Whalley sides looking for promotion boost

Both sides have it all to do
Both sides have it all to do

In the East Lancashire Table Tennis League, both Whalley Hakws and Eagles have it to do to win promotion to the top flight.

Division One is a closely-fought division from top to bottom, although the two front runners at the moment have the potential to stay there.

These are Hyndburners, greatly helped by a superb season so far by Duncan Rigby, second in the merits, and Ramsbottom C, with their own emerging star in Tim Fields, fourth in the merits.

Ramsbottom may fancy they can go above Hyndburners to top place as they are only 12 points behind them, but with a game in hand.

Whalley Hawks and Whalley Eagles are third and fourth respectively, but may struggle to threaten the top two this season.

Sixth placed Old Masters A and KSB A, in seventh, with two games in hand each, have the potential to!

Old Masters have the division’s best player to help them in Howard Whewell, and KSB A - worthy of mention as the only remaining unbeaten team in the division - have the ever consistent Trevor Elkington, fifth in the merits.

KSB are fifth at present, and with the likes of Daven Argile - third in the merits - have the capacity on any given night to go toe to toe with any team.

The bottom four who are fighting around the relegation zone are Tackyfire, Mavericks, Hyndburn B and Whalley Kestrals, though perhaps most worried should be Hyndburn B and Mavericks, without a win to their name at present.

It’s the closest title race in recent memory this year for the Premier Division.

Unbeaten so far, and allowing for games in hand and thus still in the challenge for the honours, are K.Ward Plumbing, Ramsbottom A, and B.L.C. Clarets, who, along with current first placed East Lancs 1sts, with just the one loss, could all emerge on top by Christmas.

With most of these teams involved in clashes before then with each other, it is hard to call at this stage.

K.Ward Plumbing will look to their sponsor and best player Keith Ward to aid their chances, Ramsbottom to Mandy Winskill and Martin Wyatt, and B.L.C. Clarets to Keith Lee and Dave Kay.

Brierfield, as a newly promoted team, can be pleased with their start, with three wins out of six and being comfortably mid-table, as can East Lancs 2nds, the other newly-promoted team, who though second, are, in pro-rata terms, also well placed mid-table.

Three teams without a win and most likely in danger of relegation at the moment are Rovers, Hyndburn A and The Lions, but with Hyndburn have the likes of Mick Moir at hand to come and play if needed further on into the season.