Essex A had a great team performance to beat Norfolk in their final group game to secure second place in the group and progress in the knockout stages after a 24-16 win last Sunday.
The first session got Essex of to a good start Phil Banner and Frank Amoss won 19-12 in their opening game. The other pair Dave Amoss and Shirley Banner narrowly won with a 14-12 victory to get Essex into a good lead. Roger Dover responded for the home side to put another two points on the board with a 19-10 win. Pauline Childs could not cap off a great first session for Essex as she went down 24-6 to a great performance from Neil Davidson. As they head in to the second session the home side took a deserved 6-2 lead.
The second session was again good for Essex as Ian Arthur, Stewart Blackhall and Paul Cairns won 11-7. The other triple with Rita Blackhall, Eileen Smith-Allen performed very well together winning convincingly 18-5. The rearranged fours also did well with Peter Snelling, Brian Daley, Rose Hambelton and Peter Debenham winning 15-6. However the other changed four was unable to complete the clean sweep as Danny Curl, Alan, Heather Amoss and Peggy May lost 15-3. But at the break the home side were in the lead 12-4, a platform they hope they can build on in the second half to rack up the points to make sure of second place.
The third session was another good performance by the home side as they carried on their good form throughout the day as Pauline won to make up for her earlier lose with a 16-8 win. However Roger could not turn over the in-form Neil Davidson to lose 15-6. Dave and Shirley also made their day two out of two as they won another tight game 15-12. Although Phil and Frank could not complete win as they suffered a 22-5 loss, with both bonus points going to the away side to claw the points back.
As both sides went in the final session it was 16-12 with Norfolk closing the gap on the home side. However it was not looking good for the home side as both triples suffered losses as Ian, Stewart and Paul lost 15-12 and Rita, Eileen and Pat after being 10-6 up could not hold on and lost 11-10. The fours had better luck and retained the situation as Peter, Brian, Rose and Peter won a respectable 9-3 and Danny, Alan, Heather and Peggy finished off the day with a comfortable 10-3 win. The home side they took both bonuses in the triples and fours, as the triples kept both losses to a minimum finishing the day with a 24-16 win.
Essex put them selves 33 points in front of Suffolk as they played Cambridge the following day but could ot manage the task Essex had set. This puts both Norfolk and Essex in to the knockout stages of the A team knockouts in January.