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Middleton Cup

Middleton Cup v Surrey

Oxfordshire men will face Surrey on Saturday at Croydon Bowling Club 2pm. The team has now been selected: Middleton cup v Surrey

Middleton Cup: Oxon lose to Sussex

The second Middleton Cup match against Sussex at Oxford City and County on Saturday 10th June proved to be a game of two halves. The southern half of the green went Oxfordshire’s way with all three rinks scoring 23 shots to record wins. The northern half went Sussex’s way for them to win all three rinks.

Rink 1 was again the Banbury Borough rink skipped by Mark Sykes and a steady start was maintained throughout and they won by 5 shots. Rink 2 saw Baden Sparkes rink trailing by 4 after 10 ends but winning 9 of the final end saw them win by 10. Rink 3 was a similar story to rink 1 and Ray Gaskins brought his rink home by 8. Rink 4 was home to last week’s winning rink of Ryan Buckett with this week’s battle much closer throughout. Trailing by 8 shots after 19 ends hopes were raised with a four on end 20 but shots were limited to one on the 21 for them to lose by 3.

Mark Charlett won 10 of their ends but by significantly smaller margins than their opponents and lost by 14. A six on end 7 brought Paul Sharan level at 8 all but wins ony 2 of the remaining ends saw the heaviest defeat of the afternoon by 22 shots.

Playing his 100th game for Oxfordshire Jason King was awarded with a gold badge and David Leighfield was presented with a Middleton Cup flash.

Oxfordshire 109 6 points, Sussex 125 16 points.

J Abercrombie G Schwab A J Docherty M Sykes won 23-18
K Holloway K Alder C Gilkes B Sparkes won 23-13
M Nash D Leighfield S Cooper R Gaskins won 23-15
J Bland M Brain N Rae-Walsh R Buckett lost 16-19
S Witcombe A McIntyre J King M Charlett lost 12-26
S Watts P Mabbutt G May P Sharman lost 12-34.

Middleton Cup v Sussex

Oxofordshire men will face Sussex in the Middleton Cup on Saturday 10th June 2pm at Oxford City & County BC. The team has been selected: Middleton Cup v Sussex

Middleton Cup: Oxon lose to Kent

The first Middleton Cup match against Kent at Marden BC on Saturday 3rd June was played in glorious sunshine on a fast reliable green.

A good start by Oxfordshire resulted in a 17 shot lead after 5 ends. The lead was maintained for the next ten ends and at 15 ends they still held the lead albeit a reduced one of 6 shots. Thereafter things went well for Kent and after 18 ends they lead by 8.

Oxfordshire battled back and reduced the deficit to 6 shots by the end. The Banbury Borough rink skipped by Mark Sykes had a difficult start and trailed by 7 shots at 14ends but five consecutive winning ends mean they forced themselves into the lead and sharing the 2 final ends saw them win by 1.

Ray Gaskins and his rink had a close struggle on rink 2 and despite winning more ends than their opponents they lost by 2 shots. Baden Sparkes and co started well and lead by 8 shots after 10 ends. Thereafter they won only 2
more ends and they lost by 9 shots.

Ryan Buckett returned from Berkshire after 8 years and had an interesting start to his Middleton Cup campaign. After 15 ends they led by 10 shots despite only losing 2 ends (the 2nd and 11 th but by 7 and 6 shots respectively). Sharing the final ends they won by 9 shots.

Paul Sharman led his rink to a 1 shot lead after 15 ends. They failed to win another end and lost by 9 shots.

Mark Charlett charged to a 14 shot lead after 13 ends. Losing the next 6 ends the lead was reduced to 1, but wins on the final 2 ends saw him and his rink home by 4 shots.

Middleton Cup debutants Alan Carter (Banbury Central) Steve Aldren (Carterton) and Jim Bland (Shiplake) all performed with honour as did Andy McIntyre (West Witney on his return to win his Middleton Cup flash.

Oxfordshire 121 6 points Kent 127 16 points.

J Abercrombie G Schwab A J Docherty M Sykes won 21-20
A Carter T Prew S Cooper R Gaskins lost 19-21
K Holloway S Aldren K Alder b Sparkes lost 18-27
J Bland M Brain N Rae-Walsh R Buckett won 27-18
S Watts P Mabbutt W Parker P Sharman lost 12-21
M Nash A McIntyre D Leighfield M Charlett won 24-20

Middleton Cup: Oxon v Kent selection

The Middleton cup team to face Kent on 3rd June at Marden Bowls Club has now been selected: Oxon v Kent

Middleton Cup trial a wash out

The second Middleton Cup trial match against Gloucestershire at Oxford City & County on Saturday 20th May was curtailed by bad weather. With most rinks having completed 16 ends and after heavy and persistent rain the match was finally abandoned with Oxfordshire losing by 99 shots to 91.

The rinks of Jason King and Ryan Buckett were well in control when the weather intervened. After being 14 shots adrift at 10 ends the rink of Mark Sykes was fighting back to be just 7 shots behind at the close. The rinks of Baden-Sparkes and Paul Sharman both lost narrowly whilst that of Ray Gaskins struggled to come to terms with their rink.

