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May, 2017:

Oxon ladies lose to Herts in friendly

Bowls Oxfordshire Ladies lost to Hertforshire in a friendy played on the 30th May. After being 7 shots up at 15 ends and all square at 18 ends, Oxon ladies lost the match by 12 shots.

BOL 110, Herts 122

Marion Darton 20, K Havord 20
Wendy Cross 20, J Cosmock 14
Daphne Jacob 18, M Dunston 15
Shirley Crick 9, M Hendry 29
Jeanette Berry 20, S Moodey 20
Carol Penson 23, A Hall 24

U25’s face Berks in JHCL

Oxfordshire U25’s will face Berkshire on Sunday 4th June 10:30am in the Junior Home Counties League at Kidlington Bowls Club.

Team has been selected: JHCL v Berks

League Week 3

In a game that may be significant at the end of the season, Headington’s meeting with Watlington last Thursday turned on Jason King’s rink’s defeat of Steve Gilkes’ men. Whilst the rest of the Gilkes family, Bob and Chris, led their rinks to victory, Steve’s men lost by twenty-eight shots giving Headington overall victory and cementing their place at the top of Division 1.

Elsewhere, West Witney were defeating a depleted Banbury Central team missing five of their A squad. Good wins for Kevin Alder and Paul Skidmore’s rinks, only Lee Young able to reply for Central.

City and County got the better of a close match against South Oxford thanks a big win for Paul Comley’s men. The result leaves the losers at the foot of the table.

In Division 2, Tim Ludlow’s rink won the Witney clash for his Town team. Their twelve shot winning margin was not only Town’s single win but also sufficient to swing the match to his side by ten shots as the other rinks were separate by no more than a single shot.

Chipping Norton were having a more comfortable time at home to a Shiplake side making their longest trip of the season. Whilst Barrie Evan’s rink were able to provide some solace for the visitors, Jeff Martin and Keith Field ‘s were winning with ease for the home side.

The closest margin of the week was at Bicester in Division 3, where the visitors, Banbury Central, managed to win on three closely fought rinks but lost the match to Kevin Taylor’s rink who won the final rink by fifteen shots to snatch the match points by a single shot, and tie the result.

The other fixtures were a little more one sided, Hanborough defeating Chadlington, thanks to Martin Oliver’s twenty-two shot margin, and Charlbury running up the only hundred plus score of the week in their defeat of Blackbird Leys. Eric Pitts and Malcom East’s rinks both scoring over thirty shots in this match.

Division 4 saw the most one-sided match of the week with Bloxham’s defeat of Oxford University Press. Jim Lucas leading the way for the victors with a twenty-three shot winning margin.

Elsewhere, City and County defeated South Oxford comfortably whilst Thame eventually won at home to West Oxford. Two rinks apiece in the latter match with Paul Heafey’s rink swinging the result to the home team with their eighteen-shot margin.

Match results
League Tables
Printable report

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

Oxon lose to Hants in Balcomb Trophy by 1 shot

Oxfordshire welcomed Hampshire to Oxford City and County on Sunday 28th May for a preliminary round of the 2 rink fours. The 4 from Banbury Borough led by Mark Sykes got off to a slow start and were 12-0 down after 6 ends. Picking up a 5on the 8th end helped their cause and by end 10 the deficit was reduced to 6.

Meanwhile the four skipped by Ryan Buckett moved into a comfortable lead and were 7 up after 10 ends.

Steady progress by both fours enabled Oxfordshire to retain a narrow lead of 3 shots after 18 ends.

With Ryan and co about to play the last end of the match Oxfordshire required two shots to force an extra end and after 15 woods Oxfordshire held 2. However a successful strike by the Hampshire skip reduced it to 1, and Hampshire had won by a single shot.

Oxfordshire 40 Hampshire 41.

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

HCL loss for Oxon Men against Berks

Oxfordshire played Berkshire at Three Mile Cross on 27th May in the first match of the 2017 Home Counties League campaign. With a fairly even start across the green Berkshire lead by 4 shots overall after 10 end. The gap widened in the second half as the pressure on Oxfordshire was appled and by the end Berkshire had won by 43 shots.

Paul Comley’s rink were level after 13 ends but won only one more end to lose by 9. Next door Melvin Brain’s rink were level after 10 ends but a dropped 6 on the seventeenth end contributed to a 14 shot deficit.

Chris Weller with newcomer Paul Robbins at 3 were in contention throughout and level after 19 ends. A 5 on end 20 and a double on the last end saw Oxfordshire home by 7 shots.

The under 25 rink skipped by Shane Cooper showed their seniors on the other rinks just how steady their game is and were level going into the last end and their final wood of the last end failed by inches to make shot and they lost by 1.

Alan leys four got off to a strong start and were ahead by 5 after 13 ends . The next 7 ends saw Berkshire pick up 15 shots and left Alan and co with too much to do on the final end and they went down by 8.

