Leicester & District: LeButt claims title treble

Author:
John Bowness (publicity officer)

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Please note - this news article was published more than three years ago. Some of the information contained may no longer be correct.

Andy LeButt, who plays out of Leicester Electricity in the Leicester & District League, was the most successful player of the Leicester Closed Championships, as well as being one of the busiest over the two days of the main events.

For the second season running he was beaten finalist in the Men’s Singles, this time losing to Dave Gannon 3-1 (11-4, 11-5, 9-11, 11-5) having lost at the same point last time to David Grundy who did not compete this year.

LeButt made up for it in most of the other events he contested, winning the Veteran Singles – he was beaten finalist in that one as well last term – against Reza Kiani this time 3-1 (13-11, 11-7, 8-11, 11-6) and also defeated the same player in the Under 300 graded event, again 3-1. LeButt found Kevin Yang, who has been finding some very useful form of late in Division One, marginally too strong in the Under 400 event when the latter squeezed home 3-2 (7-11, 11-9, 11-7, 9-11, 14-12).

LeButt finally completed a very good championship when pairing with junior, Jack Rogers, in the doubles, defeating Kiani & Yang 3-2 (11-5, 10-12, 12-14, 11-6, 11-4). Five finals and three successes for LeButt.

Jack Rogers scored a terrific 3-0 victory over emerging Adam Pettitt to win the Boys’ Singles but Pettitt then showed his vast improvement recently with a win in the handicap singles, beating Barry Taylor with a four-point start 17-21, 21-3, 21-15 before taking the Intermediate final 3-2 against Aman Rashid (11-8, 8-11, 14-12, 4-11, 11-7).

Rashid, who is not playing league table tennis at the moment, was unaccountably refused membership by the club he was coached by and played for in the league, Knighton Park, before being given an eleventh-hour lifeline by a Syston Casuals membership in order to compete.

Other results:
Girls’ Singles: Maya Dehnen beat Kelsey Andrews 3-0.
Over 50s: Richard Hayes beat Barry Taylor 3-0.
Over 60s: Clive Stretton beat Geoff Hancock 3-2.
Under 100 gradings: Nick Bishop beat Tony Monteiro 3-1.
Under 150 gradings: Jianglong Guo beat Dan Andrews 3-1.
Under 200 gradings: Jianglong Guo beat Himansu Mishra 3-0.
Under 250 gradings: Les Baker beat Jason Woodfield 3-2.
Handicap Doubles: Fahed Sacoor and Martin Pember (+3) beat Les Baker and Tony Monteiro 21-18, 9-21, 21-17.

In the league itself Knighton Park’s first team had to work hard to defeat third-placed team Ajax Wolvey 6-4 and it was mainly thanks to a superb maximum by Chris Rogers, while Reza Kiani and Les Baker supported with one apiece before Rogers and Baker took the doubles. For Ajax, Aidan Walsh won two, John Fuller and Jon Williams one each.

This keeps KP within two points of leaders, Unicorn, who romped home 10-0 against Electricity II, with George Briskolas notching a three-straight maximum while Tim Sheppard and Lu Zhang also emerged undefeated, although the latter just made it 12-10 in the fifth against Harry White.

Without a match this week, Electricity’s third string now need to win just one of their remaining two fixtures to make sure of second place in Division Two behind the rampant Unicorn II. On paper they should make it with one against already relegated Nomads.

The tussle for second place in Division Three is almost resolved although, just to make sure, Blaby & Whetstone need to draw against nearest rivals, Knighton Park VIII after thrashing a full strength Goons team 10-0 with Paul Hinson, Phill Hinson and John Winsper taking no prisoners.

The KP eighth team have two matches in hand but need to win them all, squeezing home 6-4 against Electricity IV when Patrick Cox won three and Max Huggins two, these two making sure of full points with the doubles. Chris Woodward won two for the Sparks.

Arnesby II are already way ahead at the top and won 6-4 against Knighton Park VI when Rhys Emery claimed three and Dave Wagstaff two. For Park Steve Bessant won two including an excellent success against Wagstaff.

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