Eleven weeks into the South London & Kent Pool Alliance winter season and Eltham Terrace Nuthouse of the first division have eventually lost their first match of the season. 


Nuthouse played hosts to their nearest rivals and table toppers Pickwick and it was the league leaders who played superior pool all evening in both the tactical and potting aspects of the game, which was surprising given the five points that were between them at the beginning of the match. 


It was a solid all-round team performance from Pickwick, with all of their players contributing to their, 11-4 victory however, only two players were unbeaten; Paul Gafa on three frame wins and Dave Pile with two. 


This victory gave Pickwick a massive step towards the first division title, opening up a twelve-point gap over Nuthouse, who look favourites to be joining Pickwick back in the Premier Division, as they are eleven points ahead of their nearest rivals. 


Leading the chasing pack are New Eltham New Stars after they recorded a solid, 10-5 triumph over bottom side, Rugrats Guardians who did themselves no favours by only having four players. 


The first two frames were shared, but New Stars turned on the gas and won the next three frames to take a, 4-1 lead into the second set. 


Dave Beshaw won frame six to bring the score back to, 4-2, but New Stars strung another three frames together to take them to the hill. 


Guardians fought back and Aaron Shephard prevented New Stars from securing victory before the third set. 


However, Jim Duff won frame eleven, his only frame of the night to give New Stars the win and the next frame was a bye, making the score, 9-3. 


Guardians did well to win two of the last three frames to only lose the third set by the same score as the second set, 3-2. 


All four Guardians, Beshaw, Shephard, Martin Hart and Ross Webster all won a frame, with Shephard taking two of his three frames. 


New Stars ended the match with two unbeaten players however, one of those was Matt Prince who won his only frame with a bye, and the other was Ron Brown, playing and winning all three of his frames. 


New Stars leapfrog Eltham Terrace Rack Pack into third after they suffered a shock defeat to struggling Academicals. 


It was an excellent all-round team performance from Academicals to chalk up their third victory of the season. 


A hat-trick from Paul Doherty, a brace by Shane Hutley and wins from Paul Thomas, Dean Williams and Lou Newnham helped Academicals to an, 8-7 triumph. 


Unfortunately for Academicals this wasn’t enough to move them up the table, as Just Bellegrove, who were on the same points as Academicals, also picked up their own remarkable victory. 


Just Bellegrove bounced back from last week’s cup defeat with a great performance against a Fox & Hounds team, who beat Falconwood Club last week to take their place in the Founders Cup quarter final. 


A lot of the frames were like a chess match, but Just Bellegrove got out of the blocks quicker, winning the first four frames, with Kerry Wyatt preventing the first set whitewash for Fox. 


Martin Hession won the first frame of the second set to halve Bellegrove’s lead, but Bellegrove won the next three frames to take them to within one of victory. 


Clive Forrest took the last frame of the set to make the score, 7-3 however, Peter Gray sealed victory for Bellegrove and Jason Brunton and Richard Marsh made it three in a row to extend their lead to, 10-3. 


Kerry Wyatt again prevented the set whitewash, but Callum Brunton won his only frame of the night to give Just Bellegrove the, 11-4 triumph. 


Lewis Brind joined Callum Brunton in winning his only frame, but Gray and Mark Porter went one better, both scoring two out of two. 


Just Bellegrove have now joined their sister side, Bellegrove A on 71 points, after they were comprehensively beaten, 13-2 by Falconwood Club, who are one place and seven points ahead of their opponents. 


The bottom four teams; Guardians, Academicals, Just Bellegrove and Bellegrove A have now all won three matches this season, but are separated by fifteen points, so the fight to avoid relegation will be a tough one.


Nuthouse’s unbeaten run is now over, which makes Allstars the only unbeaten team in the league, after they beat bottom of the Premier Division, Rose Inn, 12-3 to extend their run to eleven matches and their lead at the top to 18 points. 


Hotshots remain in second after they gained revenge on their cup victors, Bull Tavern, beating them by the same score as the cup, 8-7. 


Bull stay in fourth, but they are joined on 84 points by Sharks, after they secured a good, 10-5 victory over second from bottom, Crayford A. 


Crayford are now four points ahead of Rose Inn and also four points behind Rugrats, as they suffered a, 9-6 defeat to Eltham Terrace Club A. 


Terrace have been struggling this season, but this result kept them in sixth place, although The Fox are breathing down their necks, going three points behind them with a win against third placed Bellegrove.


This was always going to be a close game as matches between The Fox and Bellegrove generally are, so it was a bit of a surprise when the away side took a, 4-1 lead, especially as Bellegrove are prone to slow starts. 


To be fair the score could quite easily have been reversed, as many of the frames could have gone either way and that continued into the second set, but The Fox took this one, 3-2. 


At, 6-4 up Bellegrove thought they would go on and win the match, but the momentum was with The Fox and they took the last set, 4-1 to win the match, 8-7. 


Barry Barham was the only Bellegrove player to trouble the scorers in the final set, completing his hat-trick in the process. 


Bellegrove stay in third, but they are only nine points ahead of their opponents in seventh. 


New Eltham New Boys have extended their lead at the top of SLKPA Division Two to eleven points with their emphatic, 11-4 victory over bottom team, Farmhouse. 


This gap was made even more important as second place, Royal Oak could only manage an, 8-7 win over second from bottom, Anglesea Arms. 


Many of the teams in Division Two only have three games left to play, apart from Sea the Angles who have four, but the positions in this division are practically decided, as the gaps between the teams appear to be too much to overcome. 


The SLKPA have a few player accolades, which occurred recently that they wish to congratulate the players on. 


Firstly, the Greater London County Pool Association held their county trials for this season, and we are pleased to announce that Alex Biggs, Adam Watts George Taylor and Josh Page all qualified for the men’s squad and Jo Williams and Jade Holmes made it into the lady’s team. 


The SLKPA now have about 30 players in the London Men’s squad, (A B C teams and Seniors), and four in the lady’s team, an amazing achievement. 


Closer to home, the SLKPA had their interleague trials for this year’s squad and Anthony Lee, Akar Necati, Billy Russell, Dave Sparey and Dave Avery, (the trial champion) have all earned places. 


For more information on the SLKPA including league tables visit our website at www.slkpa.com or contact our 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.