IT WAS a competitive match that kicked off Division One this week with a considerable smattering of nets and edges which resulted in comments of ‘if only’ on both sides, as Springfield A squeezed past YMCA 25-15.

Brian Hansford (4) used the whole table to great effect in creating some fantastic angles in particular.

Jess Moggeridge (4) played especially well for YMCA in beating Michelle Leonard (4) in five games and it is good to see the juniors competing so effectively.

It is a testament to Andy Millar and the league for working so hard with the lifeblood of the game.

Tim Scott and Andy Pipe both secured maximums for the victors, who continue to put pressure on Budmouth A at the top of the table.

In this week’s ‘Battle of Budmouth’ it was the A-team that came out on top 25-15 over their B-team counterparts.

Moses Lewis (A)(9) was the only player with a maximum but in many ways Ben Howe (B)(8) was the star on the night by beating both Will Jolliffe (5) and Josh Clark (8) and having match points against Lewis which he could not quite convert.

Having come through a tight fourth leg, Lewis played a very clever fifth leg to secure victory.

Robin Prince (B)(4) upset the form book by beating Jolliffe 3-1 and in a hard fought doubles Jolliffe and Lewis came from 2-1 down to clinch it 11-8, 11-9 in the last two legs to give Budmouth A a very handy 25 points in their quest for the title.

Park District A all but secured a top-three finish this season with a dominant 30-6 win at Colliton X.

Richard Wilshere did not drop a leg all evening and with Geoff Ware only dropping two and Mike Doyle three this was a comfortable evening for them.

Raj Lehal scored half of Colliton’s points and also teamed up with Mick Hogan (2) in the doubles for another.

In Division Two Springfield D scored, on the face of it, a comfortable 29-5 win over the girls from Budmouth C.

The scoreline, however, did not really reflect the matches played. Sophie Storey (5), who was playing up from Division Three, lost her opening game 3-0 to Paul Arnold (9) who showed why he is second in the averages but then produced two thrilling five-leg matches.

Every leg of the first match against Paul Manvell went to deuce with Sophie winning the marathon fourth leg 20-18 before winning the final leg 12-10.

In her last match of the evening she went 2-0 down to Gary Ayles (9) before fighting back to win the next two legs until finally losing the last leg 11-6.

A close match at Westfield Arts College saw visitors Wyke A fend off a late Preston A rally to get over the line 23-20.

Wyke B could only field two players in their Division Three encounter with Wey Valley and this was reflected in the 26-6 loss they suffered as a consequence.

When Springfield D lost the second leg of the doubles 11-0 to Preston D, to go 17-17 in the match, it looked like the game was up for the hosts.

However, a superb comeback by Pete Anderson (9) and Barry Thomas (6), against the impressive Roger Winstanley (7) and the evergreen Stan Smith (5), saw the home team snatch the win by the slightly flattering margin of 20-17.

Budmouth D continued their charge for the title with a convincing 26-9 win over the experienced Preston E.

The girls of Budmouth E continued to show their improvement in showing no mercy to bottom team Park District Y with a perfect 30-0 win.