Barnham take honours in parade of champions
On paper at least the match of the week in Division One of the Norfolk SRA Leagues was at Barnham Broom, where the reigning Norfolk champion and two former champions were in action as the home side defeated visiting Broadland 14-7.
At the bottom of the order, the points were shared as Ian Thompson won 3-0 for Barnham only for John Bird to do the same for the visitors. Simon Howling restored Barnham's lead by beating Matthew Hawkes in straight games only for eight-times former champion Richard Millman to win 3-0 against Sam Hales. The first string match was a repeat of last year's final but the result was different as Matthew Bolt beat Ian Cox 9-6, 3-9, 9-7, 10-8.
Two more former county champions took to the courts at Diss where David Youngs and John Cordeaux filled the first and second string slots for visiting East Anglia, who won 18-7. For the visitors Gary Snelling won 3-1 while Steve Mooney and Cordeaux both won their matches 3-0. For Diss, Tom Bobbins beat Ashley Briggs 3-2, while Neil Cross had one of the best wins of his career in the first string match, beating Youngs 8-10 4-9 9-4 10-8 9-7.
The match at Lime Tree Road between East Anglia III and East Anglia II was close with the seconds just coming out on top 16-10. Paul Gretton beat Brian Hawkes 3-0, while Nigel Gillick had to come from behind to beat Matt Johnson 3-2 and Dave Gouldby beat Tim Allenden 7-9, 9-7, 9-6, 5-9, 9-2 in the first string match.
For the thirds, Hadleigh Farrer beat Simon Cullum 3-2 and Richard Hunt won in straight games.
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Straight game wins for Paul Bradnock and Kevin Harvey, a 3-1 win for Rod Taylor over Steve Rudd, and a 3-2 win for Jordan Creed against Ali Ponder enabled Bannatyne's to win 18-6 at Oasis, whose Paul Atterton had a good 3-1 victory over Max Dawson.
In Division Two, Bannatyne's II had their first win of the season, beating Cromer 16-7. Shaun Nicholas won 3-1 while both Kieran McSweeney and Paul Edwards won in straight games. For Cromer, Richard Keeble beat Rob Green 3-0 and Alex Foster beat Nick Ross 9-7 in the fifth.
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It was a bad week for North Walsham who lost 17-7 away to Barnham Broom III and 14-9 at home to Fakenham. At Barnham, wins for Andre Midlane and Matt Bensley were not enough as Wesley Hicks and Stuart Sutton won 3-0 and Neil Sutton beat James Gair 3-1.
Fakenham's three young players all came out on top. Alex Oliver won 3-1, Adam Sinkins beat Roger Hannant 3-0 and Michael Baron came from 2-1 down to beat James Gair 9-3, 5-9, 3-9, 9-6, 10-8.