Surrey v Oxfordshire 27.6.17 @ Bicester BC 126-106
Rink 1: Peter Duncan, Steve Sanderson, Peter Rapley, Dave Sowdon 27-10
Rink 2: Colin Popple, Bill Hudson, Howard Quinnell, Mick Gray 10-28
Rink 3: Mike Glithero, Roger Lanham, Norman Mann, Peter Marshall 27-14
Rink 4: Dave Hussey, Jim Roberts, John Warren, Bill Ayling 18-20
Rink 5: John Wilkinss, Eddie Adamson, Geoff Taylor, Robert Campbell 15-18
Rink 6: Alistair Cochrane, Vic Hemmett, Bob Daintree, Joe Cable 29-16
The outlook for our visit to Bicester did not look good with sultry skies and the threat of rain, but it was good to have the President with us today. This was a match of huge differences with the early ends in the opponents favour. Gray's four on Rink 2 took the brunt of the attack with some excellent and at times lucky bowls from the Oxford skip. They did however stick to it and added ten shots to the overall victory margin. Rink 1 as it's neighbour took some early flack but Sowdon and his team settled to finding the oddities of the rink and piled pressure on to their opposition to come out top rink. They were chased by Rinks 3 and 6 with the former skipped by SVP Marshall taking similar action as the rest of the team in starting slowly but improving as the game went on. Cable on Rink 6 had the bonus of Cochrane at lead having a super game, setting the rest of the rink up for good bowls from them all. There was some rain during this latter part of the afternoon allowing Hemmett to wear his newly purchased waterproof jacket. Rink 4 had a tussle and Ayling's men did well to keep within close order and had chances to at least make a draw. The quiet rink was Rink 5 which again had a tight tussle with their opposition, but as with rink 4 they stuck with their opponents. This was, in one way, a strange match with both non-playing Presidents pacing the green like football managers urging on their teams. The day closed with continuous rain, but a victory in the bag!
Middleton Cup v Oxfordshire 24.6.1@ Croydon BC 125-100 (18-4)
Rink 1: Harry Cushen, Paul Bennett, Paul Vamvacopoulos, Simon Clarke 10-20
Rink 2: Myles Clements, Joe Cable, Eamon O'Flynn, Gary Clark 23-11
Rink 3: Jon Winter, Jeff O'Leary, Matt White, Dennis Hennessy 13-23
Rink 4: Alex Neal, Steve Shanley, Finlay Morton, Charlie Souter 32-15
Rink 5: Mark Porter, Richard Cushen, John Graham, Nathan Beeson 23-15
Rink 6: Terry Friday, Will Matthews, Simon Fishlock, Mick Sigamoney 24-16
I am back with an apology to all readers. My absence was due to a family situation which required my attendance. I realise that many of you look forward to reading the analysis of the matches the County plays and believe me I was disappointed not to be able to keep you up to date. That said - we are back in the groove.
Recent results from all matches in the competition gave Surrey the opportunity to be up there with a chance if a good win could be achieved here. This was a match, not perhaps for the connoisseur, but for those spectators pushing their team for a result. Four Rinks to two was a good return. Rink 4 with the now restored to health Souter skipping led the charge, with all four involved with good woods throughout. It was a delight to see Souter drawing rather than trying to blast everything off the green. Rink 2 with the reliable Clark skipping saw Clements have a good game at lead. He was presented with his MC flash before the match, perhaps that inspired him. O'Flynn also stood out and together with Clark they made an excellent back end. Beeson's Rink 5 were excellent, if there was a prize for winning Porter could buy a razor! Seriously though they all played well and Graham being in top form they were never troubled. What does one write about Rink 6? These four bowlers epitomise what Manager Candeland stresses, play as a team. To single out a single player is almost impossible for they all contributed to the result. Matthews has improved with each match and was presented with his MC flash before the match. Both Rink 1 and Rink 3 lost by 10 shots. Clarke on the former had a real tough job with the opposition skip playing superb bowls, backed up by the other three members of his rink. Hennessey on Rink 3 got away to a poor start, but his rink was able to produce some successes. The important thing here was neither rink gave up and attempted to keep the gap at a reasonable level. Team work was the winner here with plenty of noise from both players and spectators, roll on the 8th July when Surrey play the old enemy ..Kent.
President v Croydon MO BC 22.6.17 110th Anniversary 134-52
Surrey v Berkshire 21.6.17 @ Sutton BC 90-98
Past Presidents v Kent PP 19.6.17 @ Sevenoaks BC 102-102
Middleton Cup v Sussex 17.6.17 @ Popes Mead BC 121-119 (16-6)
Surrey v Kent 15.6.17 @ CMO BC 124-113
Eddie Vine was presented with his County Badge by the Senior Vice President.
