Last weekend was an important one for Barrow II, as the team aimed to realise their ambition for promotion to Division 1 North of the British League. With a perfect record going into the weekend, Barrow II were the favourites. Though tough opposition, particularly in the form of Drumchapel Glasgow III and title contenders Chesterfield stood in the way.
Barrow II vs. Woodfield
Barrow II’s previous fixture against Woodfield ended in a 6-2 victory for the Barrow team. On that occasion, Woodfield’s Andy Rich claimed the scalps of Barrow’s Jonathan Crawford and Scott Crawford. The Crawford brothers will have been relieved to see Rich missing for this match.
Jonathan Crawford was simply too strong for Leigh Hipkins (11-4, 11-4, 11-4) and Scott Crawford overcame the tricky John Collymore (6-11, 11-6, 12-10, 11-8). A nervy Tristran Swan got the better of Liam Farmer (12-10, 11-5, 9-11, 11-9) and stepping in for the injured Tom Smith, Graham Coupe was quick to prove his worth and get his name on the score sheet with a battling win over Jarendra Patel (5-11, 6-11, 12-10, 11-9, 11-3) to give Barrow II a faultless 4-0 start.
The second half went much the way of the first with Jonathan Crawford beating John Collymore (11-7, 11-9, 10-12, 11-9), Swan beating Hipkins (11-4, 9-11, 11-8, 11-5) and Scott Crawford beating Patel (11-9, 11-9, 11-7). Coupe was close to an impeccable start, but was in need of a couple of extra points to get the better of Farmer (9-11, 11-9, 9-11, 9-11).
Match Score: Barrow II 7 – 1 Woodfield
Barrow II: Jonathan Crawford (2), Scott Crawford (2), Tristran Swan (2), Graham Coupe (1)
Woodfield: John Collymore (0), Leigh Hipkins (0), Jarendra Patel (0), Liam Farmer (1)
Barrow II vs. Drumchapel Glasgow III
Barrow II won the previous encounter with Drumchapel Glasgow III 8-0, a score line that took even the Barrow team by surprise. Barrow II certainly weren’t expecting things to be as easy this time against a young and dangerous Drumchapel Glasgow III.
From the start, the match didn’t go to plan as Scott Crawford failed to penetrate the sharp looking Drumchapel Number 1 Calum Main (11-7, 11-13, 9-11, 5-11). Thankfully for Barrow, the ship was steadied as brother Jonathan Crawford stepped into the court showing the sort of form that has deserted him for much of the season. Jonathan beat the much-improved Scott Barton (11-7, 11-5, 16-14).
Graham Coupe was on fire as he produced possibly his best win to date against Nathan Courtney (11-9, 5-11, 12-10, 3-11, 11-7) to put Barrow II back on track. With the Barrow team visibly lifted and once again buoyant, Tristran Swan fed of the mistakes of Andrew McFadyen (13-11, 11-6, 11-5) to give Barrow II a 3-1 lead at the halfway point.
Jonathan Crawford then went on to produce his best table tennis of the season. Hitting the ball sweet and at times with unreturnable venom, Jonathan always looked in control as he beat Drumchapel’s Main (11-6, 11-4, 3-11, 11-8). Scott Crawford then overcame Courtney (11-5, 15-13, 13-11), whilst Swan didn’t have an answer for the serves and short play of Barton (12-14, 6-11, 6-11). For Coupe, a satisfying afternoon was concluded with a superb win over McFadyen (10-12, 11-5, 11-6, 11-6) to give Barrow II a very respectable 6-2 win.
Match Score: Barrow II 6 – 2 Drumchapel Glasgow III
Barrow II: Jonathan Crawford (2), Scott Crawford (1), Tristran Swan (1), Graham Coupe (2)
Drumchapel Glasgow III: Calum Main (1), Scott Barton (1), Nathan Courtney (0), Andrew McFadyen (0)
Barrow II vs. Chesterfield
Barrow II’s previous encounter with Chesterfield is what defines the standings at the top of the table. On that occasion, a strong team of Bradley Evans, Jonathan Crawford, Scott Crawford and Steve Dixon took the fixture 5-3 to give Barrow II a two-point advantage at the top of the table.
This time around, Barrow II had a very different lineup against an unchanged Chesterfield (William Cooney, Andy Henry, Andrew Horsefield, Mark Short). As such, this match had the potential to be a game of two halves. With Barrow II on paper boasting a stronger 1 and 2 and Chesterfield greater depth at 3 and 4, a draw looked to be on the cards and it is this that Barrow were playing for.
To start, Chesterfield’s Andy Henry struggled to read Jonathan Crawford’s deceptive serves (11-4, 11-6). Come the third set, he seemed to have the hang of them (8-11). Although Jonathan wasn’t playing as well as the previous day, he managed to close Henry out in the fourth set to give Barrow II a very important early lead (11-9).
