We are into the final few matches and at the top things are very clear with CLIFFE WOODS 1 led by ALAN BRIDLE are 13 points clear of BOXLEY 1 led by PAUL HOMEWOOD who are 18 points ahead of anyone else. These two teams are capable of taking the giant step to the Premier Division and doing well next season.
At the bottom LUTON INVICTA 4 are doomed but joining them to be relegated is not clear as RAINHAM 1 are only 3 points ahead of PARKWOOD with everything to play for as each play one of the top teams in their final match. Anchorians 2, Howard 4 and Rainham 2 have accumilated enough points to survive this season.
With only a third of the season left four teams are fighting for Promotion and the same number are in a relegation battle.
At the top the Division is led by CLIFFE WOODS 1 with 110 points, followed by Boxley with 103, Anchorians 1 with 97 and Chatham Belfast with 95 points.
At the bottom we have Luton Invicta 4 with 43 points, above them are Anchorians 2 with 53, Rainham 1 also with 53 and Parkwood with 54 points.
It is half way in this exciting season with nothing guarenteed either for promotion or relegation. The top four teams mentioned below are still at least nine points clear of the rest, but CLIFFE WOODS 1 have greater consistancy stretching their lead to an impressive eight points. They have also only lost two doubles games which is always crucial in the final result of each match.
At the bottom no less than five teams are separated by only ten points so the competition here will be no less intense. After Parkwood’s magic last season from a seemingly impossible situation I could not predict who will end up in the bottom two out of Luton Invicta 4, Anchorians 2, Rainham 1, Howard 4 and again the same hero’s from before.
As well as the usual top players such as Charlie Cook, Alan Bridle, Kieth Ludlam and Paul Homewood some interesting new exciting players have joined the fun. GARY HUTCHINSON is in great form for Anchorians and the father/son combination for Boxley of GRAHAM and TOM WINDRAM are both exceptional players. None of these players would be out of place in the Premier Division with Tom being one of the best players to play in Division One being a Kent champion.
Let us hope for more fantastic matches in the second half of the season in the return fixtures. So have a great Christmas and a happy New Year to all table tennis enthusiasts like me.
This month the results have proved what a competitive division it is with teams bunched at both ends of the table. At the top four teams (Cliffe Woods 1, Boxley 1, Chatham Belfast and Anchorians 1) are separated by only 3 points. This battle will continue for the rest of the season with only two guarenteed promotion at the end. At the bottom Luton Invicta 4 is only 4 points adrift of four teams (Howard 4, Anchorians 2, Rainham 2 and Rainham 1) only sparated by 6 points.
CHARLIE COOK is having a magnificent year with twenty out of twenty so far, with only Gary Hutchinson matching this from only six games.
In the doubles results Anchorians 3 and Cliffe Woods 1 are top with a 75% success rate.
After the first five rounds of matches ANCHORIANS 1 lead the division with 42 points, followed by Cliffe Woods 1 (38 pts), Boxley (34 pts) and Chatham Belfast (33pts).
The remaining eight teams are closely packed with the bottom four Anchorians 2, Luton Invicta 4, Rainham 1 and Howard 4 separated by a mere two points.
Star player in October was obviously ALAN BRIDLE who as well as maintaining his unbeaten record also took away three others in Paul Homewood, Graham Windram and Jill Shipton. Others on 100% are Charlie Cook, Kieth Ludlam and Tunde Jotham at this early stage of the season.
Anchorians 1 and Cliffe Woods 1 also lead the way at Doubles with only one loss each with Luton Invicta 4 the only team yet to win a doubles game.
This season I will be providing individual reports alongside the scorecard. But then each month will give an overall picture of the Division here.
It is great to have a full 12 teams (from 8 different clubs) meaning there are no bye weeks in what I believe is a really competitive Division.
It is early days but three teams in Anchorians 1, Boxley 1 and Cliffe Woods 1 look really strong and should be battling it out for promotion. At the other end it is less clear with the other nine teams looking very even at this stage.
There should be lots of exciting matches and great individual performances to report on, so let battle commence.