Oldham & Rochdale Badminton League – Team Handicap Final
Alpha B (winners) – Andrew Brierley, Michael Baker, Oliver Greensmith, Rick Watson, Damon Conway, Phil Worthington.
Lydgate A (runners-up) – Nick Leech, Terry Hevicon, Neal Barnes, Martin Noble, Graham Hobbs, David Cheetham, Richard Power, Ali Grimshaw.
Last Wednesday (14th March) saw the Open final of the Paul Prajapati Memorial Trophy Team Handicap. The final took place at Falinge Park High School, with Division 1 team Lydgate A taking on Alpha Whitworth of Division 2. Both teams had fought hard to reach the final – Lydgate A defeated Kashmir B, Lancashire Racquets and Y Club whilst Alpha B saw off Bury Topflight, Alpha A, Saddleworth A and Kashmir A.
Being the first division team, Lydgate A knew that they would have to keep their opponents scores down. Ali Grimshaw/Nick Leech started well in the first two games, by restricting Andrew Brierley/Phil Worthington to 11 in each. Oliver Greensmith/Rick Watson hit back in the next game by managing to score 15 points but could not stop Terry Hevicon/Neal Barnes winning the next 21-7.
The match remained tight throughout the evening but the Alpha team continued to record some high scores. Damon Conway/Michael Baker scored 16 points against Martin Noble/Richard Power and Oliver Greensmith/Michael Baker also recorded 16 points against Terry Hevicon/Richard Power. The final two games of the final saw Phil Worthington/Oliver Greensmith record scores of 19 and 12 against Nick Leech/Terry Hevicon.
Having won all of the games in the final, Lydgate now had to wait to see if they had done enough once the handicap had been added. The opening of the handicap envelope revealed that Alpha B had won by 417.5 – 378. This meant that they were able to celebrate their second successive victory in the Open team handicap final.