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Friday, 19 December 2014

Defeat spells end of Cumbria's national indoor bowls hopes

Cumbria Indoor Bowls Club’s last chance of a representative in one of the four main disciplines at the National Championships was scuppered on Sunday when Paul Barlow, Trevor Taylor and Stephen Farish went down to Alan Foulds, Tony King and Mark Dawes of Blackpool at Penrith.

It was a tight game throughout and after the sixth end when Blackpool led 7-5 there was never more than a single shot between the two triples.

Several times the Carlisle trio looked poised to score a count but a mixture of good bowls and the occasional slice of fortune from Dawes saw the two triples play the last end all square. And on that end it was the Lancastrians who just came out on top to put the seal on what has been a disappointing season for the Cumbria club.

Cumbria Indoor Bowls Club’s new double triples league, for clubs throughout the area, is heading for an exciting finish and the destination of a total prize fund of £630 is still far from clear.

Favourites going into last Sunday’s games were the Lockerbie Lions but they came unstuck in their battle with Courtfield Cougars and the points were shared 3-3. Sam Anderson, Gordon Armstrong and Eddie McGarr had a good battle with Betty Burgess, Len Docherty and Mike Dewhurst but looked to have taken the initiative when scoring five shots in two ends to lead 12-9.

The Cougars struck back, however, to pick up a single and a three to snatch a win despite a tremendous effort by Eddie McGarr on the last end.

The other game where George Braithwaite, Kevin Johnston and Paul Campbell met Tom Linton, Neil Shearer and Willie Linton was equally close though the Cougars looked to be on course for victory when leading 10-4.

In the last three ends, however, the Lions came to life picking up scores of 5-1-1 to snatch a single shot win and halve the points overall. Courtfield Cobras have slipped of late but back to full-strength this week enjoyed two good wins against the Penrith Pumas. Steve Delucci, Cindy Edmondson and Anthony Little were made to fight all the way by Bill Hunter, Ken Hesleden and Geoff Steele but scored 11 shots on the last three ends to secure a twelve shot win.

In the other game Jackie Wilson, John McGree and Ray Gall made the better start against Dennis Noble, Harry Beech and Andrew Lee but in the second half of this game it was the Penrith Pumas trio which finished the stronger scoring ten shots to one in the last five ends to go down by just two shots.

Sunday’s final game was the Wetheral derby when the Wasps met the Wolves.

Both games were well contested and could have gone either way but it was the Wasps who came out on top taking all six points in a game where the result could easily have been reversed. Pat Griffiths, Bob Sewell and Steve Griffiths were just two shots ahead with two to play but scores of one and four saw them beat Peter Yates 14-7.

In the other game Ken Graham for the Wolves led 9-6 after nine ends but failed to add to his tally as Helen Sewell, Carol Smith and George Goodall racked up seven shots in the last four ends to win 13-9.

On Sunday, Lions meet Eagles and this seems likely to be a great battle while Cobras meet Wolves and Cougars play Wasps.

The results of Sunday’s game may well settle the league but there is also every chance that the final positions will go right to the wire.

Also looking ahead to this weekend and there are some interesting club semi-final ties scheduled for both Saturday and Sunday.

At 10am, on Saturday, the Gents Restricted singles game between John Brew and Tom Linton takes place and at the same time Sheena Kirkpatrick meets Dorothy Jefferson and Janice Gower meets Victoria Kyle in the Ladies pairs and Paul Campbell plays Peter Angood in the Gents Restricted pairs.

The principal attraction on Sunday will be the two Gents Singles semi-finals which are to be played at noon. Neil Karge meets Stephen Farish and Stuart Airey will play Craig Docherty, two games which should prove attractive for spectators.

On Sunday at 10am, John Crozier plays Anthony Little in the Gents Restricted Pairs while at 12noon Stephen Farish meets Joe Menzies in the Gents Pairs. At 2pm in the Mixed Pairs Paul Campbell plays Rae Graham and Karen Edmondson meets Kate Peacock.

News from outdoor bowls is that Bowls England has agreed to revert the Under 25 Double Rink to Regional Finals and only the last four teams will therefore travel to Worthing. This will come into force in 2013.

One other point of interest or worry whichever way you look at it is the news that Southport BC are to be charged £12,000 a year by the local authority to keep the green in existence.

The club will manage this for the coming season from reserves which they have managed to build but unless there is a change in policy it seems unlikely to be a long term agreement.

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