CLACTON and District League first division side Windsor Kestrels survived their Handicap Knockout Cup tie against Windsor Swallows - but only just.

The Kestrels were cruising at 3-0 and 4-2.

However, division three Swallows fought to take the third-round tie into the deciding doubles, which was won 11-3 in the fifth set by a relieved Dave Martin and John Harvey (-8) for the Kestrels against Angela Barratt and Robbie Strutt (+1).

In retrospect, the Kestrels will reflect on the importance of winning the opening doubles, with Martin and Graham Bunce (-8) beating Strutt and Ashley Ivell (+2) 11-8 in the fifth.

Martin remained unbeaten on the night while Strutt won both his singles for the losers.

One third division side, Nomads Pumas, did cause an upset, beating division two Brotherhood I 5-2. Alan Dockerill and John Bowers starred to remain unbeaten.

The Pumas took both matches which went to five, with Dockerill and Lionel Goddard (+1) beating Graham Parkes and Fred Gallone (-6) 11-4 in the decider, while Dockerill (+2) defeated Paul Alden (-8) 11-6 in the fifth.

Walton C, of division one, the last remaining Walton team in the competition, unceremoniously crashed out 5-0 to Phil Wolski, Daryl Lott and Eric Lemke, of second division Nomads Tigers.

In the only all-first division encounter, Nomads Lions beat Brotherhood D 5-2, with Ethan Lloyd undefeated.

The all-Brotherhood clash saw the H team of division two win 5-1 against the G team of division three in a match closer than the score suggests.

Frank Burbidge remained unbeaten.

There was hardly a whisker between the grades of the six players in the all-second division encounter between Windsor Magpies and Brotherhood E but the Magpies emerged victorious 5-2.

Dave Sweetland and Kayley Rodriguez were undefeated.

In Group One of the Division Three Handicap Challenge competition, Nomads Leopards beat Windsor Swallows 8-1, with Stuart Wilkinson and Dave Wright unbeaten.

Diane Self (+1) defeated Norman Jacobs (-5) for the Swallows’ consolation win.

It was also 8-1 for Nomads Lynx against Windsor Swallows in Group Two. Doug Green and Liam Harris stayed unbeaten, with Cameron Cini taking one singles and sharing two doubles.

Paul Dale (-5) beat Cini (+1) 11-9 in the decider for the Penguins’ victory.

The result means the Lynx, Penguins and Brotherhood J are linked together on four points at the top of the group.

* Older league members will be saddened to learn of the death of former player Dave Johns, aged 77, who died suddenly last week after suffering a heart attack.

Dave was a regular in divisions one and two for over 40 years until he moved to Aylsham in 2006, where he continued to play in the North Norfolk League.

He was never a star performer but, whenever he picked up a table tennis bat, he always gave his all.

Off the table, he was friendly and sociable and a proud family man.

The league sends its sincere condolences to his wife Janet, children and grand-children.

Results: Knockout Cup - round three: Brotherhood I 2 Nomads Pumas 5, Windsor Kestrels 5 Windsor Swallows 4, Brotherhood H 5 Brotherhood G 1, Walton C 0 Nomads Tigers 5, Brotherhood E 2 Windsor Magpies 5, Nomads Lions 5 Brotherhood D 2, Nomads Panthers w/o v Lawford, Brotherhood B v Nomads Ocelots (result sheet not yet received). Division Three Handicap Challenge - Group One: Nomads Leopards 8 Windsor Swallows 1, Brotherhood G 9 Nomads Ocelots 0 (walk-over). Group Two: Nomads Lynx 8 Nomads Penguins 1.