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July 11th, 2017:

Carterton through to Leamington in men’s senior fours

Senior Fours WinnersThe inaugural senior fours semi-finals and final were played in yet another splendid summer’s day at Burford Bowling Club on Sunday. This competition is a new competition brought in by Bowls England which is suitable for any four gentlemen, of the same club, who are aged 55 and over. There weren’t a great deal of entrants this year but I am personally hoping word will spread and we will have more and more entrants in the next couple of years growing it to be one of the most sought after competitions.

Having said that, there were four very strong sides fielded from Carterton, South Oxford, Headington and Banbury Central and two excellent semi-finals developed through the morning.
The first semi-final saw a Carterton rink of Tim Jupp, Gordon Walker, Steve Aldren and skipped by Paul Sharman up against a South Oxford rink of Chris Billingham, Vick DePaauw, Richard Green and skipped by Keith Mobley. After a seriously strong start from the Toon rink put them 18 shots to nil up after just 6 ends, the fightback would always be required from the south oxford rink, and they did just that. The next 7 ends went 10-2 in South’s favour to take the score to 20-10 at 13 ends. South continued their dominance in the game, although behind, they won the next 7 ends to take it to a nail-biting climax with the score at 20-18 playing the last. A great last end from the Toon lads saw them pickup 2 shots to win the game 22-20, but it has to be noted of the valiant effort given from the South Oxford rink.

The second semi-final saw a Headington line up of Mick Nash, Russell Edwards, Colin Whitehead and skipped by Ray Gaskins playing against a Banbury Central rink comprised of Alan Carter, Mike Andrew, Keith McNeil and skipped by Ian Whelpton. This was a lot tighter affair than the other semi-final which saw only 7 shots scored in the first 6 ends, going 6-1 Headington’s way. The Banbury rink fought well middle game to take the lead going 13-11 up at 15 ends before a double from Headington took it all square at 15 shots each. 3 good ends by Central saw them 17-13 up with only 2 ends left. A single shot on the penultimate saw Headington requiring 3 shots for an extra end or 4 shots for a win. Great front end bowling from the Headington boys in the last end allowed a good head to be built strongly in their favour and after the last bowl was delivered Headington picked up a game winning 4 shots to take their in place in the final 18-17 victors.
A spot of lunch was enjoyed by players, officials and spectators before the final commenced in the afternoon.

Played on rink 1, both the Carterton Rink and the Headington rink started well with Toon going 9 shots to 6 in front in the first half of the game. The next six ends saw six single shot pick-ups taking the score to 13-8 in Toon’s favour. A big 3 shot count on the 18th end saw the Toon boys up 16-8 with three ends to play. Of the required 8 shots Headington needed they could only gain 4 shots which gave Carterton the victory 16 shots to 12 and a place at Leamington to represent Oxfordshire in the national finals.
The winners, Tim Jupp, Gordon Walker, Steve Aldren and Paul Sharman, were presented the trophy by Ian Whelpton, which looked excellent after some work was put in over the winter months to convert the Bradshaw Cup to now be used as the Senior Fours Trophy.

A massive thank you to the members at Burford Bowls Club for the excellent welcome and facilities that were provided throughout the day and the lunch was excellent.

My closing note would be to encourage all competitors over the age of 55 to build a rink, together with your club mates and enter the competition for next year as this is definitely going to develop into an excellent competition, with the chance to qualify for the national finals at Leamington Spa.

Men’s Singles Quarter Finals

South Oxford Bowling Club was the last stop on the quarter final tour this week, hosting the singles in once again, glorious summer sunshine.

The First game saw this week’s quarter final regulars, in 7 quarter finals between them. Stuart Richens of Carterton played against Darren Sharpe of Banbury Borough. A great spectacle on the show rink with fantastic bowls from both individuals. After Sharpe took an early 7-2 lead, Richens fought well to get the game back all square at 8 each. Then 9 shots with only a single shot reply gave Richens a 17-9 lead. What followed was 5 extremely good ends of bowls by Sharpe to take the game back in his favour, this time at 18-17 before Richens scored 4 shots in three ends to claim the first place in the semi-finals 21-18 victor.

