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League week 9

The heatwave continues, the football is now, as I write, at its semi-final stage and Headington continue to lead Division 1 despite not playing for the second week! (This week’s match was postponed as they were unable to agree any other date with their regional top club opponents.

Behind them, Watlington’s season remains in its slump. This week Witney Mills defeated them on two rinks and tied a third, but the result does not tell the true story. Bob Gilkes rink led for most of his match and was four shots clear at fifteen ends only for Allan Wiggins rink to take eight shots over the final three ends and with it the game. Likewise, Paul Robbins snatched three shots in the final two ends to tie his game. With Les Days winning comfortably and Steve Gilkes doing equally well for Mills the match looked to be going Watlington. Step up Chris Weller, despite starting stepping up with the last two woods well down on most ends Chris either reduced Steve Gilkes score or won the end on most occasions, ‘he undoubtedly won the game for Mills’ to quote Watlington.

Elsewhere, Kidlington were losing to Banbury central on three of four rinks and look certain to return to division 2 next season. Their one bright spark came from Mike Peterson’s rink which led Nigel Galletly’s men until the sixteenth end, where they scored their second four in three ends. Undeterred, Mike inspired his rink to win the last two ends and tie the game.

Division 2 saw promotion chasers Witney Town and South Oxford strive to catch leaders, Carterton, who had a bye. Town came out best taking five points from their match at Chipping Norton. Three rinks were close at the halfway point but Town were able to move clear on all three to take the match, but the fourth rink was all Chippy, specifically John Benfield’s. Leading from end four, he allowed Alan Scholan’s men only three more ends, and those by single shots, to give Chippy an outside chance of the match points! Sadly, his other club teammates were unable to assist him!
Sadly, for Hanborough’s Chris Hayley, his sixteen shot winning margin was to little avail as South Oxford won by even bigger margins for both David Tidball and Keith Mobley. With Martin Oliver taking fourteen shots over the first four ends the match looked well balanced despite the big margins, Sadly, for Hanborough, Dick Claridge’s men took a six on the fifteenth to close Martin margin to seven shots and give South Oxford the match points.
The final match in the division saw Shiplake make the difficult journey to Charlbury and return home with a creditable win in a very tight match; indeed, only Martin East’s rink’s eight shot win stood between Shiplake and a big win! However, raw results never tell the real story and here, especially for Eric Pitts and Dave Cooper who looked to be taking their games for Charlbury. However, Jim Bland and David Webb’s men had other ideas! David rink trailed by three with two ends to play, took a single shot on end seventeen and put up a full length jack on the last end. Two good woods saw them up with just the skips to play, neither of who could change the game, so a draw was a fair result. Jim went one better; trailing by one his final wood trailed the jack to give Shiplake the end by two and the game.

Adderbury continue their domination of Division 3. This weeks ‘victims’ were Thame who were never allowed into the game on two rink and while Ken Calcutt’s men made a game of it until the halfway point they to succumbed in the second half. Only R0bin Jenner’s rink salved any pride for Thame, even that coming about through a four shot win on the final end.

Headington looked to be on the ropes at fifteen ends losing on three rinks and trailing by eighteen shots across the rinks. Russell Edward’s rink won the game and, whilst none of the other rinks were able to snatch a win from the jaws of defeat, they all closed the gap, outscoring City and County by twenty shots in total to snatch the match points.
Never a dull moment if you play for Banbury Central with Tom McKenna as your skip. Tom’s rinks have become the leagues own yoyo men having lost by 14, 41 and 23 shots whilst winning by 12, 14, 5 and now 18 shots! Blackbird Leys may have thought that they had this match won but Tom’s eighteen shots and Jim Pickering’s men coming from behind to snatch victory over the last two ends provided Central with the match points and a possible lifeline!

Surprise of the week was in Division 4 where Oxford University Press defeated high fliers Chadlington very comfortably for only their second win of the season. Strong finishes by David Barlow and Goff Giles, the latter to snatch victory on the last end, more than ably backed up Roger Cann’s rink, which went into a nineteen shot lead after six ends!

