There were 46 attendees and every club was represented, except the one-team clubs Haddington, LBPTT and Meadowbank whose representatives were unable to attend.
President’s Report – Ken Benjamin announced that he would be standing down after an eventful six years. During this time the league had seen the introduction of the excellent online system developed, installed and administered by its creator, Dr Robert Inder, and adoption of Rating Central (to assess relative strength across all divisions) courtesy of its pre-eminent proponent, Gordon Muir. His own involvement with beginners’ table tennis had contributed to the creation of a new Division 4 to accommodate those new players. It also allowed new clubs Fife and Haddington an opportunity to play in the league. Fife also participated in Divisions 1 & 3 with its handicap cup team finishing as runners-up. Ken Ben mentioned that the low point during his time was the sudden and unexpected death on 1/11/11 of the vastly experience Match Secretary John Glen. Ending on a more upbeat note Ken Ben then recalled the best two rallies and best two shots he had witnessed after paying tribute to the then unbeaten runs of younger players like Craig Howieson, Christopher Wheeler and Calum Morrison who had 100% records in Edinburgh’s top flight and the more mature Willie Mabon who was undefeated against top Scottish opposition at Largs 2010. A major success was raising about £900 from his film nights over last four years.
Match Secretary’s Report – Russell Frith echoed the President’s sentiments about the league expanding to five divisions with the introduction of Division 4. He also welcomed the innovative idea of allowing the Penicuik Division 4 team to play all their matches as best of three ends to ensure early nights for youngsters. He went on to congratulate the winning teams in each division, play-off winners and Calum Morrison for achieving 100% in the Premier. Last year’s AGM agreed that the four week rule should be applied more strictly therefore there had been noticeably fewer postponed matches this season. Not surprisingly it was the same clubs who did plead for extensions to be granted. However, even with both clubs agreeing about need for original postponement, some disputes arose later on about whose fault it was initially. The league tables and leading averages for all divisions formed part of the report and will be reproduced on the website.
Handicap Cup Report – Ken Ben reminded everyone that handicap cup matches should take priority over postponed league matches during H/C Cup weeks. There had been some concessions in the earlier rounds but this had resulted from some clubs not realising postponements allowed beyond designated week. Some matches were closer than others but most were either 5-4 or 5-3 so the handicaps allocated via Ratings Central rankings were supported by the results. Murrayfield 1 beat Fife 3 by 5-3 in an exciting final at Murrayfield on Thu 9/4/15.
Treasurer’s Report - Moira Atkinson was pleased to report a healthy £3786.44 balance to pass on to her successor. Key points were that funds increased by £1258.53 in 2014-15, including a £100 increase in membership fees. This meant that ELTTL fees need not be increased next year, but TTS fees would be set at the TTS AGM on Saturday 4/7/15. Moira then thanked Ken Ben for all his hard work in raising £224.70 by hosting his film nights.
Coaching Report – Lindsay Muir drew attention to the many events that had taken place during the season. These included taster sessions at Meadowbank last July in the lead up to the Commonwealth Games, a Paralympic Multi-sport Event at Forresters involving assistance from Pete Lugton, George Oliver and Graham Muir. Volunteers now being sought by Drew McLaren to help out at another such event to take place on Wednesday 20/5/15 at Bathgate Academy. At the Scottish Primary Schools Event last November Edinburgh players once again had excellent results with Faye Leggett retaining the title with Holly Stephen and Amelia Norbury also making the Scottish team. They all went on to represent Scotland at the British Primary Schools in England, winning a team Silver medal. Faye went on to win the individual, the first Scottish girl ever to do so! Holly also did well to win the consolation event. Well done also to Calum Morrison, who won the Boys 6 Nations Singles Event in Cardiff, his first international title. Other things over the year included demonstrations at Cramond Primary School and Clermiston PS plus an Edinburgh P6 Racquets Tournament (14 boys and 14 girls). Photographs are included on ELTTL website.