The Second game of the evening was between Headington’s Ray Gaskins against West Witney’s Paul Skidmore. The score boards ramped up quickly early on, with 13 shots being scored in the first 6 ends, 9-4 in Gaskins’ favour. A good fight back from Skidmore to the level the game at 9-9 before Gaskins picked up 7 shots in three ends without reply to go 16-9 in front. Three good ends followed from Skidmore which took the score to 15-14 before Gaskins finished the game off picking up the 6 shots he needed in three ends. Second Semi-finalist place went to Gaskins, 21-14 overall result.
The third game saw Watlington’s Adie Twinn up against another Headington player, this time Nick Rae-Welsh the opponent. After a good start from both players little separated them as the score showed at 8 shots to 5 in Rae-Welsh’s direction. A 4 shot pickup on the following end saw Rae-Welsh go 12-5 in front. Close heads were built again by both players and saw the score reach 18-8 before a glimmer of hope came to Twinn when he bowled a cracking end to pick up 4 shots to take the score to 18-12. Rae-Welsh then pushed on to get himself over the line 21-12 victor after what was another excellent tussle.

The final game saw an all Banbury Borough affair, between Keith Holloway and Mark Sykes. Over on rink 6 the two of them bowled it both extremely well early on, with Sykes going 10 shots to 4 in front before a great fight back from Holloway saw him go 12-11 in front. The ends scores went either way almost evenly right up to 18 shots apiece. Keith picked up two good single shots which took him 20-18 in front before Sykes bowled two solid ends of bowls to pick up a single shot in the penultimate end and a 2 shot pick up on the last to pip his club mate to the post, winning 21-20.
The Semi Finals will be played at Thame on Sunday 16th July with the Headington lads, Ray Gaskins up against Nick Rae-Welsh and on Tuesday 18th July Carterton’s Stuart Richens will take on Banbury Borough’s Mark Sykes.

A huge thank you to the four markers for the evening who were professional and did a great job. They were Ian Whelpton (Banbury Central), Steve Tolhurst (Carterton), Andy McIntyre (West Witney) and David Leighfield (West Witney).

A big thank you also to South Oxford for once again providing a fantastic green and fabulous facilities that were well used and appreciated.

League week 9

A week of high scores and tight finishes that saw Headington cement their place at the top of Division 1 with another six-nil win and a century to boot, this time the losers were South Oxford. With Watlington not playing, the lead at the top is now nine points for Headington and looks insurmountable but the top two play each other next week! The biggest win of the match was the rink of Nick Rae-Welsh, winning by twenty-seven shots.

Closest match of the week in the division was at Banbury Central where the home team came from five – one down after eighteen ends to win four-two against last season’s champions, Carterton. Whilst Nigel Galletly’s rink came from four behind to tie at twenty ends only for Paul Sharman’s men to take four on the last end, Will Campion came from a similar position to take a nine shot win and the match points for his team.

Elsewhere, City and County maintained their run of good form with a five-one defeat of West Witney. Stars of the week were Alan Ley’s rink winning by twenty-nine shots.

Relegation is now between four clubs and should be decided by their remaining head-to-heads.

The two games in Division 2 saw leaders Kidlington lose to rivals Witney Town thus tightening the battle for promotion. Witney lost on two very close rinks, despite Richard Barnett’s men picking up an eight on one end for them in their match with Joe Woodward’s men! However, comfortable wins on the other two rinks saw them gain the match points and move to within one point of their opponents.

Chipping Norton had a comfortable win despite Tom Clarke’s rink winning by eighteen shots for the visitors, Adderbury. They now lie third with a game in hand over the teams above them.

The top of the table clash in Division 3 saw leaders Charlbury host second place Banbury Central and finish satisfied with their four points from a very tight game thanks to Eric Pitts’ men winning by the widest margin of the evening – nine shots!

Hanborough’s whitewash of Headington demonstrates how close the division is as it moves them from sixth place to second! Other than the leaders, any club can still be either relegated or promoted from this division! This match was close on all four rinks with the biggest margin, one of six shots, going to Colin Hayley’s men.

The other match in this division saw erstwhile last placed Bicester defeat Chadlington on all four rinks and score a century whilst doing so. Comfortable wins all over for Bicester with Kevin Taylor’s men the pick with a thirteen shot margin.

In an exceptionally close division any club, other than the current leaders, can still finish as champions or find themselves relegated! None playing Blackbird Leys now occupy last place but they are only four and a half points adrift of second place and have a match in hand over most of their rivals!

Thames’ defeat of Woodstock sees them move clear at the top of Division 4 as closest rivals City and County were losing to Bloxham.

Biggest win for Thame in their five-one win came from John Timms rink which won by nineteen shots. Whilst Bloxham had an equivalent win for Tony Gardner’s rink it was exceeded by Dave Morse’s rink which won by a twenty-three shot margin. Indeed, Bloxham ran in over one hundred shots for the first time this season.

The other match in the division saw South Oxford defeat West Oxford in a topsy-turvy match where John Guest’s fourteen shot win proved sufficient to give the home side the match points and move them into second place.

Printable report
Match results
League tables