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Oxon men beat Herts in friendly

Oxfordshire hosted Hertfordshire at Kidlington on Tuesday 1st August.

Sharing the rinks at 3 each the overall result of the match was determined on rink 1 where Barry Willoughby Percy Strange Allan Hall and Brian Bloomfield recovered from a slow start in which they conceded 1 shot on all of the first three ends before finding form to take 17 of the last 18 ends to win by 24 shots. Paul Robbins rink’s win by 17 shots were eually effective and Alan Ley produced a single on the 21st end to win by 1.

Oxfordshire 135 Hertfordshire 106.

Scores:-

Barry Willoughby Percy Strange Allan Hall Brian Bloomfield won 28-4.
Bernie May Larry Eltringham Glynn MiddletonIan Whelpton lost 14-24
Steve Tolhurst Bill Jarvie John McGeough Melvin Brain lost 23-24
Chris Lewis John Timms Alan Wase Paul Robbins won 28-11
Paul Demczak Alex Fleming David Wedge Mick Morris lost 20-22
Brian Ealey Nigel Satchell Brian Ray Alan Ley won 22-21

Oxon men lose to Surrey in HCL

Returning to Eastbourne after a successful President’s Tour to play Sussex in the Home Counties League Oxfordshire experienced a trouhle-free coach trip round the M25. On Saturday 29th July they were looking for their first win in this year’s competition.

Playing in rain throughout the afternoon the weather finally brought the players off for the final time after 15 or so ends.

David Leighfield and Kevin Alder lead their rinks to narrow victories but the other 4 skips all failed to produce wins and Oxfordshire went down by 24 shots.

Oxfordshire 71 4 points, Sussex 95 18 points.

The rink scores were:-

S Tolhurst S Gibson I Whelpton M Brain lost 10-16
S Witcombe T Prew S Aldren W Campion lost 18-22
A Kernish A Hall R Barnett C Weller lost 8-22
B Squires A Fleming C Cox D Leighfield won 15-10
C Lewis S Jones B Bloomfield R Gaskins lost 6-14
P Demczak T Gripe P Robbins K Alder won 14-11

Oxon men lose to Wilts in county friendly

Oxfordshire hosted Wiltshire at Witney Town on Tuesday 25th July.

With only one rink winning (by two shots), one drawing, two losing by a single shot and two heavy defeats Oxfordshire lost the match by 17 shots.

Oxfordshire 109 Wiltshire 126.

Scores:-

Mick Saunders John Stephens Martin Oliver Richard Barnett lost 20-21.
Mel Cameron John Hurran Allan Hall Alan Ley lost 17-18
Chris Lewis Bill Jarvie John Benfield Ian Whelpton lost 16-23
Steve Tolhurst Colin Haley John McGeough Mick Morris drew 21-21.
Mike Jones John Hicks Paul Demczak Alan Wase won 19-17
Roy Radband Eddie Dorling Percy Strange Brian Bloomfield lost 16-26

Oxon men beat Isle of Wight in friendly

After the Wiltshire defeat the following day Oxfordshire travelled to Three Mile Cross BC for their annual friendly against Isle of Wight hoping to reverse their fortunes.

With wins on 4 rinks Oxfordshire recorded a comfortable win by 24 shots.

Oxfordshire 124 Isle of Wight 100.

Scores:-

Alan Carter Eddie Dorling Henry Franklin Allan Hall won 28-11
Mel Cameron John Jarvis Phil Warner Richard Barnet won 24-18
Paul Demczak Bill Jarvie Mick Morris Paul Robbins won 20-14
Bradley Squires John Timms John McGeough Alan Ley lost 14-23
Chris Lewis Alex Fleming Alan Wase Ken Williams won 21-14
Roy Radband Steve Tolhurst David Wedge Ian Whelpton lost 17-20

League week 12

This week’s matches resolved some promotion and relegation issues but left others still as muddled as ever!