The number of league teams and handicap cup teams likely to be entered by clubs looks likely to be similar to those for 2014-15 season.
Division 4 winners - North Merchiston IV
Division 3 winners – Fife II
Division 2 winners – Penicuik III
Division 1 winners – Murrayfield IV
Premier Division winners – Murrayfield I
Division 4 Individual Winner was Gordon Aien (Haddington) with 90.0%
Division 3 Individual Winner was John Osinski (Fife II) with 96.1%
Division 2 Winner was James Forrest (Murrayfield IX) with 92.6%
Division 1 Winner was Alan Nisbet (ESC II) with 90.0%
Premier Division Winner was Calum Morrison (Murrayfield I) with 100%
Handicap Cup/Edinburgh Evening News & Dispatch Rosebowl was won by Murrayfield 1
Dr Mike Allison Young Player of the Year – John Hannah (ESC I)
Most Improved Player of the Year – Callum Stephen (West Lothian IV)
The John Glen Players’ Player of the Year – Jeff Clark (Corstorphine IV)
Kirkwood Trophy for significant contribution to table tennis in the region – Charlie Ellis
Stewart McGowan trophy for best Inter-League Squad (Largs Mar’15) – Edinburgh Squad
Two TTS Honorary Lifetime Awards were made, viz. to:
Tommy Sutherland Sr (Corstorphine VII) and Jack Oughton (Edinburgh International V)
Pictures of winners here
Some changes occurred during the election of office bearers. Composition now:
- President – Lindsay Muir
- Vice-President – Alan Easton
- Secretary – Lynn Somerville
- Treasurer – Russell Frith
- Match Secretary – David Stephen
- Chief Online Administrator – Robert Inder
The other committee members will be:
- Tom Wallace (Corstorphine)
- Ken Benjamin (EITTC)
- Ken Cadogan (EITTC)
- Simon Hughes (EU)
- Brian Bailey (Penicuik)
- Chris Shaw (ESC)
- Steve Dow (Fife)
- Mike Letchford (NMC)
- Graham Chambers (West Lothian)
A straightforward Corstorphine proposal to simplify postponements was passed unopposed, viz. All intra-club postponements must be played within 4 playing weeks whereas inter-club postponements can exceed 4 playing weeks provided a revised and fixed match date is agreed between the clubs and entered on ELTTL scoring site 7 days either side of original date.
After an in-depth debate two West Lothian proposals for constitutional change were unanimously rejected. Instead the AGM voted unanimously to form a sub-committee to bring the constitution up to date using clubs as members rather than players. West Lothian’s other proposal regarding starting times was amended at the AGM as follows: All matches should start at the time stated on the online system. The default time for matches to begin playing would be 7pm therefore players need to be there before then. Start times earlier than 6:30pm not permitted unless sanctioned by the league committee, e.g. because of finishing time constraints. In the event that a team turns up later than 30 minutes after the scheduled start time then any games curtailed by the finishing time will be forfeit by the late team. If no one is late then home team automatically lose any curtailed games.
Several other, less controversial changes were made to the rules to clarify:
How substitutes are used when two teams from same club play each other:
To reduce deadline for putting results online from 7 days to 96 hours and set fine for late submissions at a standard £5 per offence;
State that in the event of a play-off match ending in a 5-5 draw then the team with the better ends difference wins. If teams have same ends difference then the team that won the doubles will be the winner; and finally
Any player allowed by the league to play in a division lower than their playing strength will be prohibited from participating in the doubles unless/he is one of only two players.
There will be no increase in ELTTL fees this year. A flat £5 fine will apply for late scoring.
All key office bearers to receive same honoraria as last year.
Introduction of new poly balls – The committee will check protocols with TTS and issue guidance to all clubs well before the start of next season.
Outgoing President Ken Ben said that it had mostly been a pleasure serving the league but he was now looking forward to more leisure time under President Lindsay Muir.