Unbeaten leaders Legion A given fright of pool season by H2O

DANNY BUTLER -- top of the rankings table.
DANNY BUTLER -- top of the rankings table.

Tabletopping Royal British Legion A received the fright of their hitherto smooth season when visiting H2O in the HUCKNALL EPA POOL LEAGUE.

Legion A’s 15-match unbeaten run came under severe threat when they trailed third-placed H2O 3-0 and 4-1, despite a lone singles success for Mick Fowkes. But a storming fightback salvaged a point from the wreckage as they drew 4-4 thanks to the heroics of Steve Wood and Curly Johnstone, who both won on singles and pairs. Earlier winners for the home side were Dan Carp, Ash Smith, Tony Flanagan and the partnership of Dave Ellis and Zac Ellis.

Legion A were even more relieved to hear that their closest challengers in the title race, inter-club rivals Royal British Legion B, whom they play next week, had also been held to a 4-4 draw, leaving their four-point lead intact.

Mid-table Liberal Club were the surprise package this time in a contest that swung this way and that before Malc Grocock saved the day for the home side on the last leg -- after previous triumphs for Colin Draycott, Dean Dymock and Joe Etherington.

On target for Liberal were Will Clark and Steve Clark, who both won on singles and pairs, and the pairing of Bill Hardy and Bill Clark.

The league’s individual rankings table continues to be led by Danny Butler, star player for the defending champions, Station Hotel B.

Butler has won 91% of his matches so far this term, and made it 14 victories from 16 with an eight-ball clearance in Station B’s 7-1 breeze away to bottom-of-the-table Green Dragon. He struck on the fifth leg -- after wins for Sean Chauntry, Andrea Green and the pairing of Chauntry and Roger Green, and before further successes for Dave Butler and Paddy McShane. He also triumphed on pairs.

An eight-ball clearance was also registered by Shane Wood, on the second pairs leg, in a 5-3 victory for The Dragon away to Spot-On Club (formerly Empire). Wood was also successful on singles, along with teammates Kath Orange, Phil Dalmedo and Steve Nicholls.

The week’s remaining two matches finished 5-3 in favour of Station Hotel A, at home to Chequers, and Yew Tree, at home to Bestwood Village Social Club. Station A rallied bravely to hit back from 1-0, 2-1 and 3-2 down, thanks to late victories by Norman S mith, Josh Hibbard and the partnership of Paul Hibbard and Paul Heath.

Yew Tree took four of the first five legs against Bestwood, courtesy of Ian Wikeley, Wayne Bettridge, Lee Breedon and the pairing of Jake Rodgers and partner. But after a Bestwood recovery, they had to rely on Lee Burton, who won the final frame.

NEXT WEDNESDAY NIGHT’S FIXTURES -- Royal British Legion B v Royal British Legion A, Station Hotel A v Bestwood Village Social Club, The Dragon v Liberal Club, H2O v Green Dragon, Yew Tree v Station Hotel B, Spot-On Club v Chequers.