Unfortunately, Team 1 of Greig McDonell, David Melrose & Abby Wighton had rearranged their postponed fixture against Fife to last Monday night, before the snow came. Having postponed the match originally because of a holiday absence and rearranged it to a date which supposedly suited everyone, you can imagine Team Captain Greig’s response when David pointed out to him that he was on holiday last week!! As George Bernard Shaw put it “The single biggest problem with communication is the illusion that it has taken place and that David has listened to it” – maybe he never said that last bit!
So up stepped Charlie Brindley to make his Premier League debut for Penicuik as they travelled to Inverkeithing – can someone remind us in which part of the Edinburgh & Lothians do we find Inverkeithing? Some good news on arrival was the absence of Peter Aird and his funny bat – replaced with another dodgy bat though and unfortunately in the hands of a much younger, fitter, more athletic and attacking Callum Riddoch who joined Lance Stockdale and Jason Fleming.
Abby was unable to come to terms with Callum’s ability to counter hit from distance and the use of his pimples perplexed her as she lost in 3 straight ends. Worse was to come as Charlie’s debut against Jason was something of a baptism of fire for him as he lost without managing 11 points in total across the three ends played. Greig got the team on the board with a win against Lance before Abby lost to Jason – although Jason won in 3, the quality of the play was terrific and Abby, in truth, ought to have been 2-0 up after relinquishing game winning positions in the first two ends. Greig then defeated Callum in three straight ends (according to him playing some of his best TT of the season) before Lance restored a two-match lead with a victory over Charlie – 4-2 down and the decision made to finish the match on two tables – oh how we hate that!
Simultaneously, it looked as if Greig and Charlie could bring the match level as they both won the first ends of their respective matches but in the blink of an eye it was over as both lost to Jason and Callum respectively. Abby was then unlucky against Lance before the meaningless doubles became more of an opportunity for a chat than a serious match – an 8-2 defeat left the away side with a depressing journey home filled with “Oh what might have beens”.
And that’s it – all other 6 fixtures for the Club postponed due to the snow!! What more can we talk about…
Player of the Week? Oh this will be good – only one player this week managed to record any victories for the Club – for the second week in a row the award goes to………..
Controversy of the Week – we were criticised (by some without a sense of humour) for commenting on a postponement given by Team 3 a number of weeks ago due to adverse weather making the point that forcing our opponents to travel to Penicuik, risking their lives in the process was perhaps our best way of picking up some points! This week truly has shown what the weather can do to every aspect of life, never mind amateur sport – even Mr Scrabble Man who normally thinks our winters are tropical was forced to concede that playing TT last week from Wednesday onwards would have been completely “mental”! He spent the time instead building snowmen in his garden while in his swimming trunks.
We received this week the Minutes from the last League Committee meeting which dealt with the two “complaints” we discussed last week. In relation to Edinburgh Uni playing an ineligible player we are told in what appears to be a suggestion that the League were being ultra-strict on this rule, that not only were Yubo’s 3 singles games (which he won) overturned but the doubles in which he participated was also overturned turning a 7-3 defeat for Haddington into a 7-3 win. Wow – how harsh! Eh actually not harsh at all – there’s no rule which allows this course of action – the rule is abundantly clear – a team who plays an ineligible player forfeits the match 10-0. Never mind though the new set of Rules proposed for next season addresses the point at Para 5 (f):
“Should any team play a player who is ineligible to play for any reason then all matches won by that team, in the fixture in question, shall be void, and will be awarded to the opposing team”
Will that Rule be enforced with any more conviction than the current one? Who knows – the new draft Rules are out though for circulation amongst members and the League are giving us the great opportunity of voting them through at the AGM – the wonderfully worded email from the league tells us the following:
“Note that, in event that attendees at the AGM reject these new documents, the fall-back position is that the league would make do with the present “unfit-for-purpose” ones!”
Not a ringing endorsement for the Rules we have at present then! On a serious note, however, well done to those involved in the preparation of these new rules and guidance notes (Roger Thomas & Kevin Lawson particularly) – we certainly recognise how much commitment and time that must have taken.
Back to the Minutes from the last Committee meeting - In relation to the Edinburgh International issues, it transpires that EI2 had sought a postponement against WL 2 of their Division 1 fixture on the basis that they couldn’t field a team – the request was granted by WL but unbeknown to them the basis of the request appears to have been to allow EI’s newly registered player Jean Pierre to play – a player, who it seems, would probably walk into virtually any Premier League side – the minutes record Lindsay Muir as indicating he had seen JP practising at Murrayfield and would certainly have placed him in the Premier league rather than Division 1! In any event the postponement having been agreed there was nothing that WL could do about it. Sporting of EI not to give the full reason for seeking a rescheduling? Does it matter? Our view on postponements is well known – just don’t allow them (unless a situation like last week arises). EI pointed out that in a top of the table clash they would rather play their opponents at full strength than take advantage of a weakened team – wow what an admirable position to take – we would take any advantage we could to get a win!! As that famous saying goes – “Rise above principles and do what’s best for you” – hang on that doesn’t sound right??
Until next week when hopefully we can get some TT played….