Lillington Free Church pulled out all the stops to retain their Division Two status following the second day of competition in the British Junior League, writes Phil John.
The quartet of Timmy Cooper, Lee Dorning, Sam Henderson (on loan from Colebridge) and Sam Weaving finished fourth of the six teams in their debut season in the country’s top junior competition.
They began on Saturday with a 4-2 defeat to BATTS of Harlow, with Weaving and Henderson both beating Luke Jones and Cooper losing out in five to England number 54 Ethan Walsh.
Weaving picked up a consolation in the 5-1 defeat to London-based Fusion but victories were not far away and Lillington bounced back to beat Dublin 4-2, Cooper beating Charlie Fitzgerald and Henrik Sartor-Bousenbauch and Dorning and Weaving getting the better of Conor Gallagher.
The strong Colin Deaton club from Chesterfield were next and Lillington sprang something of a surprise to win 4-2.
Copper defeated England number 55 Kin Fung Chan to end his 100 per cent record, and Tim Denby , while Dorning beat Alex Tilley and Henderson overcame England number 69 Denby.
Finally, Lillington edged out London Academy 4-2 with Henderson beating Jay Ghazi-Timms and his brother Kai and Cooper defeating Jay and Theodore Achampong to end with an impressive 61 per cent average.
Two Lillington Free Church players travelled to Cirencester on Sunday to compete in the 1-star tournament.
Robbie Fitchford’s runner-up position in his initial group included a fine win over Luke Pennington of Gloucestershire. He then went on to beat another Gloucestershire player in Marcus Holba to finish sixth overall.
Ricardo Bolanos finished third in his first group, beating Middlesex’s Hassan Mansary. He then beat Leon Kashdan-Brown of Gloucestershire to finish ninth overall.
In the Leamington & District League, Colebridge B boosted their hopes of avoiding relegation from Division One with a fine 8-2 win over Rugby B.
Nav Matharu recorded three wins and the doubles with John Chandler who, like Vikas Bakshi, won twice. Niall Herbert replied with two wins.
Colebridge A marched on at the top courtesy of a 9-1 drubbing of Free Church B.
Kate Hughes and Ben Willson took hat-tricks and Sam Henderson won twice, falling to the impressive Sam Weaving.
Rugby A beat WCC A 9-1, with Phil Paine staving off the whitewash.
St George’s B moved into fourth after defeating bottom side Enigmas 9-1 with Mark Jackson and Ron Vose unbeaten in singles and doubles and Luke Hobbins claiming two. Steve Proctor scored for Enigmas.
Free Church A overcame WCC B 8-2, with Timmy Cooper (3), Chris Mulligan (3) and Lee Dorning (1) plus the doubles doing the damage.
Simon Griew and Martin Hunter registered singles for Council.
Leaders Whitnash A beat third-placed Free Church C 7-3 in Division Two with Kevin Arris and Paul Riman clocking up all seven points.