In Division 1, Headington confirmed what we have all though for some weeks and clinched the title. Their 5-1 defeat of City and County and Watlington’s loss to Banbury Central leaves them fifteen points apart with two matches to play. They need thirty more shots to top one thousand for the season, a league record, so I am told, as is their 350 point shot difference!

In the match itself, Howard Watt’s rink took the prize with a twenty shot margin, only Alan Ley’s men were able to deliver for City and County with a narrow win.

Banbury went to Watlington needing a win and, surprisingly given earlier form this season, came away with one and were disappointed with only four points having led on all four rinks at eighteen ends! Excellent wins for Ian Whelpton and Will Campion’s rinks, with the former going 14-0 up at the start of their match, meant that the home side struggled.

(I have not had a full result for the South Oxford v Carterton match but I gather the result was four – two to South and I have record this information on the latest league tables.)

What the above results mean is that South Oxford are now relegated; they only have one match to play and cannot catch the teams above them. Carterton, Central and West Witney now fight to avoid filling the second relegation place, with Carterton favourites as their remaining fixtures are against Watlington and Headington.

Division 2 remains as fluid as ever! Kidlington are almost there and can clinch promotion next week away at Shiplake. Despite being held by Adderbury this week, Mike Peterson’s men clinched the match points for the leaders with a fourteen shot victory and rivals Witney Mills and Town will both need big wins in their final two matches to overtake them, as they tussle for the second promotion place.

Witney Town did their own promotion prospects no harm with an emphatic whitewash of Chipping Norton with all fours rinks restricting their opponents to low scores.

At the bottom of the table, Adderbury’s two points moves them to a position where they can still avoid relegation but they will need to score seven points more than Chipping Norton and Shiplake to do so.

In Division 3, Charlbury’s 6-0 defeat of Bicester means that they are all but promoted; Blackbird Leys will need to win their final two matches 6-0 to overtake them. Jim Stevens and Eddie Abbey’s rinks both scored thirty plus shots whilst restricting their opponents to single figures in a very big win for the leaders. Unfortunately for Bicester this league is so close that their defeat means almost certain relegation as they have only one more fixture left to play.

Blackbird Leys hopes of promotion were pretty much dashed by Hanborough who defeated them 5 -1 in a close match with three rinks finally going Hanborough’s way.

With Banbury Central losing at home to Headington and only having one fixture left they go from promotion candidates to relegation prospects! An eight shot win for Martin Kershaw proved enough for the visitors in an otherwise very close match.

Hanborough host Charlbury next week in a match that may decide both promotion places and the division title.

Congratulations go to Division 4 champions Thame. Their comprehensive defeat of Oxford University Press means that they cannot be caught by the two chasing clubs as they each have only one remaining fixture.

Indeed, Bloxham are still in the hunt for the final promotion place as they still have two fixtures to play and, having defeated South Oxford this week, thanks to Tony Gardner’s rink’s big win, they travel to champions Thame next week still able to catch those directly above them.

City and County moved into second place with their 5-1 defeat of Woodstock though the match would have been closer had Paul Shipton’s triple not had to forfeit twenty-five percent of their score for Woodstock.

City and County go to West Oxford next week knowing that six points will guarantee them promotion regardless of South Oxford’s result when they visit the newly crowned champions in the last week of the season.

Match Results
League Tables
Report

League week 11

First this week an update on the Gilkes after their car crash. Bob and his wife are now at home and making small steps towards recovery having suffered chest and trunk injuries from seat belt and airbags. They hope to be back at the bowls club as soon as possible.

In the league, it was a week of close matches, even if the final scores seem to say otherwise.

With Division 1 leaders Headington not playing, Watlington had the chance to narrow the gap between them. Whilst they did so, with a four – two win over City and County, this may not be enough to give them a realistic chance of the title. Indeed, should they drop points to Banbury Central this week and Headington win their match, at home to City and County, the title will have been decided.