Barrow’s lead was extended as Scott Crawford held his nerve after loosing the first set to Will Cooney (9-11, 11-7, 11-7, 11-5). As expected, Tristran Swan went down to the consistent Mark Short (4-11, 10-12, 8-11) and Graham Coupe lost out to the intelligent play of Andrew Horsefield (7-11, 5-11, 5-11). This left the match score 2-2 at the halfway point and Barrow II needing two more games to more or less guarantee them the title.
In the first of two crunch games for Barrow, Chesterfields Cooney failed to convert chances, aiding Jonathan Crawford to victory (14-12, 11-9, 12-10). Tristran Swan then failed to get the better of Andy Henry to leave the match perilously tight at three a-piece.
In possibly the most entertaining match of the weekend, much to the delight of the Barrow team, Scott Crawford got the better of Andrew Horsefield (11-8, 12-10, 11-4) to guarantee Barrow a valuable draw and possibly the title. This lifted any pressure off Coupe as he faced Short. Despite a strong start by Coupe (10-12), Short went on to control the game and earn Chesterfield the conciliation of a draw (2-11, 6-11).
Match Score: Barrow II 4 – 4 Chesterfield
Barrow II: Jonathan Crawford (2), Scott Crawford (2), Tristran Swan (0), Graham Coupe (0)
Chesterfield: William Cooney (0), Andy Henry (1), Andrew Horsefield (1), Mark Short (2)
Barrow II vs. Ormesby III
To start, Ormesby’s Karen Shepherd played an excellent and effective counter-hitting game against Barrow’s Scott Crawford. However, Crawford managed to hang on and clinch the game in a dramatic 5th set (14-12, 9-11, 6-11, 11-6, 11-9). Jonathan Crawford then proceeded to ease past Martin Rutter (11-5, 12-10, 11-5) and Graham Coupe beat Michael Young (11-6, 10-12, 11-5, 11-9). Tristran Swan then battled through against Chloe Whyte (11-9, 8-11, 11-6, 5-11, 11-5) to guarantee Barrow the draw they needed to win the division.
The second half of the game followed the first. Once again Karen Shepherd played well, but lost out to Jonathan Crawford (11-9, 12-10, 12-10). Scott Crawford beat Michael Young (11-9, 11-6, 11-9), Tristran Swan did well to fight back and beat Martin Rutter (11-13, 10-12, 11-5, 11-5, 11-5) whilst Graham Coupe frustrated Chloe Whyte (11-5, 11-9, 12-14, 11-8) to earn Barrow II a convincing 8-0 win.
Match Score: Barrow II 8 – 0 Ormesby III
Barrow II: Jonathan Crawford (2), Scott Crawford (2), Tristran Swan (2), Graham Coupe (2)
Ormesby III: Karen Shepherd (0), Martin Rutter (0), Michael Young (0), Chloe Whyte (0)
This weekend, at Draycott and Long Eaton Table Tennis Centre, the champions of Division 2 North of the British League will be decided.
Occupying pole position, Barrow II have spent the last week preparing. Despite being undefeated so far, the team have a slender 2-point advantage over Chesterfield and the youthful Barrow team understands there is no leeway for slip-ups.
Over the weekend, Barrow II will face some tough opposition from: sixth placed Woodfield I, third placed Drumchapel Glasgow III, second placed Chesterfield (championship deciding game) and seventh placed Ormesby III.
British League Division 2 North First Weekend Table
British League Division 2 North Results
British League Division 2 North Barrow Player Averages
Last weekend, Barrow II began their quest for promotion from Division 2 North of the British League. An all Barrow team consisting of Jonathan Crawford, Scott Crawford, Tristran Swan and Tom Smith supported by Garstang based Graham Coupe entered Hynburn Sports Centre in Accrington ready to face all that awaited.
Sheffield vs Barrow II
Barrow II started the weekend against long time opposition and the familiar faces of Sheffield.
Scott Crawford and brother Jonathan got the team off to a good start with a win a piece against Bill Grant and Pete Morgan. Tom Smith then entered the court, but seemed to have left his usual fighting spirit and confidence behind him as he didn’t look up for the game against Jack Grant which he lost. Tristran Swan then returned Barrow II to winning ways with a convincing win against Liam Carson to leave the match score 3-1 to Barrow at the halfway point.
Jonathan and Scott continued as they started, scoring convincing wins over Bill Grant and Jack Grant. The lower end of the team then failed to match the top order as Tristran Swan went down to Pete Morgan and Tom Smith suffered a disappointing defeat in the hands of Liam Carson.