Bloxham continued to show what they are capable of with another win, this week away at Woodstock. Jim Lucas and Alan Miles’s rinks withstood late comebacks and Tony Gardner secured that match points with a comfortable win in a game where his rink never trailed.

Finally, Bicester and South Oxford fought out a humdinger. Tight throughout, Bicester trailed for most of a close match remining two shots adrift with one end to play with a single win and a tie looking probable for them. However, they outscored their opponents by the required three shots and Phil Sansome came up with the win on his rink to give Bicester the four points they needed to stay top of the division.

League report

Oxon beat Berks in Middleton Cup final group game

Oxfordshire played their final Middleton Cup group match At Suttons BC Reading on Saturday 8th July.

The mid-morning start time did not seen to suit Oxfordshire and they trailed by 13 shots after 5 ends and 27 after 10 ends. With Mark Charlett’s rink finding form, the gap was reduces to 7 by the 15th end. In front by the 18th. Three rinks were in front at the end and Oxfordshire won by 8 shots.

20 game badges were awarded to the Watlington pair of Sam Watts and Shane Cooper. Middleton Cup flashes were awarded to Ade Kemish and Alan Carter.

Oxfordshire 131 shots 16 points Berkshire 123 shots 6 points

Adrian Kemish Paul Comley David Leighfield Ian Snowdon won 20-18
Alan Carter Paul Mabbutt Kevin Alder Baden Sparkes Lost 21-22
Mick Nash Paul Robbins Ian Henwood Nick Rae-Welsh won 27-16
Bradley Squires Steve Aldren Nathan Lewis Paul Sharman lost 18-27
Steve Witcombe Will Campion Shane Cooper Jason King won 25-16
Sam Watts Chris Weller Paul Skidmore Mark Charlett lost 20-24

The final table for this year saw Kent pip Berkshire for the top spot Oxfordshire finished in third place.

Kent 64 points
Berkshire 63
Oxfordshire 48
Surrey 37
Sussex 8

OBA Singles Quarter Finals Report

The final quarter final of the week was the singles at Kidlington Bowls Club.

The first game was Headington’s Ray Gaskins against Witney Mills’ Paul Robbins. Gaskins got off to a commanding start with a 14 shot to nil start after just 7 ends. Robbins got on the board with a 2-shot count before Gaskins got up to 17-2 in the following 2 ends. Robbins fought back over the next 6 ends to take the board to 19-9. Gaskins scored the 2 shots he needed over the next three ends to win 21-10 and the first semi-finalist. Gaskins is the only holder left of the competition that he won last year.

The next game was between Headington’s Ian Henwood and Kelvin Woodward. Henwood got off to a good start, with the score board at 11-5 at 11 ends. The next 6 ends saw the board at 16-10 in Henwood’s favour. The game was very nip and tuck from then on and shot changed end on end. After 22 ends Henwood was 19-13 up before 3 good ends from Woodward saw the beginning of a fightback to which Henwood squashed, picking up the next 2 ends to see him over the line 21-16. Ian Henwood was the first to successfully qualify in all 4 of the big competitions. Well done Ian.

The next game saw another Headington player, this time Nick Rae-Welsh who was up against West Witney’s David Leighfield. Leighfield held a slim lead for 15 ends with the score board at 12-11. 3 shots for Rae-Welsh across the following 2 ends see him take the lead for the first time, 14-12. 3 good ends from Leighfield saw him regain the lead, 16-14. The 23rd end saw the game at a draw again at 17 shots apiece. Back to back 2-shot pickups from Leighfield see him progress to next week’s semi-final and joins Ian Henwood to progress in all four competitions. Well Done David.