Watlington’s win was set up by Chris Gilkes’ twenty-three shots win. Whilst this more than cancelled Alan Leys impressive eighteen shot margin for City and County, it would have been even more decisive if, in the comeback of the season so far, Colin Pollard’s rink had not contrived to come from 23 – 9 down after sixteen ends to win the match 24 – 23 for City and County!

The other fixtures in the division were more about relegation than winning titles. West Witney’s win at Carterton looks impressive at first glance but the rink scores show that Carterton were also fighting for their division one lives. Paul Sharman’s rink were ahead at eighteen ends only to drop a five to Andy McIntyre and be unable to recover; David Leighfield scored four shots in the last two ends to win his rinks whilst Paul Skidmore saved the best for the end being fifteen – five down after thirteen ends but then only dropping one more shot to win his rink by two.

However, the real relegation battle was at Banbury Central were the home side need to beat strugglers South Oxford convincingly to have any chance of staying up themselves. Once Will Campion had gone fourteen – zero up on his rink, the rest of his teammates settled to the task with Mick Andrew drawing ahead in the second half of his game and Keith McNeil scrapping a last end win in a very tight match. Five points may yet be enough for Central giving what is still to come on the fixture list!

In Division 2, leaders Kidlington defeated Chipping Norton comfortably, only Norman Sifford able to make an impression for the home side winning by thirteen shots. Whilst mathematically not yet sure of promotion, Kidlington could clinch this with their next match.

Adderbury concocted a lifeline for themselves with a win at home to Shiplake, who showed their problems with travel distances fielding only fourteen players. Biggest win of the match was for Mike Jelfs’ rink who beat the opposition triple by fourteen shots.

Division 3 remains as topsy-turvy as ever! This week’s matches saw Banbury Central involved in another odd result, this time to their disadvantage. Winning on two rinks and drawing a third proved insufficient to take the match points as Ken Williams rink won by twelve shots to clinch the match for Hanborough, doing so with an impressive second half to the game where they dropped only two shots. Both clubs now tie on points and are half a point behind second place Blackbird Leys whose comfortable win away at Bicester was down to solid bowling rather than any single rink winning by a large margin.

Whilst the top four may think that they are fighting out the promotion places, Headington’s whitewash of Chadlington move them out of the relegation zone and, with three matches still to play, they remain close to the promotion dogfight. Martin Kershaw and Steve Gould skipped impressive victories for Headington with the latter taking the prize with a twenty shot win.

Woodstock’s demolition of West Oxford was the outstanding match in Division 4. However, wins on all four rinks, including a twenty shot margin for Dave Francis’ men, and scoring a century in the process was still not enough to lift them off the bottom of the table!

The other two matches appear to have been close affairs, indeed South Oxford’s win, at home to Oxford University Press was; David Bye’s twelve shot win cancelling Richard Cann’s ten shots for OUP. However, Thame’s defeat of City and County, whilst also four points to two, concluded with the home side scoring forty-four shots more than their opponents thanks to big wins for both Paul Heafey and Ray Plested’s men with the latter taking the star prize with their thirsty-three shot winning margin.

Match Results
League Tables
Report

Men’s finals day

The Men’s OBA Finals day was hosted at Chipping Norton Bowling Club on Sunday with 6 finals played.

Men's 2 wood singles winner 2017

The first game of the day was the two wood singles final between Watlington’s Sam Watts and Carterton’s Stuart Richens. A strong start by Richens gave him an early 7-2 lead before Watts fought back well to take it to 10 shots apiece after 14 ends. Playing the last end Watts picked up a crucial double to force an extra end. The extra end played and Watts delivered a fantastic second bowl to draw the jack and stay for a front toucher, with Richens narrowly missing the bowl which saw Watts be only the fourth name on the trophy since its inception in 2012.

Men's U25s singles winner 2017

The second game of the morning was the under 25 singles between West Witney’s David Leighfield and Watlington’s Shane Cooper. A thoroughly strong performance from the start saw Cooper go 12 shots to 5 up early on before Leighfield got the score to 16-8 down, but 5 shots in 2 ends saw Cooper claim his first junior singles title on his last try due to retiring through age at the end of this season.

