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June 13th, 2016:

Oxon narrowly defeated by 7 in Middleton Cup

Oxfordshire’s second match of the campaign against a strong Berkshire side at Sutton’s Bowling Club in Reading ended with a narrow defeat by 7 shots (Oxfordshire 123 shots against Berkshire’s 130). The points were 7 to Oxfordshire and 15 to Berkshire.

After 15 ends Oxfordshire were 24 shots adrift, losing on 4 rinks, drawing on 1 and leading by a single shot on the 6th, Showing great team spirit Oxfordshire battled back in the last 6 ends to win on 3 rinks and draw on 1 rink. A further rink lost by just 1 shot on the 21st end after being level on the 20th end. However defeat by 15 shots on the last rink resulted in a match defeat by 7 shots.

After being 1 – 8 down after 5 ends the rink of Paul Sharman fought back to win by 6. Ray Gaskins rink picked up a 4 on the last end to edge the match by 2 shots.

Behind for the entire match Wil Parkers rink had a great comeback to win by 1 shot on the last end. With 2 ends to go they were 5 shots down but a great conversion shot by Wil on the 20th end resulted in them going into the last end all square. They then picked up 1 shot to secure Wil Parker’s 1st victory in Oxfordshire’s colours.

The rink of Ian Snowdon was close all afternoon with never more than 4 shots between the 2 teams. A single shot down going into the last end Ian managed to pick up 1 shot to secure a well deserved point.

The rink of Mark Sykes was not so fortunate. Level going into the last end Mark was unable to secure victory losing by 1 shot.

Mark Charlett’s rink was up against it from the start and although they fought back into the contest losing 5 on the last end resulted in a 15 shot defeat.

Rink Scores:

I Kibble-White K Alder N Rae-Welsh W Parker 22 B J Sykes C Hill N Jones R Newman 21
P Lopez C Gilkes A J Docherty I Snowdon 22 A Piper D Oakes A Collins L Sabatini 22
H Beall T Prew I Henwood R Gaskins 24 A Merry G Ballantyne S Jones A Knapper 22
J Abercrombie P Mabbutt G Schwab M Sykes 22 A Synondson G Knapper N Gauld M Hancock 23
M Nash K Holloway S Cooper M Charlett 12 T Moore D Holder R Buckett G Stacey 27
S Watts M Brain B Lambourne P Sharman 21 J Heapy M Cooper T Broad I Stradling 15

Oxon men beat Leics in friendly

On Wednesday 8 th June Oxfordshire hosted Leicestershire at Bicester BC.

Winning well on 3 rinks. Oxfordshire commanded the match throughout with the only doubt being the destination of the highest winning rink awards. Reversing the trend in so many Oxon games Mike |Petersen’s rink picked up 8 shots on the final 2 ends to win by 20 shots, thus pipping Alan Ley’s rink, who had finished earlier winning by 17 shots. Bob Gilkes’ rink also finished well to pi their opponents on the last end.

Oxfordshire 136 Leicestershire 101.

Rink scores:

B Bloomfield T backer-Holst M Morris M Andrew lost 18-25
S Tolhurst A Fleming L days A Leys won 30-13
P Demczak B Ealey M Brain P Latter won 23-13
A Carter M Jones A Hall M Petersen won 33-13
P Lopez J Timms J McGeough I Whelpton lost 13-19
J Woodward P Strange J O’Shea B Gilkes won 19-18

New Under 25 Champion on the way

Chipping Norton’s David Leighfield and Watlington’s Chris Gilkes are through to this years Under 25 Singles final after yesterday’s Championship played on the Witney Town green.
Gilkes was runner up in 2009 in his first year in the competition and hopes to go one better this year which is his last year of qualification. His final opponent Leighfield, came on the scene last year at Chipping Norton having moved into the County from Wiltshire and both of them are in this years new look Middleton Cup squad.
Fine drizzle welcomed the early round contestants to the Witney Town green, but more welcoming was the Bacon sandwich and tea or coffee breakfast served up by the clubs “chef du cuisine”, Brain Bloomfield.

There were comfortable first round wins for Watlington’s Shane Cooper against City & County’s Joe Glenn and Chipping Norton’s David Leighfield against Thame’s young contestant Thomas Tisbury.
Current Champion Sam Watts, going for his third title in a row had a tighter game, winning only nine of the 21 ends played against West Witney’s Harvey Alder, but managing to pick up higher counts when he did score, to win 21-13
Leighfield hit the ground running in his quarter final against West Witney’s Bradley Squires picking up four 3’s in the first seven ends for a 15-1 lead, but a rally by Squires led to another 14 ends being played before the “Chippy” man moved into the semi’s with a 21-14 win.
Gilkes entered the competition at the quarter final stage with a game against fellow club mate Shane Cooper who quickly took control and did not go behind until the 19th end when Gilkes finally moved into an 18-17 lead and finished the game off with a two and a single for a 21-17 victory.

The semi-finals brought Leighfield up against current holder Watts and Gilkes against Carterton’s Orren Bennett who had come back from 7-15 down in his quarter final against Woodstock’s Ben Dickson to win 21-17.
After 13 ends of their 23 end match, Leighfield led 7 end to 6 and 8 shots to 7, then he gradually moved away taking eight of the next ten tightly contested ends with the heads constantly changing with some excellent draw bowling, to take his final place with a 21-11 scoreline.
In the second semi, Bennett looked the early favourite, being 6-1 up after five ends, 12-7 at 13 ends. Gilkes drew level 12-12 three ends later only to see the Carterton man go within four shots victory three ends later. Perhaps it was the realisation that this was his last opportunity of taking the title, but the Watlington bowler upped his game, taking the next five ends to move into a 20-17 lead and finally a final place two ends later, 21-18.
What had started out as a damp, dull day, ended in hot sunshine, with an audience of early round losers who had stayed throughout the day to support their fellow under 25 team mates, and family supporters, having been entertained by some very high quality competitive singles bowling.