The final quarter final of the week was Carterton’s Stuart Richens against Banbury Borough’s A J Docherty. Richens started well scoring 13 shots to Docherty’s 3 at 12 ends. 7 shots to Docherty against Richens’ 2 over the following 4 ends to see the scoreboard at 15-10. Richens scored a single shot on the 17th end before a great comeback over the following 4 ends see AJ take the lead for the first time at 19-16 at 21 ends. The following 2 ends saw a shot go to both players to take AJ 20-17 up. Richens then played solid bowls to pick up 3 shots over the 3 ends to take the score to 20 shots apiece and a one end shootout. The shot bowl changed with almost every bowl but it was Richens who held onto to shot and was the last player to book his place in the semi-finals next week.

Thanks must be given to Kidlington Bowls Club for providing excellent green and services all night long. Big thanks to Pam Willoughby, Veta Bennett and Maureen Cox for providing excellent catering all night and to Jim and Sue Feeley and Chris Cox for keeping the competitors and spectators watered from the bar.

A big thank you to the markers for the evening for providing their services, they were Banbury Central’s Ian Whelpton, West Witney’s Andy McIntyre, Witney Mills’ Chris Weller and Banbury Borough’s Mick Morris.

The Quarter final fun bus has finished its duties and is now on stand down, ready for next Sundays Semi Finals which will be hosted at Banbury Chestnuts. Details of times of games will be published on Monday Evening.

Ladies senior fours won by Banbury Borough team

The winners of the Senior Fours is the team from Banbury Borough: Margaret Morris, Janet Fountain, Erica Brown and Angela Ives. They will represent Oxfordshire at Leamington in the Nationals, beginning their challenge on Wednesday 22nd August.

Played at Banbury Chestnuts on a very hot afternoon Borough put on the pressure with a four on the first end and kept ahead leading by eight shots until the 18th end when they dropped a five with Central behind by 3 shots with three ends to play. But Borough rallied with a two and a four over the next two ends leaving Central conceding the match with 9 shots adrift and just one end to play.

A hard fought match in very hot conditions: Banbury Borough 25, Banbury Central 16.

Men’s senior fours semi finals and final

The senior fours semi-finals and final will be played this Sunday at Burford Bowls Club.

Semi-final games will commence at 09:30.

The four teams fighting for the Bradshaw cup are:

Paul Sharman (Carterton)
Ray Gaskins (Headington)
Howard Watts (Headington)
Calvin Carpenter (Banbury Borough)

Support is most welcome so please come and watch what I’m sure will be a spectacle in the beautiful sunshine.

OBA Fours Quarter Finals Report

The third quarter final of the week was the fours at South Oxford Bowls Club.

The first game of the evening was a Headington rink comprising of Alan Manger, Dennis Crook, Norman Rae and Russell Edwards against a Carterton rink of Peter Latter, Dan Wakeman, Dave Clanfield and Remy Clanfield. The first half of the game saw a close affair with the score at 11-8 in Toon’s favour at 10 ends. The next 7 ends saw the Toon rink ramp up the tempo to pick up 10 shots to Headington’s 1, leaving the score at 22-9 at 17 ends. Edwards’ men picked up a 2-shot count on the 18th end but this wasn’t enough to begin their comeback as Carterton picked the 19th end up, to win the game 24-11 and be the first four to book their spot at next week’s semi-finals at Banbury Chestnuts.

The second game of the evening saw another Headington rink, this time Simon Hastings, Steve Hainge, Paul Comley and Ian Snowdon against Banbury Central’s rink of Alan Carter, Les Campion, Keith McNeil and Will Campion. Again, the first half two thirds were very close, with the scored tied at 13 shots apiece at 14 ends. The 15th end saw what can only be described as a world class weighted bowl from Will Campion which gave them a 6-shot count. From all accounts Les Campion was the man to call the shot for his son to play and he did exactly as requested to. The next 4 ends went 3 shots to both teams leaving the score at 22-16 in Central’s favour. Snowdon’s rink played the last 2 ends well but were only able to pick up 5 shots rather than the 6 that would have forced an extra end. Central’s men progressed through to next week with Alan Carter reaching his first county semi-final, well done.

