt to set a level playing field and allow teams from every division to compete evenly.  Sometimes this works better than others!  This year’s Final was an all Cold Norton affair as their B and C teams battled through several rounds to earn the right for their night of destiny, and the glory that is bestowed upon the victors. 

Holders and long time favourites Cold Norton B got off to a steady start in this year’s Final when Ian wall and Dan Anderson recovered swiftly from their 5 points deficit to score the opening win against Tim Cramphorn and Dick Wyman.  The first singles of the night was a classic as Neil Want (C Team) raised his game and attacked the defensive minded Eric Green (-5).  The first leg went to deuce which Green held, but then Want came back and took the second leg 21-19 – some fantastic rallying with Want often in control but occasionally wayward in the final killer shots.  The final leg saw Want take a decent early lead as Green recovered his handicap.  At 16-11 in Want’s favour Cold Norton C had already marked up their first point of the night, but alas the fat lady hadn’t even warmed up her tonsils yet and Green tidied up his mistakes and went on a run of 7 consecutive points to bring some semblance of balance back to the game.  As the pressure mounted Green steadied and his opponent was found ‘Wanting’.  Green took the final leg 21-18 for a very hard earned point in a game that many observers thought Want should have taken.  Brilliant matchplay all round.  Wall propelled his team into a commanding 3-0 lead with a straight sets victory over Cramphorn in a match that was pretty even in open play but the Wall serve proved accurate and decisive as Cramphorn struggled to return the disguised spin.  The next match was the battle of the Captains.  In the end not much of a warzone as Anderson won out comfortably.  Wyman hit several crowd-pleasing winners but there just wasn’t enough of them against the measured and consistent play from Anderson.  So at 0-4 down in a first-to-five encounter the C Team pairing had it all to do against one of the league’s best double acts in Green & Wall.  The C team volunteers were Want and Cramphorn and they looked a bit sheepish as they entered the arena to much chanting from their travelling supporters.  With a 6 point handicap in their favour the C team duo went full gusto and took a considerable lead into the latter stage of the first leg.  However once the B Team pairing sorted out their concentration levels and realised they were in a battle the points started to rack up and the C Team became a bit crumbly as they managed to pull a defeat from the jaws of victory.  No such crumbliness in the second leg as the game and the Cup were extremely close at 19-19 and then at game point Want coolly dispatches a Green serve back from whence it came for an emphatic finish.  Reeling from this kick in the teeth the B Team came out strongly in the deciding leg and quickly erased their handicap deficit and with few errors in their game built up a commanding lead which they were never going to concede.  A final score of 21-11 to secure the match and the Cup for Cold Norton B.

So Cold Norton B emerge victorious from the Battle of Rega – very deserved winners who retain their trophy and have already been instilled as odds-on favourites for the next few seasons.   Many congratulations to both finalists who will receive their trophies at the upcoming Presentation Dinner, and a massive thank you to the event organiser and chief umpire Mr Alan Scammell.

Pic 1 – Cold Norton B – Team Handicap Champions 2024

Pic 2 – Cold Norton B & C Teams  – Team Handicap Final 2024

Pic 3 – Handicap Final 2024 – Neil Want v Eric Green

Pic 4 – Action from the Handicap Final 2024 – the crucial Doubles match between Cold Norton C and B

Pic 5 – Handicap Final 2024 – Dick Wyman v Dan Anderson

Cold Norton B
Cold Norton B and C
Neil Want and Eric Green
Cup final doubles action
Dick Wyman v Dan Anderson