Week five of the South London & Kent Pool Alliance and Eltham Terrace Tigers are still one of only four unbeaten teams in the league and they are riding high at the top of Division Two. 

Tigers were four places and twelve points ahead of visitors The Con Men, so it was surprising when they said they faced their toughest opposition yet. 

Rob Osbourn won the first frame for the visitors before John Ly levelled, then Stephen Unwin put Tigers ahead and Del Purvis tied the match. 

James Cooke won the deciding frame of the set to put Tigers, 3-2 ahead. 

The second set went the same way as the first, with Danny Campbell winning the set deciding frame putting Tigers, 6-4 up. 

The third set followed the same pattern, but this time Stephen Unwin took the set deciding frame making the final score, 9-6.

Cooke was player of the match for Tigers, winning all three of his frames. 

Tigers remain unbeaten at the top of the table and The Con Men stay in fifth, but Farmhouse move up one place into second after a comprehensive victory over Plough & Harrow. 

There were five places and seven points between these teams and Plough & Harrow didn’t do themselves any favours when they arrived with four players. 

However, the first two frames were shared, before Farmhouse won the next three frames to take the first set, 4-1. 

James McGuire pulled another frame back for Farmhouse, but Steve Carpenter, Nick Brown, Lacey Denahy, and John Denahy with the bye, took the next four frames to win the match before the start of the last set. 

Carpenter and Brown put Farmhouse into double figures, before Lynn Mather and McGuire won their second frames of the night to tie the set. 

Unfortunately for Plough they had run out of players and Lacey Denahy was handed the last frame, for her hat-trick to give her team the, 11-4 triumph. 

Lacey Denahy wasn’t the only unbeaten player, as Brown also won all three frames and Carpenter scored an unbeaten brace. 

Plough drop to ninth, eleven points ahead of bottom team, Downham Tavern A Team, after they couldn’t field a side to play White Hart, so they leapfrogged Plough by two points. 

At the top of the table, Goodfellows drop one place to third, one point behind Farmhouse, after they could only manage a narrow, 8-7 win over Sundridge Park Working Men’s Club. 

Despite having the same, won two, lost two record, there were three places and six points between Hurricanes Reborn and Bexleyheath Raiders when they met this week. 

Hurricanes hosted Raiders looking to bounce back from last week’s defeat to Con Men, and it didn’t start well for them, with Ben Walsh going in off after potting the black and they were soon, 2-0 down. 

It was an international affair when Hurricanes Captain, Kevin England and Charles French levelled the score, but Raiders won a close set deciding frame to go into the second set, 3-2 ahead. 

The Hurricanes didn’t think it was going to be their night when Luke Knight potted the black out of turn to give Raiders a, 4-2 lead however, Hurricanes fought back with frame wins from England, Walsh, and Arif Salih, putting them in the lead for the first time at, 5-4. 

Raiders took frame ten to make the game nicely poised at five all going into the final set. 

Michelle Brown opened the last set for Hurricanes and unluckily missed a long pot on the black, which her opponent punished to put them back in the lead, 6-5. 

The luckless Knight held his nerve this time to tie the match, then Hurricanes stepped it up with England completing his hat-trick, for his best performance of the season and his team were on the hill at, 7-6. 

Walsh secured the victory and Salih made it, 9-6 with the final frame. 

This was a competitive game played in good spirits, epitomised by Ricky Taylor who called a foul on himself, which the ref didn’t see at a crucial point. 

Hurricanes are in fourth, a point behind Goodfellows and three places and nine points ahead of Raiders. 

Tigers are the first team in the league to hit 50 points and they have an eight-point lead at the top, but the next eight teams are separated by 14 points, with Downham Tavern A Team starting to get stranded at the bottom. 

This week SLKPA Division One ironed itself out a little, with most of the teams playing five matches now, apart from Blackheath Sports Club and New Eltham New Boys, who’s match was postponed this week and as a result they find themselves as the bottom two teams. 

Academicals were looking for their first win of the season, and despite the Duke of Northumberland being four places and eight points ahead of them, this was an incredibly close game. 