The third game of the evening saw another Headington rink of Bernie May, Mark Kirby, Shaun Claridge and Paul Mabbutt against West Witney’s Bradley Squires, Harvey Alder, David Leighfield and Kevin Alder. A good start from the Headington rink saw them take an early 8-1 lead at 5 ends. The Witney team then fought back well, including picking up a 5 shot count on the 10th to take the lead 11-10 at 10 ends. Mabbutt’s rink bounced back quickly with a 4-shot pickup on the 11th before 4 good ends from the Witney boys that saw them take a 21-14 lead. Mabbutt’s rink then picked up 8 shots to Witney’s 2 in the penultimate ends to take the score 24-23 in Headington’s favour playing the last end. A good head was built by Witney before good bowls from Shaun Claridge and Paul Mabbutt to cut it down to 1 and a measure for the Witney boys. The measure went in favour of Witney and seeing them through to the semi-final next week. It was also the first time for Bradley Squires and Harvey Alder to reach a county semi-final in the “big four” competitions. David Leighfield STILL remains in all four competitions.

The last game of the night was another Carterton rink, this was consisting of last year’s winners of the fours, Tim Jupp, Steve Aldren, Stuart Richens and Paul Sharman. They were up against the forth Headington side fielded of the evening, John Nicolls, Ian Henwood, Jason King and Mark Charlett. The first half was very nip and tuck with the scoreboard at 9 shots each at 12 ends. The next 5 ends saw Headington pick up 6 shots to 1 for Toon to take the score to 15-10 in Charlett’s favour. Carterton fought back hard in the following three ends to take them level at 15 apiece playing the last. Now this last end changed hands almost every single delivery and was full of emotion. Ian Henwood drew a front toucher, Stuart Richens then played a great bowl with his second delivery to get the shot by playing a controlled pace shot into the target. Jason King then played a good weighted bowl which punched his teammates bowl onto Richens bowl which promptly popped it out to give Headington the shot. Sharman’s first bowl was a first class draw just short of a front toucher, described by his teammates as a “Bobby Dazzler”. Charlett, with his first played weight into the head aiming for Sharman’s shot bowl and hit it out of the head sweetly, leaving him the shot and holding game with one bowl to each skip left. Sharman attempted to repeat his last delivery but narrowly missed out on his line. This see the Headington rink over the line 16-15 victors. Ian Henwood is also STILL in all four competitions.

A huge thanks to all those at South Oxford who provided a quality evening and a very good quality green to bowl on. The rolls afterwards were lush and went down very well by all.

Again, my thanks go to all the spectators who came out and enjoyed yet another evening of decent bowling in decent weather.

My last big thank you goes to West Witney’s Andy McIntyre for acting as official and umpire for the evening as the competition secretary was attempting to bowl.

The Quarter final fun bus is down for maintenance tonight but will be back in action again tomorrow at Kidlington Bowls Club for the singles Quarter finals. All support will be most welcome from the competitors.

Oxon men beat Warks in friendly

On Tuesday 3rd July Oxfordshire pkayed Warwickshire at Banbury Chestnuts. With most rinks competitive from the start, eyes turned to the President’s run for inspriration and with them leading
by 15 shots after 10 ends Oxfordshire went into the lead. At the end 5 rinks won and the only loser finished well to reduce their deficit to 2. Oxfordshire won by 18 shots.

Oxfordshire 124 shots, Warwickshire 106 shots.

Bill Jarvie Colin Haley Jim Lucas Ian Whelpton won 15-13
Norman Hambridge John Stephens John Hurren Ken Williams won 18-17
Mike Jones Eddie Dorling Keith Buckle Paul Robbins won 27-22
Steve Tolhurst John Timms Brian Ray Brian Bloomfield won 22-17
Roy Radband Alex Fleming David Wedge Alan Ley won 23-16
Paul Demczak Nigel Satchell John Benfield Mike Andrew lost 19-21

OBA Triples Quarter Finals Report

Well the sun shined once more for another evening of decent bowling at Carterton Bowls club last night.