Men's Triples winners 2017

The final game of the morning was an all Headington triples final between John Philpott, Nathan Lewis and Howard Watts against Colin Whitehead, Ray Gaskins and Nick Rae-Welsh. A good start from both sides saw the scoreboard at 9-5 in Rae-Welsh’s favour at 8 ends before 6 shots in quick succession stretched their lead further to 15-6 at 12 ends. Although winning 5 of the last 6 ends, it wasn’t enough for Watts and his men to catch up and they ended up losing 16 shots to 14 to Rae-Welsh and his triple.

The presentation of trophies for the mornings winners were presented by President Bill Jarvie before lunch and snacks were enjoyed by all.

Men's singles winner 2017

The afternoon kicked off with the Singles final on the show rink in front of a packed crowd, between Banbury Borough’s Mark Sykes and Headington’s Ray Gaskins. A thoroughly enjoyable game to watch from start to conclusion saw world class bowling from both competitors. Sykes took a 16 shot to 13 lead before 7 shots were picked up by Gaskins in two of three ends to take the score to 20-18. Gaskins was holding game with two shots before a fantastic last bowl from Sykes see him clinch a single and another end to play. The final end saw Gaskins again holding with Sykes narrowly missing the offending wood and Gaskins winning 21 shots to 19. It has to be noted of the fantastic efforts by both in an intense and quality game of bowls.

Men's fours winners 2017

The penultimate game of the afternoon saw the fours final between Headington’s John Philpott, Nathan Lewis, Gary May and Howard Watts up against Carterton’s Tim Jupp, Gordon Walker, Steve Aldren and Stuart Richens. A 6 shot pickup on the first end set the Toon rink up well for the afternoon’s game. A great fight back from the Headington four saw the score drawing at 11 shots apiece at 11 ends before Carterton really ramped up the pressure picking up 7 shots to Headington’s 1 seeing the score reach 18-12 in Carterton’s favour. A second 6 shot pick up of the game for Carterton made it extremely difficult for the Headington rink to catch up and the overall score finished 27 shots to 13 to Carterton.

Men's pairs winners 2017

The final game of the day saw Banbury Borough’s Darren Sharpe and A J Docherty against West Witney’s Will Parker and Kevin Alder. As they did in the semi-final, another strong start from the Witney bowlers saw them take an 11 shot to nil lead at 5 ends before the Borough pairing bowled well to get the score to 12 shots to 10 down at 11 ends. Unfortunately for the Borough lads, that was the last end they scored on as the Witney pair dominated in the second half seeing them pick up 17 shots and running out as 29 shots to 10 winners.

Presentation of trophies for the afternoon’s winners by Bill Jarvie saw the day come to a close and what a fantastic day it was.

A great day was put on by Chipping Norton Bowling Club with great facilities and catering provided throughout, so a big thanks to Roberta and her team of helpers for this.
Another thank you goes to the two markers for the day, Ian Whelpton and Steve Witcombe and the umpire for the day, Tony Backer-Holst.

Men’s Semi-Finals

The Men’s Semi-Finals were played at Thame Bowling Club on Sunday 16th July, Monday 17th July and Tuesday 18th July.

In the morning of the Sunday, a pair’s game, a triples game and a fours game were played, all battling for their spaces at Leamington for the national finals.
The First game saw a rink from Headington of Bernie May, Mark Kirby, Shaun Claridge and Paul Mabbutt up against a Carterton rink consisting of Tim Jupp, Steve Aldren, Stuart Richens and skipped by Paul Sharman. This was a hugely tense battle throughout with neither side able to pull away. At 12 ends the score was 10 shots to 6 in Headington’s favour. Only 11 shots were scored over the next 7 ends meaning after 19 ends played it was all square at 13 shots apiece. Headington picked up a single shot to go one in front playing the last end. Carterton had the last bowl of the last end which forced an extra end to be played at 14 shots each. The extra end played and with Sharman’s first bowl to draw shot within inches, Mabbutt couldn’t replace it meaning the Toon rink qualified to Leamington, a second time for three of them in a week!

