Report by Adam Coates
The bottom of the table battle between Walker and Consett 3 in Division 5 was a very well contested fixture that that could have gone either way. Both teams were missing a key player; Walker were without no.2 Henry Darragh, while Consett were without their no.1 Mike Cherryman, although he took the trip to support his team.
It was a strong start for Consett, with their no.5 Ian Worrall-Dutton taking a 3-0 win against Walker newboy Neale, who put up a good fight in his first ever team match.
The no.2 seeds were up next and Steve Drummond, Walker captain, found himself 2-0 down relatively quickly against Chris Warren. Drummond started his comeback in the 3rd, taking it 15-13, but Warren held out in the 4th to win 15-13 and take the match 3-1.
Meanwhile, the number 3s Adam Coates (Walker) and Steve Toal (Consett) were locked in a very close encounter. The first 2 games went to 15-14, with Coates winning the 1st and Toal winning the 2nd. Toal then took the initiative in the 3rd, winning it 15-9. Coates came back firing and took a close 4th game to force a decider. Coates continued his positive play and took the final game 15-7 to win 3-2 and keep Walker in with a chance.
In the match between the no.1 seeds, Dave Parkin (Walker) continued his good form from his previous matches and won 3-0; 15-12, 15-12, 15-9 against Mike Varley. This took the fixture to 2-2.
The final, and deciding match, was between Walker’s Ramsay Refaie and Consett’s Dan Warren. The first game set the tone for the match and went all the way to a tie break at 14-14, which went in Warren’s favour. The next 3 games ebbed and flowed with both players playing well and the fixture rightfully went down to a final game with the score tied at 2 games all. Refaie pushed on in the fifth game and took it convincingly 15-4, to give himself and Walker a 3-2 victory.
Walker just sneaked this very competitive fixture 3-2, taking 15 points to widen the gap between them and Consett 3 at the foot of the Division 5 table.