The first game saw Kidlington’s Alan Rowe, Steve Gibson and Mike Petersen against West Witney’s Andy McIntyre, David Leighfield and Kevin Alder. A good standard of bowls was played throughout and the game never had more than 5 shots in it. After 10 ends it was 10-5 in Witney’s favour before 2 good ends from Petersen’s men, including picking up a 5 shot count, see them take the lead for the first time in the game, 11-10. Going into the last end Kidlington required 2 shots to force an extra end which of course they did. Extra end number 3 of the week commenced. Kidlington were holding when the skips went to bowl before Petersen moved the jack which unfortunately for him went to Witney’s bowls behind the jack. Petersen could not redeem the shot and Alder’s men progressed through t next Sunday’s semi-final 16-15 victors. David Leighfield still remains in all four competitions.

The next game saw a Headington triple consisting of Jon Philpott, Nathan Lewis and Howard Watts against Carterton’s Joe Justin, Bob Turley and Paul Justin. The game was close all the way through which didn’t see any more than a 3 shot pick up scored right the way through to the 12th end, where Headington picked up a 4 to take the lead for the first time in the game, 12-11. 3 singles followed before Justin’s men replied with 3 shots in the penultimate ends, going into the last end 15-14 down. When the skips went to bowl, Headington were holding but Paul Justin replaced their shot bowl with his last to be lying 2 shots. Watts, with his last bowl had a big decision to make, draw the shot or drive at the head, he chose to draw the shot and with almost inch perfection, drew shot to give the Headington triple the win, 16-14. Im sure Howard is more than pleased with both his shot selection and conviction to win the game for him and his comrades.

The next game was another Carterton triple, this time Orren Bennett, Tim Warner and Gordon Walker and they were up against Andrew Auger, Colin Oliver and Chris Weller from Witney Mills. Weller’s men got off to a great sprint start, going 14-0 up after just 6 ends. This kicked the Toon boys into life and they bounced back with a fantastic comeback, winning the next 8 ends without reply, scoring 22 shots. Gordon Walker was bowling every single one of the shots being called by his teammates flawlessly and was a fantastic spectacle to watch. Weller’s triple got a single on the 16th to give them a glimmer of hope but this was squashed by Walker’s men picking up 1 on the 17th end which meant the Mills needed an 8 to force an extra end. They could only manage 2 shots so the Carterton men progressed as 23-17 winners.

The final game of the evening saw an all Headington affair between Colin Whitehead, Ray Gaskins and Nick Rae-Welsh against Ian Henwood, Jason King and Mark Charlett. Rae-Welsh’s team started well, going 8 shots to nil up after 6 ends before Charlett’s men had 4 ends reply scoring 6 shots. The following 3 ends saw Rae-Welsh’s triple pick up 6 shots to take the score to 14-6 at 13 ends in their favour. Charlett’s triple then began the comeback and of which won the next 4 ends scoring 11 shots with no reply, leaving the score board 17-14 at 17 ends in Charlett’s favour. The last end saw a tense battle of which Rae-Welsh’s men were holding when the skips went to bowl. Charlett managed to draw shot just behind the jack and Rae-welsh could not better the head for his team to score the 3 that they needed. Charlett’s triple were the last to book their place at next Sunday’s semi-final winning 18-14. Ian Henwood still remains in all four competitions.

Let us see if Ian and Dave can both do the business for the rest of the week and qualify to the semi-finals in all four competitions.

A massive thank you to everyone at Carterton who helped run such a successful evening, credit going especially to Gill and Duncan Muir for keeping the competitors and spectators fed with a beautiful burger and chip supper and to Wendy Sandy for running the bar for the evening.

Another big thank you to all of those who made the journey to come and watch the bowls, particularly as the football was on, which thankfully went in our favour, for once!!

The Quarter final fun bus travels back into Oxford tonight for yet another splendid evening of weather booked for us by the river at South Oxford Bowls Club.

Oxon ladies beat Bucks in friendly

A very hot Monday afternoon in a quiet, charming setting with lovely gardens at Woburn Sands BC opened just four years ago.