Oxfordshire 91, Gloucestershire 99

S Witcombe T Prew P Comley B Sparkes lost 15-16
J Abercrombie P Mabbutt A J Docherty M Sykes lost 13-20
D Leighfield K Holloway S Cooper J King won 25-16
S Watts A McIntyre G May P Sharman lost 15-20
A Carter S Aldren C Gilkes R Gaskins lost 6-22
J Bland M Brain N Rae-Walsh R Buckett won 19-5

Oxon men beat Northants in Middleton Cup trial

Oxfordshire Bowling Association started their 2017 Middleton Cup campaign with a narrow win over Northamptonshire at Kingsthorpe Bowling Club.

In the first of 2 trial games the Oxfordshire team won by 124 shots to 111. The rinks of Paul Sharman, David Leighfield, and Nick Rae-Welsh all won whilst the rinks of Ray Gaskins and Baden-Sparkes both lost by 1 shot after being level after 20 ends.

The rink of Mark Sykes at 10 ends were up by 7 shots but only scored a further 3 in the final 11 ends and finally lost by 7 shots.

With three players making their Middleton Cup debut for Oxfordshire (Steve Witcombe, Jim Bland and Alan Carter) and the return of Baden-Sparkes after being out injured last season the Oxfordshire team made a great start to this year’s campaign. All the newcomers settled in well which was very encouraging. The second trail match is against Gloucestershire at Oxford City & County on Saturday afternoon (May 20th).

Oxfordshire 124, Northants 111

Steve Witcombe, Bradley Squires, Paul Comley, Baden Sparkes lost 24 – 25
Sam Watts, George Schwab, Will Parker, Paul Sharman won 21 – 11
Mick Nash, Keith Holloway, Jason King, Nick Rae-Welsh won 20 – 19
Jim Bland, Melvin Brain, Kevin Alder, David Leighfield won 25 – 14
Alan Carter, Trevor Prew, Chris Gilkes, Ray Gaskins lost 17 – 18
Joe Abercrombie, Paul Mabbutt, Shane Cooper, Mark Sykes lost 17 – 24

M Cup: Oxon narrowly defeated by Hants

Oxfordshire’s final match of the campaign against a strong Hampshire side at Atherly Bowls Club ended with a narrow defeat by 14 shots (Oxfordshire 108 shots against Hampshire’s 124). The points were 4 to Oxfordshire and 18 to Hampshire.

With Surrey having played earlier in the day and winning 20-2 against Buckinghamshire the group winners had already been decided. The match therefore lacked the usual competitive edge as both counties had lost the opportunity to win the group.

The rink of Ian Snowdon started steadily amd lead by 2 shots after 5 ends but after picking up a 6 on end 10 went on to win comfortably and maintain his unbeaten record in this year’s campaign. The rink of Mark Sykes was always in control and went on to win by 6 shots. Dropping 5 shots on the 20 th end resulted in a narrow defeat by 2 shots for the rink of Mark Charlett. Another close contest resulted in a 4 shot defeat for Ray Gaskins.The rinks of Paul Sharman and Will Parker were always up against it and both lost.

Whilst it was a disappointing result to end this year’s campaign on, to still be in contention to finish top in the group going into the last match was a great achievement and something that all the squad members should be proud of.

Rink Scores:

H Beall T Prew I Henwood R Gaskins 21, M Aldren D Kerr J Biggs C Daniels 25.
G Schwab C Gilkes A J Docherty I Snowdon 27, S Nash S Doih P Ward J Bright 16.
K Holloway P Comley J King M Charlett 21, A Nethercliffe C Taylor C Thresher L May 23.
J Abercrombie P Mabbutt S Cooper M Sykes 18, J Leggett A White M Griffiyhs P Cooke 12.
S Watts M Brain B Lambourne P Sharman 14, L McCribben A Anderson R Morgan N Duncan 23.
M Nash K Alder N Rae-Welsh W Parker 7, D Taylor C Cranham C Bailey J Marsland 25.

M Cup V Hants selection

Oxfordshire will face Hampshire in the Middleton Cup on Saturday 9th June 2pm at Atherly Bowls Club. The team has been selected: MCup v Hants

M Cup: Oxon beat Surrey after rain stops play

Oxfordshire’s third match of the Middleton cup campaign against a strong Surrey side at Oxford City and County B C was dominated by heavy rain. Playing 3 rinks on each green because of heavy rainfall before the start, hopes were not high for a completion of the 21 ends, Expectations of completing 72 ends in total increased throughout the afternoon for the match to be regarded as complete. Having completed 83 ends the rain had the final word with the sides each leading on three rinks but Oxfordshire had a 15 shot win. (Oxfordshire 83 shots against Surrey’s 68. The points were 16 to Oxfordshire and 6 to Surrey.

The result means that Oxfordshire are just 5 points behind leaders Surrey in in the group, with all to play for in the last game on 8 th July.

Rink Scores:

S Watts P Comley B Lambourne P Sharman 7, H Cushen P Bennett D Morris S Clarke 12 after 13 ends.
H Beall T Prew I Henwood R Gaskins 8, Y Friday D Olver L Dickson M Sigmoney 16 after 14 ends.
K Holloway I Kibble-White J King M Charlett 17, C Souter J Cable E O’Flynn G Clark 10 after 15 ends.
P Lopez C Weller A J Docherty I Snowdon 14, J Winter J O’Leary M White D Hennessy 6 after 15 ends.
J Abercrombie P Mabbutt S Cooper M Sykes 24, M Porter R Cushen J Graham N Beeson 7 after 17 ends.
D Leighfield K Alder N Rae-Welsh W Parker 13, A Neal S Shanley F Morton P McDonnell 17 after 15 ends.