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June 17th, 2013:

Balcomb Trophy: 2 x 4 regional semi final team selected

The Oxfordshire team to face Kent in the Balcomb Trophy regional semi-final on Sunday 23th June 2013 10.00am at Halls Bowls Club has been selected.

Please note the Middleton Cup and U25 teams will be announced by Tuesday lunch time.

Team Selected:

Jon Philpott
Paul Sharman
Mark Sykes
Howard Watts

Keith Holloway
Nathan Lewis
Ian Snowdon
Alan Prew

Team Sheet: Balcomb Trophy 230613

Vice president’s impressive run of wins

The Vice President’s team found the Brackley & District green to their liking last Sunday when they turned the Northamptonshire Vice Presidents over on all five rinks.

After ten ends across the rinks the Oxfordshire ‘lads’ were only up on one rink with two others all square and a scoreline of 42-39 in Oxfordshire’s favour.

The improving weather in the second half of the match saw the sun shine on the Oxfordshire rinks, who took 36 of the remaining 55 ends to add another success to their impressive first half of this season, ending the game 118-72 winners.

Rink scores:
Trevor Mold, Alex Fleming, Eddie Dorling, Melvin Brain 28-17.
John Dunne, Ron Havard, John Timms, Mike Andrew 20-14.
Barry Osborne, Bill Allin, David Allin, John O’Shea 25-16.
Charles Blackmore, John Franks, Alan Peters, Chris Cox 23-14.
Alan Rowe, Mike Enright, John McGeough, Ian Whelpton 22-11

U25’s miss out on a place at Worthing

Oxfordshire Under 25s did themselves and the county proud with a fantastic performance at the regional finals of the White Rose national double rink at Iver Heath BC on Sunday however eventually came up slightly short of a place at Worthing in the last four.

The team had qualified by virtue of beating Berkshire in the previous round and fielded a slightly changed team, with Lee Wilkinson replacing Chris Gilkes who was unavailable through work, for the semi-final against Sussex.

Looking to compensate for the last bowl loss in 2012 against their opponents the Oxon boys got off to a great start and were twelve shots up at five ends with some great play. It wasn’t all Oxon’s way throughout though as the Sussex players rallied to close to seven at both ten and fifteen ends.

Gary May, with brother Dean and the Wakeman brothers, Dan and Darren, slipped behind by a shot against Michael Stone at fifteen but soon restored the lead with a great draw from the Oxon skip to an offset jack when three down and went on to win by five at the end. George Schwab, Oxon’s other skip always led against Andrew Albon, and, with his rink of Sam Watts, Wilkinson and Shane Cooper, was always able to cover any increase in pressure from the Sussex team. He also finished up winning by five.

Surrey, featuring Oxford ‘old boy’ Sam Muir as reserve, beat Hampshire in their semi-final to set up the afternoon showdown with the Oxon youngsters, now a round further than they’d been before in recent times.

Featuring junior international stars, Dan Morris and Josh Grant along with four other Middleton Cup players Surrey were always going to be very strong opponents and so it proved in the initial ends when they opened up an eight shot lead.

Credit to Oxfordshire though, they dug in on both rinks and fought their way back into the end with great play from all. Gary May, time and again proved why he is now a regular Middleton player himself with some fantastic conversion shots, particularly for a three on another offset jack towards the end. Schwab skipped his rink with maturity and himself played some nigh on impossible shots to keep the side in the battle.

At one point around midway Oxon actually led by one shot and needed a couple more winning ends to open a gap, however Surrey, with their greater experience overall hit back with equally great play and denied a larger lead. In the end May beat Matt White by a single shot leaving Schwab needing nine from two ends to win the tie.

A three on the twentieth end followed by a killed end by Wilkinson set up the conclusion with six needed. Watts and Wilkinson set the head up with four bowls behind however Cooper and Schwab each narrowly failed to drag the jack leaving a two to Surrey and probably a deserved win on the day. Good luck to them at Worthing.

‘Gutted’ doesn’t adequately describe the feeling of the Oxon team afterwards however they still have three years together, with youngsters coming through, to achieve their aim of winning the White Rose and experience is being gained at each hurdle. Next up is Surrey again, this time in the JHCL on 23rd June at Weybridge.

Quarter Finals v Sussex: George Schwab 17, Andrew Albon 11; Gary May 27, Michael Stone 22. Semi Finals v Surrey: George Schwab 16, Dan Morris 24; Gary May 17, Matt White 16.

Full Report: White Rose RF Report 160613

Middleton Cup: Oxon take all points from IOW

Middleton Cup

It was a lot better day at the office for Oxfordshire’s Middleton Cup team at Oxford City & County BC on Saturday as they put in a solid performance to take all points against the Isle of Wight.

In what was a ‘must win’ game for Oxon the team got off to a great start, winning the first end across the board and going on to lead the whole way through to eventually secure a 142-98 shot victory.

The team was unchanged from the one that lost to Middlesex a fortnight ago other than, fit again, Barry Lambourne coming in for Jason King who was unavailable, and the players responded to the faith shown in them with wins on every rink.

Calvin Carpenter’s four were out of the blocks and away early, racing to a nineteen shot lead at nine ends before concluding with a win of eleven. The rink of AJ Docherty, George Schwab, Richard Redford and skipped by Mark Sykes were close at fifteen ends but, taking the final six ends the Oxon men opened up a thirteen shot margin by the end to finish biggest winners of the day.

Having been on the end of a big defeat in Middlesex, Ian Snowdon’s rink of Shaun Claridge with Dean and Gary May passed the test of character with flying colours this time round with a comfortable eleven shot win over Keith Beckett.

On rink six Mark Charlett got off to a great start and was 11-1 up at seven ends however a concerted effort from the Isle of Wight four, particularly number two Roy Smith, saw the gap close to just two at eighteen but winning two of the last three ends Charlett and his team mates made sure of the points with a five shot advantage.

There was never more than five shots in the game between Oxford captain, Alan Prew and IOW player/manager, Steve Crockett with a three on the last end for Prew making a four shot cushion for rink win five.

Last out was Paul Sharman whose team had worked hard throughout to open a six shot lead going into the penultimate end however a five then dropped made the last end a tense affair which wasn’t settled until Sharman, with the last bowl of the match, drew shot for a full house of rink wins and maximum points for Oxfordshire.

All in all a job well done and the team now looks ahead to next week’s encounter at Atherley, Southampton against Hampshire. Again, only a win will do!

Full Report: MC Report v BIOW 150613

Rink Scores (Oxon skips first)
Mark Sykes 28 – Alan Cawdell 15
Calvin Carpenter 31 – Adam Clark 20
Ian Snowdon 24 – Keith Beckett 15
Paul Sharman 20 – Bob Mortlock 18
Alan Prew 18 – Steve Crockett 15
Mark Charlett 21 – John Crews 16