The tone was set during the first set, which Duke edged, 3-2 but Academicals gained a huge foothold in the game by taking the first three frames of the second set to move them, 5-3 in front. 

Duke responded by winning the next two frames to make it all square at five all after the second set. 

Gary Mason got the Academicals off to a great start in the deciding set by continuing his good form on the night and scoring a hat-trick to put his team one ahead. 

However, the game swung back into Duke’s favour, winning the next three frames for an unassailable, 8-6 lead before Academicals grabbed the last frame to make the final score, 8-7. 

Mason wasn’t the only unbeaten player, as Mark Hill won both of his frames for Duke. 

Academicals were so close to their first win of the season however, this great performance did lift them off the bottom of the table, although as mentioned the two teams below them do have a game in hand. 

Duke of Northumberland climb two places into fourth, with Bell Ya Later dropping from third to fifth and Eltham Terrace Rack Pack falling two places to seventh.

As the matches between Bears and Bell Ya Later, (9-6) and Rack Pack and Cue-Ologists, (4-11) had already been played the only other teams playing catch up were, Downham Tavern Terrors and Bellegrove Flyers. 

Flyers were in fourth, three places and three points ahead of Terrors, so this match definitely had promise and it lived up to that, going onto the shortlist for match of the season. 

Flyers got off to a Flyer, winning the first five frames to whitewash the set, but this didn’t reflect the standard of play, as both teams were on the ball, and it was a great spectacle for the neutral. 

Understandably Flyers were in high spirits going into the second set however, Terrors took the first two frames, before Kevin Dempsey produced a delightful break and dish to send the Terrors fans into a frenzy, bringing them back to, 5-3. 

Two frames later and Flyers found themselves on the end of a set whitewash, with Terrors returning the favour. 

Going into the third set all square at five all, who would hold their nerve or who would have lady luck on their side?

It turned out that Flyers held their nerve the best and had their fair share of luck, winning the last set, 4-1 to take the match, 9-6. 

Flyers flew into second place, three points behind Bears at the top and on the same points as Cue-Ologists in third, while Terrors stay in fifth. 

This division is looking to be incredibly competitive with 20 points between the ten teams and the bottom two have a game in hand. 

Bottom of the SLKPA Premier Division, Falconwood Club were still looking for their first win of the season and travelled to Eltham Terrace Nuthouse, who were two places and eleven points above them. 

This was a very close game which Nuthouse just edged, 8-7 to leave Falconwood winless at the bottom, whereas Nuthouse went up one place to sixth. 

Sandwiched between Falconwood and Nuthouse were Pickwick and they travelled to second placed Rugrats this week. 

Despite the six places and 16 points between the two sides, Pickwick had a great start, with Jamie Davis, Paul Gafa and Paul Slater winning the first three frames, before Rugrats pulled two frames back. 

The first three frames of the second set were won by the same three players, giving Pickwick a, 6-2 lead. 

Like the first set, Jimmy Maloney pulled one back, then Captain Steve Gibson pulled another back, making it, 6-4 going into the final set. 

Slater and Davis won the match for Pickwick with their hat-trick frames and Gafa became the third hat-trick hero for Pickwick, making it, 9-4. 

Maloney also won his third frame of the night, before Gibson took the last frame to make the final sore, 9-6. 

Pickwick go up one place while Rugrats hang on to second, five points behind Sharks, who had an impressive, 11-4 triumph over fifth placed Bellegrove. 

Despite the loss, Bellegrove go up to third, one point above Hotshots, but they didn’t play this week and have two games in hand. 

Bellegrove A and New Eltham New Stars also didn’t play this week, and both suffered as a consequence, with New Stars dropping one place to fifth, whereas Bellegrove A fell two places to eighth.  

The Premier Division is a bit all over the place, with teams playing three, four and five games, so hopefully it will settle in the coming weeks as we near the halfway point of the season. 

After five weeks of league pool, the SLKPA switches its attention to the team knockout, Founder’s Cup first round next week. 

For more information on the SLKPA including league tables visit the website at www.slkpa.com or contact the Secretary, Paul Gafa on 07443 456662 or secretary@slkpa.com with any queries.

The league is looking at potential sponsors; any interested parties can also contact Paul Gafa.