The Second game saw a pair’s game between Banbury Borough’s Darren Sharpe and A J Docherty and Watlington youngsters Sam Watts and Chris Gilkes. At 10 ends the board was all square at 10 shots each, but the Borough lads pushed on well to pick 14 shots over the next 7 ends with the Watlington pairing only able to reply scoring 3 shots, taking the borough pair into a 22 shots to 12 lead. Watlington were only able to pick up another single shot before the game finished 25 shots to 13 in Banbury Borough’s favour.

The third game saw a triples game between Headington’s Colin Whitehead, Ray Gaskins and Nick Rae-Welsh up against Woodstock’s triple comprising of Brian Clarke, Keith Comley and Paul Shipton. After 8 ends the game was very tight, with the score at 10 shots to 7 in Headington’s favour before a big push over the next four ends to pick up 12 shots to take the score to 22-7. The gap was too great to claw back for the Woodstock triple and they eventually lost out to Headington 25 shots to 13.

Lunch was then greatly received by competitors and spectators alike before the afternoon games got underway.

The first game of the afternoon was the second pair’s semi-final between West Witney’s Will Parker and Kevin Alder up against a Carterton pairing of Tim Jupp and Stuart Richens. The West Witney pair started strongly developing a 17 shots to 3 lead after 10 ends. From then on it was hard for either side to pick up a big shot count due to fantastic bowls played by all 4 players involved, with only 9 shots scored over the next 8 ends, taking the score to 19-10 in the Witney pair’s favour. A big count wasn’t made by the Toon boys which sent the West Witney pair through 24 shots to 10 victors and a maiden trip to Leamington for Kevin Alder to the national Finals.

The Second game of the afternoon was a singles game between Headington club mates Nick Rae-Welsh and Ray Gaskins, who qualified with each other in the triples, no less than an hour before competing against each other. A close start saw the score at 11 shots to 10 in Gaskins’ favour, before he scored 6 shots to Rae-Welsh’s 2 to take him 17-11. 3 shots over the next 3 ends were scored by Rae-Welsh before Gaskins ran out as winner, 21 shots to 14 and two qualifications to Leamington in a single day.

The final game saw the second fours semi-final between a Headington rink of John Philpott, Nathan Lewis, Gary May and Howard Watts up against a Watlington rink of Sam Watts, Adie Twinn, Steve Gilkes and skipped by Chris Gilkes. A solid start from the Watlington men took them 6-1 in front after just 3 ends before the Headington rink won 6 ends without reply taking a 13 shots to 6 lead at 9 ends. 10 shots scored between the rinks made the score 17-12 at 17 ends in Headington’s favour before they picked up 6 shots over the next three ends to take them through 23-12 victors and the final place on offer of the day to play in the national finals.

On Monday night the second triples game was played between Carterton’s Stuart Richens, Robbie Clanfield and Baden Sparks against Headington’s triple of John Philpott, Nathan Lewis and Howard Watts. After a very even first 6 ends with both leads playing some excellent bowls with the shot changing hands bowl after bowl, the Headington triple then took control of the game by winning the next 4 ends scoring 11 shots without reply. Despite winning 4 of the next 6 ends, Carterton could not make inroads into the lead Headington had established and they ran out winners with the overall score 20 shots to 13 to the Headington triple.

On Tuesday night the second singles game was played between Banbury Borough’s Mark Sykes against Carterton’s Stuart Richens. After some first class bowling by Mark Sykes, he took an early 4-1 lead but with some excellent bowls, Stuart Richens fought back well to win the next 4 ends scoring 10 shots without reply. The next few ends were evenly contested until Mark picked up 6 shots in 2 ends to go 1 shot up. Stuart replied with 3 shots to go back in front, but then Mark scored 5 shots in the last 2 ends to run out as winner. The final score was 21-18 and what a first class game of Bowls it was.