Kevin Alder was always second favourite against England international Andrew Knapper but all four Oxfordshire bowlers held their nerves and won 7 ends to lose by 14.

Oxfordshire 89 and 2 points Berkshire 132 and 20 points.

Oxon men beat Beds in friendly

Oxfordshire were on the road for the first on the away friendlies on Tuesday 23rd May, travelling to Lanslade BC to play Bedfordshire. Confortable wins for the rinks of Alan Ley and Chris Weller with support from those of Brain Bloomfield and Mike Andrew saw Oxfordshire home to an emphatic win.

Oxfordshire 124 Bedfordshire 89.

Martin Oliver Colin Haley Alan Wase Brain Bloomfield won21-14.
Steve Tolhurst Roy Radband Ken Williams Melvin Brain lost 14-20
Paul Demczak Bill Jarvie Jim Lucas Alan Ley won 31-10
Tony Backer-Holst John Timms Allan Hall Ian Whelpton lost 14-17
Andrew French Douglas Wright Mick Morris Mike Andrew won 17-14
Chris Lewis Brian Ealey David Bullock Chris Weeler won 27-14

Oxon ladies beat Wilts in friendly

Bowls Oxfordshire ladies faced Wiltshire in a friendly at Highworth Bowls Club. After being 10 shots down at 18 ends, Oxon ladies rallied to win by 7 shots.

BOL 113, Wiltshire 106

Daphne Jacob 13, M Annetts 26
Jeanette Berry 18, D Goodwin 15
Carol Penson 15, B Salter 20
Marion Darton 28, M Woodley 15
Shirley Crick 14, F Mace 22
Carol Gaskins 25, E Oliver 8

Orren Bennett and David Leighfield win OBA under 25 pairs competition

This years under 25 pairs was played with great success in the sunshine at South Oxford Bowls Club. This year sees the first time the boys able to progress to Leamington due to a Bowls England introduction of a male junior pairs competition.

The pairing of Orren Bennett and David Leighfield had to play three games of 18 ends to qualify, as only the winners overall progress to the national finals at Leamington Spa in August this year.
The pairing’s first game was against Woodstock duo Ollie John and Ben Dickson, the game was fairly evenly matched for the first half but a six on the 11th end made it very difficult for the Woodstock boys to comeback and they ended up losing 24-9 to Bennett and Leighfield.
The other three first round games were all taken to extra ends, after fantastic bowling by all players involved. A special mention is noted to Joe Justin and Darren Wakeman, from Carterton Bowls Club, who were 17-1 down after 8 ends, who went into the last end 20-17 up! A 3 from the pairing of Bradley Squires and Harvey Alder on the final end forced an extra end which ended up with the Carterton lads progressing to the semi-final winning 21-20.

Watlington’s Rob Parkes and Banbury Borough’s Jamie Wilkinson were in a tight tussle on rink 1 early on, against Thame’s Johnathon Dadson and Oxford City & County’s Joe Glenn, again a 3 shot pick up by Parkes and Wilkinson on the last end forcing an extra end. Dadson and Glenn won the extra end progressing to the semi-finals 15-14 victors.
The final first round game saw an all Watlington affair with the pairings of Sam Watts and Shane Cooper against Brandon King and Dan Swanson. Once more a 3 pick up on the final end forcing an extra end from King and Swanson. With one bowl left for Cooper and neither side quite sure who had shot, he played a very successful running bowl to remove both of his opponents bowls leaving his partners bowl for shot. Watts and Cooper progressed to the semi-final 21-20.

After a fantastic buffet lunch provided to the competitors and spectators from South Oxford Bowls Club, the semi-finals commenced with Dadson and Glenn against Bennett and Leighfield and Justin and Wakeman against Watts and Cooper. Watts and Cooper both played very strong games which got them a 26-5 victory and a place in the final. The other semi-final saw Bennett and Leighfield fight back from 15-4 down at 8 ends to win 25-20.

The final commenced in the glorious sunshine and both pairs keen to book their place at Leamington. There was a lot of emotion and big bowls played which saw the lead changing from pair to pair, but a 4 shot pick up on the 16th end for Bennett and Leighfield gave them a 16-12 lead with 2 ends to play. The penultimate end saw the Watlington pairing picking up a 2 which meant a very tense final end for the competitors, which saw Bennett and Leighfield pick up a single shot and win 17-14.
A very special thank you to Angie and Beryl from South Oxford for the excellent hospitality that was provided throughout the day and thank you to South Oxford Bowls Club for letting us use their facilities to host the event.

Watching the junior pairs played with so much talent and ability from all of the lads that were involved, shows just how bright the future is for bowls in Oxfordshire, for both the junior and senior game.

The Junior Pairs national finals will be held at Leamington Spa on Wednesday 9th and Thursday 10th August.