Juniors show a resilient edge

THE city's leading juniors engaged in a very competitive fixture during the week at the Leichhardt Park Table Tennis Centre during the week.

Kerrod Coughlan, Paula Hockings and Matthew Pettett had only just returned from a solid week of competition at the national junior titles in Tasmania and had to contend with a new fixture which is based on the best-of-seven game concept with adjustable handicapping.

When they clashed, Coughlan held out Hockings over six tight games. However, he failed to reel in Kent Jacobsen, who played some great attacking shots to post a skinny victory in the deciding seventh set. When Jacobsen was pitted against Hockings, he recovered from a slow start to post victory, but by only three points in the decider.

In an entertaining clash Pettett held off a bold challenge from David Hockings 12-10, 8-11, 11-5, 8-11, 11-7, 13-11. Young Hockings took total advantage of some start and displayed plenty of determination and ability to push his consistent opponent. Pettett played too many aces for Rayden Smith, while in another exciting match-up Smith put a few questions to Hockings over an encounter that lasted five games with Smith winning one and looking impressive in a few others.

Mathias Andersson posted wins over both Riley Steffen and Enoch Pun. While Steffen gave have him plenty to worry about, Andersson won in straight sets 11-8, 12-10, 14-12, 13-11 and he was extended to seven long games when pitted against Pun. When Steffen met Pun, he impressively set up a great victory over six long sets.

Juniors also pushed claims in the Monday night B-grade competition. Matthew Pettett took the challenge to front-runner Steven Black before being overpowered in the fifth set decider. Rayden Smith had too many answers for Steven Hockings.

Alan Rowe made a comeback after missing a season and put in an impressive performance when he bundled out the tricky Daniel Pun in straight sets. Rowe also played quite positively against Phil Smith, but went down at deuce in the fourth game. Pun put in a great effort to come from a two-game deficit to edge out Dave Milverton in five, while later in the match Milverton recovered after trailing Smith 1-2 to win by the narrowest of margins in the decider.

Chris Leitner played strongly with wins over Peter McCabe and Patricia Green, although Green has been out a long time.

Vacancies exist in this lower grade competition on Monday nights and people interested only need make contact with the Club on 4922 5380 or visit the venue during the fixture. Youngsters are sought for the junior activities after school on Thursdays.

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