A win for BOL with 128 shots against Buckinghamshire’s 92.

Carol Penson 16, L Throup 21
Jeanette Berry 19, C Clark 16
Carole Thornhill 19, L Hewins 20
Wendy Cross 21, T Keen 13
Caroline Bloomfield 25, I Skerry 14
Daphne Jacob 28, B Brown 8

OBA Pairs Quarter Finals Report

Well what an evening of high quality bowls in the blissful sunshine as the quarter final fun bus made its first stop to Headington Bowls Club last night.

The first game saw Headington’s Bernie May and Ian Snowdon take on West Witney’s Andy McIntyre and David Leighfield. After a shaky start from the Witney boys going 5-2 down at 4 ends they then battled incredibly well and won the following 8 ends to turn the lead in their favour, 16-5. Snowdon’s comeback was short lived as he could pick up 2 shots on the 13th end before Leighfield scored 11 shots in the following 3 ends to book themselves a place at Banbury Chestnuts next week. David Leighfield is one of two competitors still left in all the big four competitions.

The next game saw an all Headington battle between Jon Philpott and Howard Watts against Paul Comley and Gary May. This was a high scoring but close game all the way through. After 7 ends it was 10 shots apiece and at 14 ends 17 shots each. The 19th end saw the game tie again at 20 shots each after May managed to pick up shot. A single from Watts on the penultimate end saw them 21-20 in front playing the last. The final end saw Philpott and Comley battling hard for the shot which went in Philpott’s favour. Watts played good covering bowls to tidy up and protect the shot they held. With May’s last bowl he played a runner to try and get a reaction with the shot bowl but narrowly missed the target by fractions. Philpott and Watts were the second pair to progress, 22-20 victors.

The other all Headington affair was between John Nicolls and Jason King against Colin Whitehead and Nathan Lewis. King’s pair kept the lead they had built all the way through the game up to the 16th end when the score went 14-13 in Lewis’ favour. On the last end Lewis’ pair were holding game with 2 shots before King drew second bowl with his last. Extra End number 1 of the week, the shot chopped and changed with a large variety of shots being played to try and tactically win the end. King was holding with his penultimate bowl which was quickly moved by Lewis onto the jack which behind was his team mate’s happy collector, King then fired and missed the one bowl target by margins. Colin and Nathan also progressed to the Semi-finals.

The final game of the evening was that of West Witney’s Joe Woodward and Kevin Alder up against Headington’s Ian Henwood and Mark Charlett. Early on, the game didn’t seem to be able to decide a leader, with the score tied 11 each at 11 ends. Charlett won 4 of the following 6 ends to take a 17-14 lead before Alder picked up 6 shots over the next 3 ends to go 20-17 up at 20 ends. 3 was required from Charlett’s pair to force and extra end and they did just that. Extra end number 2 of the evening saw West Witney holding game with Woodward’s back toucher, Charlett’s last bowl was a drive that successfully killed the end, therefore extra end number 3, this started at 21:55!! After the leads had bowled the Witney pair were holding and Alder added another before Charlett played a successful running bowl to remove these both from the head. Alder added again before Charlett played another weighted bowl, this time hitting his teammates bowl into the head for shot. Alder with his last had a chance to draw it but narrowly missed out on his line. Henwood and Charlett were the last pair to book their place at next Sunday’s semi-finals. Ian Henwood is the second competitor to be left in all 4 of the competitions.

Thank you to Headington Bowls Club for hosting such a wonderful evening and cooking some fantastic hot dogs and bacon rolls. A big thank you also to all the spectators that came and watched and I sincerely hope we can grow on the amount of supporter numbers during the week, especially as the weather is so wonderful!

The next stop for the quarter final bus is over to Carterton for the triples and yes the England Game will be on!

Wednesday the bus heads back into oxford to the fours quarter finals which will be hosted at South Oxford. The bus is on stand down Thursday so men’s league can continue before the last quarter final on Friday is the singles which shall be hosted at Kidlington.”