The annual challenge match between Barming and Chatham TTC’s was played at the Howard School on Sunday 11/09/2016 and was keenly contested in a very friendly and sporting way.

  Barming came into this match as the winners of the shield in the inaugural season last year and were probably hoping to keep their hands on the shield.

   This match is held between 4 teams from each club representing their respective divisions in the Maidstone and Medway leagues.

  On table 1 the match got under way and the first two games both went to five sets with Terry Clapperton of Barming beating Stuart Fritter in the first and just to level things up Dean Chipperfield beat Matt Spratek in the second.  The third member of the Chatham side was Paul Cullern who had been conscripted from the 3rd or 4th division and was a little out of his depth although putting up a good fight.  Tim Vaughan was Barming’s third string.

Dean won all his three and Stuart won 2 for Chatham while Terry got a brace for Barming and Matt and Tim got singles.  Barming won the doubles in five well-contested sets 11-8 in the fifth.

  Table score was all-square at 5-5.

  On table 2 the match was even more closely contested with no fewer than 5 of the 10 games going the distance with Barming taking 4 of them.  Ben Towers was the hero for Chatham as he won all his three beating William McCarthy, Ian Parkes and his son Robert.  With Martin Birley and Shevon McDonald both beating Robert it was left to William and Ian to both grab braces and Robert got some consolation as he partnered William to a five set 12-10 final set scoreline.

  Table score was again a 5-5 draw making the match score 10-10.

  On table three the same formula worked for Chatham as Trevor Towers emulated son Ben’s achievement by winning all his three against Ken Hewett, Matt Clarke and Nic the Romanian (surname unpronounceable).  Nic and Ken both got 2 for Barming and Segun Ake and Gareth Dewdney both got singles for Chatham leaving Matt as the unlucky recipient of an unwanted “egg”.  The big difference in this match was that Chatham won the doubles in three.

  Table score 6-4 to Chatham.  Overall score 16-14 to Chatham.

  Table 4 was where it all went pear-shaped for Barming as Chatham put out a full strength side and Barming a relatively inexperienced one and the final score on this table reflected this fact as Frank Wing, Malcolm Kay and Roger Chipperfield all getting trebles against the Barming trio of Brooke Palmer, Haydn Vaughan and Alex Haniewicz with only Brooke really testing both Malcolm and Roger taking both of them to five.  Again Chatham took the doubles in three straight sets.

   Table score 10-0 to Chatham.  Overall score 26-14 to Chatham.

  Everyone then adjourned to the viewing area to have a well earned lunch and to announce the score and give every player a small memento of the day.  After that everyone went their own ways looking forward to renewing the rivalry next season.

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