A big thank you to Thame Bowling Club for facilitating the semi-finals over the three days and providing excellent hospitality and catering throughout, it was enjoyed by all.
Also a big thanks are in order to Ian Whelpton and Mike Petersen for assisting with marking singles games and officiating across the three days.

The OBA Finals will take place on Sunday 23rd July at Chipping Norton Bowling Club.

Men’s county finals

The men’s county finals will be played at Chipping Norton on Sunday 23rd July starting at 10am. Schedule: Finals Programme

League week 10

What should have been the outstanding match of the season, anywhere in the league let alone Division 1, between the two outstanding club sides of the year, was marred by the car accident suffered by the doyen of Watlington Bowls Club the day before the match.

At the time of writing, I have little news of Bob Gilkes and his wife condition but wish them a speedy recovery.

Understandably, Watlington found it hard missing two of their usual skips, but held leaders Headington until the final few ends on three rinks, indeed, Howard Watts won his rink with the final bowl having been fifteen all at twenty ends and shot down as he stood on the mat. The resulting six point win leaves Headington fifteen points clear at the top of the league and, despite Watlington having a game in hand, unlikely to be caught before the end of the season.

City and County were cementing their place in the top three with a big win at South Oxford that, coincidentally, made their opponents favourites for relegation. Three comfortable rinks for the winners were sufficient to score more than David Tidball’s men could in defeating Alan Ley’s rink by ten shots.

West Witney hosted Banbury Central in a relegation battle that finished two rinks apiece. Indeed, the match was so close that Will Campion killed the final end of his match, despite holding shot, as he knew that he needed a five to win the match overall for his team. He lost the replayed end by two shots but that did not change the overall result.

Leaders Kidlington were not playing in Division 2 and their closest rivals, close neighbours Witney Town and Witney Mills, met in a promotion battle with the honours going to the home team. Comfortable wins for Tim Ludlow and Alan Scholan’s rinks meant that Paul Robbins’ big win for Mills was insufficient to take the match points.

Shiplake’s defeat of Chipping Norton means that the league is very close with seven points separating the top five teams. Big wins for Barry Lambourne, by twenty-three shots, and Jim Bland were enough for the home side despite Jeff Martin’s brave effort winning by sixteen shots only to lose a quarter of his total as he only had three men in his team!

Division 3 again saw a match where a single rink won well enough to snatch match points. Tom McKenna’s men won their match by twenty-two shots to give the match points to Banbury Central and rob Bicester of victory. This despite Alan Hall winning by ten shots for Bicester.

Surprise of the week was Blackbird Leys big defeat of long term leaders Charlbury. Leys have been playing well of late but five – one was still unexpected. In a match of big wins, or losses depending on your club, Jim Stevens took the prize with a thirteen shot win for Charlbury’s only point, whilst Roy Brain and Alex Fleming’s rinks both won by ten or more to give the match points to the home side.

Just to tighten up the division even more, Chadlington took the match points in their four-two defeat of Hanborough to leave seven points between second and seventh places with last place Headington having a match in hand over half those above them.

Division 4 leaders, Thame, maintained their form with a big win at West Oxford. Ken Calcutt’s rink led the way with a thirteen shot win, only Gary Richardson’s men were able to reply for the visitors.

City and County drew a very close match with promotion rivals South Oxford despite losing on three, very close, rinks. Geoff Powell skipped the only winning rink for the home side but did so by twelve shots which was enough to counter the visitors eight shots in total from their winning rinks.

Bloxham travelled to Oxford University Press and took the spoils thanks to Dave Morse’s rink winning by sixteen shots.

Thame still look secure at the top of the division but Bloxham are not out of the hunt as they still have to play the top two sides.

Printable Report
Match Results
League Table