Barrow II vs Derwent II
Barrow II’s second and final game of the first day was against Derwent II, a team that will be battling for survival this season and therefore a must win. Despite his poor display in the morning, it was decided to give Tom Smith a chance to redeem himself and turn his game around.
Barrow II got off to a storming 7 – 0 lead with Jonathan Crawford beating Mick Wilcockson and Richard Moss, Scott Crawford beating Richard Moss and Richard Breary, Tristran Swan beating Doug Bartel and Mick Wilcockson and Tom Smith beating Richard Breary. Once again, Tom Smith didn’t look his usual self and failed to crank the gear shift as he suffered a bad loss against Doug Bartel.
Final Score: Barrow II 7 – 1 Derwent II
Barrow II: Jonathan Crawford (2), Scott Crawford (2), Tristran Swan (2), Tom Smith (1)
Derwent II: Richard Moss (0), Mick Wilcockson (0), Richard Breary (0), Doug Bartel (1)
Barrow II vs Halton II
Barrow II’s second day started with the toughest fixture of the weekend and surprise package Halton II. During the close season, Halton have signed a number of players meaning one-time first team players moving down to the second team.
Barrow II couldn’t have got off to a better start as Jonathan Crawford ‘grannied’ Jake Shaw in the first set of the first game. For those unfamiliar with the term, ‘to granny’, it is to beat someone game 0. This didn’t prove to be a fluke, as Jonathan went on to win the game convincingly. Jonathan was once again backed up by brother, Scott, who scored a good win over Chris Ford. Tristran Swan once again failed to take his chances against Pawel Orzechowski and despite a fighting performance, Graham Coupe lost to strong opposition in the form of Keith Bird. At the halfway point this left the match tied 2 apiece. For Barrow II to win and keep their promotion dreams on course, they needed to win 3 out of the remaining 4 games.
Jonathan Crawford comfortably overcame Chris Ford and in a crucial game Tristran Swan beat Jake Shaw. Thankfully, Barrow II didn’t have to wait to the final game for victory to be sealed as Scott Crawford decisively beat Keith Bird. With the pressure relieved this gave the opportunity for Graham to play ‘his game’ against Pawel Orzechowski. However, on this occasion it was Pawel that enjoyed the honours.
Final Score: Barrow II 5 – 3 Halton II
Barrow II: Jonathan Crawford (2), Scott Crawford (2), Tristran Swan (1), Graham Coupe (0)
Halton II: Chris Ford (0), Jake Shaw (0), Keith Bird (1), Pawel Orzechowski (2)
Woodfield I vs Barrow II
Going into this game, a tough decision had to be made. Graham Coupe had battled hard and played well in the morning. Tom on the other hand had failed to perform and justify his selection the day before. Despite this, it was once again decided to give Tom Smith another chance to prove himself.
Barrow II started the game in uncharted territory. For the first time over the weekend, the team went behind as Scott Crawford suffered a surprise defeat in the hands of Andy Rich. A lot of credit has to go to Andy as he played sensationally. Scott simply didn’t have the power to break his solid defensive style.
Jonathan Crawford then went on to the table and scored an easy win against John Collymore. This was matched by Tom Smith as he returned to winning ways beating Leigh Hipkins. Tristran Swan extended Barrow II’s lead to 3 – 1 with a sometimes nervous win over Tom Savary.
Jonathan then faced his brother’s slayer, Andy Rich. After some incredible and intense rallies it was Andy Rich that ran out the surprise victor. As Jonathan came off the table he confessed he didn’t have a game plan and for the first time a whiff of tension drifted through the Barrow II camp.
In must win games, Scott Crawford easily beat Leigh Hipkins and a much more relaxed Tristran Swan destroyed John Collymore securing victory. Tom Smith concluded the weekend winning in deuce in a tight 5-set battle with Tom Savory.
Final Score: Woodfield 2 – 6 Barrow II
Barrow II: Jonathan Crawford (1), Scott Crawford (1), Tristran Swan (2), Tom Smith (2)
Woodfield I: Andy Rich (2), John Collymore (0), Leigh Hipkins (0), Tom Savary (0)
The clock is ticking and the opening weekend of Barrow II’s British League campaign is drawing closer.
Last season, Barrow II narrowly escaped relegation from Division 2 North after moving from the foot of the table during the final weekend of play. This season, the team aims to turn last season’s 7th position into 1st, thus winning promotion to Division 1 North.
The first British League weekend, 11th and 12th of September, is to be played at Hyndburn Sports Centre in Accrington. Barrow II’s opponents include Sheffield who were relegated from Division 1 North last season as well as Derwent II, Halton II and Woodfield I who finished 3rd last season. Sheffield and Woodfield I stand out as the weekends two tough fixtures. However, with team squads yet to be released, there could be some hidden dangers lurking.
