THE final of the HUCKNALL EPA LEAGUE’S Knockout Cup will be an all-Royal British Legion affair after cosy victories in the two semis.
Tabletopping Legion A kept up their hopes of a league and cup double by beating Liberal Club 4-1 thanks to wins from Rich Devine, Tim McShane, Martin Bremner and Ryan Orton.
While clubmates Legion B upset second-placed title-chasers Empire A with a terrific 4-2 success, completed by wins from stalwarts Dean Dymock and Dave Stacey-King.
Back in the league itself, only three points continue to separate the top four sides, with six weeks of the season remaining.
Legion A looked to be cruising when three up at Station Hotel (Hucknall B), courtesy of Devine, Orton and the partnership of Devine and Nigel Burton. But plucky Station B took three of the next four legs in the hands of Andrea Green, Scott Oxford and the pairing of Green and Paul Hibbard, meaning all rested on the final frame, which Burton won against Paddy McShane.
Empire A bounced back from their cup disappointment to hammer Harrier 7-1, with Steve Wood and Geoff Taylor triumphant on singles and pairs.
The match of the week was between the teams in third and fourth — Empire Muppets and Spot-On Low-C. But it turned into a rout as Low-C proved they are not prepared to let go of their champions crown just yet. The visitors romped home 7-1 thanks to Tim Hudson, Dean Britton, Ryan Norris, Simon Thompson, Simon Moralee and the pairings of Moralee and Colin Draycott and Norris and Britton.
Remarkably, the top four now hold a huge 11-point lead over the rest of the league. But that didn’t bother Legion B, Yew Tree and Liberal Club, who all collected welcome victories.
Fresh from their cup joy, Legion B defeated Green Dragon 5-3, with Rob Simpson winning on singles and pairs, including the decisive final leg.
Inspired by star man Karl Jones, who also registered a singles/pairs double, Yew Tree clobbered bottom-of-the-table Chequers Inn A 7-1. And Liberal enjoyed a 5-3 success at Bestwood Village Social Club after taking the first four legs.
THE LEAGUE’S individual rankings table now has joint leaders in Geoff Taylor (Empire A) and Tim McShane (Legion A), both of whom have 130 points after 18 wins from 20 matches.