Lions claim premiership in close game

PREMIERS: Lions took out the Port Lincoln Table Tennis Association grand final. Names in story.
PREMIERS: Lions took out the Port Lincoln Table Tennis Association grand final. Names in story.

Lions are back to back premiers after defeating Tigers in one of the closest results of the season.

Lions did it the hard way after losing to Tigers earlier in the finals series and then narrowly defeating Panthers in the preliminary final.

Lions started on the front foot with early wins to Jason Regan, Martin Sheridan and Jim Casanova giving them the edge.

Tigers responded through the likes of Joseph Harris and Rodney Scharfe, but still trailed by one after the first round of matches.

Tigers clicked into action in the doubles, turning their deficit of one into a lead of two by winning the close points when it mattered. 

Adam Walker and Lewis Hains were impressive in their three set win over Ernie Bauer and Wayde Heidenreich.

Lions lifted through the second round of singles with Serena Fong coming from two sets to one down to defeat Geoff Nottle in five sets.

Along with support from Brenton Stagg, David Sherry and Jim Casanova, Lions moved into a lead of two with the final round of singles to play.

Lions had one hand on the premiership with the first three wins of the final round to Martin Sheridan, Jesse Marcal and Heidenreich over Nottle, Connor Harrison and Adam Walker respectively.

Tigers fought back with two tough five set wins, with Scharfe outlasting Jim Casanova and Hains playing beyond his years to overcome Bauer, but still trailed by two with four matches to play.

That lead was soon erased thanks to Fred Ettridge and Peter Lee, leaving the scores locked together at 17 all with the final two matches on the tables.

Fong moved Lions to 18 first with a four set win over Shane Harris, before Tigers’ Joseph Harris completed his undefeated season by coming from behind to defeat Regan in five sets and lock the final scores at 18.

After a nervous countback Lions were declared the winners.

Best for Lions were David Sherry, Jim Casanova and Brenton Stagg.  Best for Tigers were Joseph Harris, Peter Lee and Fred Ettridge.

Pictured are: Jim Casanova, David Sherry, Jesse Marcal, Brenton Stagg, Martin Sheridan, Ernie Bauer; front: Wayde Heidenreich, Jason Regan, Serena Fong.