The Barrow II team is to be an all Barrow affair consisting of Jonathan Crawford, Scott Crawford, Tristran Swan and Tom Smith. Travelling with the team will be reserve player Graham Coupe from Garstang.
Barrow II will be facing the following teams and players in Division 2 North of the British League 2010/2011 Season.
Drumchapel Glasgow III
Terry McLernon (Junior)
Barrow I British League Premier Division Fixtures
Barrow II British League Division 2 North Fixtures
British League Division 2 North Final Table
British League Division 2 North Results
Barrow II Player Averages
British League Division 2 North First Weekend Table
British League Division 2 North Results
Barrow II Player Averages
Chesterfield and Burton Uxbridge lead the way with seven points, although Burton may have a slight advantage as they have already beaten third-placed Halton II who have five points. It is fair to say that this Division is yet to sort itself out. Chesterfield’s blip came in round three against Derwent II (four points from the weekend) who won all four games from the numbers one and two positions. Richard Moss scored two superb wins over Andy Henry (11-8, 11-8, 2-11, 15-13) and Andrew Horsfield (7-11, 8-11, 11-2, 11-7, 11-4) and Chris Loxston excelled as well. Loxston beat both Andrew Horsfield (11-7, 11-9, 7-11, 11-7) and James Brown (15-13, 11-13, 10-12, 11-9, 11-8). Derwent were in the driving seat. Could they take the match ?. The answer turned out to be “no”. Chesterfield no. four Shaun Bibby won both of his singles defeating Mick Wilcockson 8-11, 11-8, 12-10, 9-11, 11-7 and Richard Crowther 11-6, 12-14, 11-4, 11-5 to keep his team in the hunt.
Chesterfield returned to winning ways in round four whitewashing Barrow Fastbats II 8-0 with Andrew Horsfield, Andy Henry, James Brown and Shaun Bibby carrying all before them. Barrow (and particular Steve Temple) will justifiably feel a little hard done by losing both games narrowly that went to the fifth end. They say that fortunes favours the brave, or, in Table Tennis the winning team and that was the case here. Andy Henry prevailed 12-10, 11-7, 6-11, 6-11, 12-10 against Temple and Andrew Horsfield also beat the gallant Temple, this time by an agonising 10-12, 13-11, 11-9, 7-11, 12-10.
Burton Uxbridge impressed greatly, beating Halton II 7-1. The scoreline flattered them, as they won all three five-enders (another case of fortune favouring the winning team), but, it was still a strong performance from the Burton side. Alastair McTavish scored two hard-fought wins, beating Keith Bird
(12-14, 13-11, 11-8, 8-11, 11-6) and Jake Shaw (11-7, 10-12, 11-9, 11-9) whilst Russell Boome also played his part. He beat newcomer Paul Orzechowski (10-12, 11-7, 11-4, 11-9) as well as Keith Bird (11-6, 5-11, 11-5, 9-11, 11-7).
Burton’s dropped point came (like Chesterfield) against Derwent II, in the first round. Richard Moss took the Player of the Match Award, and deservedly so. He beat both Alastair McTavish (11-6, 8-11, 11-7, 11-8) and Russell Boome (11-8, 13-11, 8-11, 11-9) as his side moved into a 3-2 lead. McTavish levelled the scores by getting the better of Mick Wilcockson 11-8, 11-9, 11-9 but Chris Loxston restored Derwent’s advantage as he saw off David Savage 11-8, 11-9, 11-13, 11-7. Burton were relieved to get a draw although Paznarcyk Bednarczak always looked like beating Nathan Horsley and duly ran out a 11-5, 11-6, 11-8 winner.
Having drawn with the two leading sides you would expect to see Derwent listed amongst the challengers, but, they tasted defeat in round four when beaten 5-3 by Drumchapel Glasgow II. It wasn’t such a happy game for Richard Moss, beaten by both Andrew McFadden (3-2) and Chris Main (3-1)
as Drumchapel raced into a 3-0 and 4-1 lead. Rebecca Russell secured victory for her side by getting the better of Richard Crowther 11-9, 4-11, 11-6, 11-8.
Halton II’s fine 5-3 victory over Drumchapel Glasgow II leaves the Scottish team on four points. Halton excelled in this match. They won all four five setters. Andrew McFadyen set the tone in the first match, fighting back from 2-0 down to get the better of Keith Bird 8-11, 9-11, 11-3, 11-6, 11-6 whilst Rebecca Russell also showed real determination. She fought back from 2-0 down to beat Caroline Hallows 8-11, 5-11, 11-8, 11-7, 11-7. There was no joy for Caroline Hallows against Andrew McFadyen either, she led 2-0 before Andrew hauled his way back into contention to triumph 5-11, 8-11, 11-3, 13-11, 11-4.