Surrey v Herts @ Potten End BC 14.6.17 101-123
Past Presidents v Norfolk PP @ CMO 13.6.17 76-74
Surrey v Norfolk 13.6.17 @ Purley BC 117-113
Rink 1: Peter Gay, Steve Sanderson, Graham Dawber, Bill Ayling 14-23
Rink 2: Terr Buckland, Alan Weeks, John Warren, Peter Miller 17-12
Rink 3: Doug Long, Geoff Farnish, Martin Harbottle, Les Owen 24-20
Rink 4: Peter Phillips, Robin Taylor, Alan Bennet, Joe Cable 21-22
Rink 5: Roger Rashleigh, Roger Lanham, Brian Rogers, Peter Marshall 14-22
Rink 6: Gavin Pocock, Peter Lines, Derek Harvey, Trevor Pocock 27-14
Oh! the delights of summer. A day when bowls, whether playing or watching was the sensible thing to do. Purley is the home green of the President and the club certainly prepared a surface to his satisfaction. Drawn on Rink 6 they were rarely troubled and came home, unusually for the President as top rink. Lines who was playing his fiirst match for the County can feel satisfied with his days work. Rink 1 struggled and although they pulled a few shots back were never able to make an impact against their rivals. Rink 5 skipped by JVP Marshall and including in it's number SVP Lanham was another that were never in touch, but scored an extra shot to miss out on the losers compasses. Miller's Rink 2 were the nearest to Rink 6 in scoring and with the formidable Buckland at lead were always able to be in with a chance. Owen's rink on Rink 3 following on from his win at Epsom and supported by Harbottle at 3 had a real tussle but overcame their opposition in the end. I cannot understand Cable, here today on Rink 4 his team had the tie in the bag only to drop a four on the last end to go down by one shot. The day was to some extent spoiled for the President, when G Pocock arrived having had a haircut, thereby denying the President of the use of the pudding basin and scissors he had brought with him to personally give Pocock a haircut. The day however closed on a happier note when the President presented Lines with his County badge.
Balcombe Trophy v Kent 11.6.17 @ Sandwich BC 46-33
Rink 1: Terry Friday, Paul Bennett, Gary Clark, Simon Clarke 24-18
Rink 2: Mark Porter, John Graham, Nathan Beeson, Dennis Hennessy 22-15
Following yesterday's result in the Middleton and with a long trip to Sandwich to play the old foe Kent, I cannot say that I was looking forward to writing about two defeats in a row. Well, as you can see from the details above, not only is my report about a second win against Kent in one season, but of a game that had many marvellous points to write about. Both rinks started well with superb bowling from both Porter and Friday on their resppective rinks. Hennessy's Rink were up 7-5 after 5 ends and Clarke 7-3. It was a close match during the next 5 ends with scores of 11-10 and 12-10. The game was virtually secured over the next 5 ends with Hennessy taking 9 shots to 0 to lead 19-10 and Clarke taking 11 to lead 23-12. It is true that Kent took the honours over the remaing ends but such was the exceptional bowling of all Surrey players that high counts were never an issue. Kent called a halt on Clarke's rink after 19 ends. I have mentioned Porter and Friday but to be honest every player out there today played as part of the team putting bowls into the head regularly. This performance must act as a boost to Manager Candeland and send a message to the MC team that things can be turned to advantage. Well done to all today including the members of the Executive who travelled down to support the team.
Middleton Cup v Berkshire 10.6.17 @ Suttons BC 107-113 (2-20)
Rink 1: James Shillingford, Paul Bennett, Paul Vamvacopoulos, Simon Clarke 15-18
Rink 2: Mark Porter, Richard Cushen, John Graham, Nathan Beeson 27-15
Rink 3: Alex Neil, Don Leach, Steve Shanley, Finlay Morton 18-21
Rink 4: Sean Gingell, Jeff O'Leary, Matt White, Dennis Hennessy 17-20
Rink 5: Myles Clements, Joe Cable, Eamon O'Flynn, Gary Clark 14-22
Rink 6: Terry Friday, Will Matthews, Simon Fishlock, Mick Sigamoney 16-17
The MC got off to a windy start here at Suttons. Blowing across the green corner to corner made for tricky conditions and although Surrey diid not let Berkshire get away to a quick start some players found it hard to adjust to the conditions. Looking at the points score one might think that this was a drubbing but in fact it was a closely fought match with, apart from one rink very close scores. Clarke's four players on Rink 1 had a close game all through but lost the tie during the last few ends. Rink 2 with skip Beeson and Graham at the back end were served well by Porter, who had a very good game and Cushen who was his usual supportive self. After a couple of ends of head shaking by Morton on Rink 3 the four kept in touch with their opponents right to the end. Neil at lead has settled into the higher level of competition well and Leach did not disappoint. Rink 4 with Hennessy skipping got off to a shaky start and were on occasion lucky to keep their opponents in sight. G.Clarke's Rink 5 suffered playing against an in form Berkshire rink. 2-10 down after 10 ends and 3-16 after 15 did not bode well and despite a spirited fight back over the last 6 ends they could not make up the 8 shot difference. Surrey player of the day for me was Fishlock playing three on Rink 6. With Friday leading and Matthews at two the rink was skipped by the reliable Sigamoney and a loss by 1 shot was ill deserved. Overall the performance was fair to middling and as I wrote earlier the score was not a true reflection. Surrey are by no means out of it, but two good results are required over the next matches.
President v London Parks Association 8.6.17 @ Epsom BC 133-90
Rink 1: Chris Jones, Pat Buckley, Derek Harvey, Les Owen 24-13
Rink 2: Don Davies, Dave Aburn, Geoff Taylor, Van de Roy Parker 18-19
Rink 3: Mike Glithero, Stefan Tomm, Alan Bennet, Peter Marshall 25-13
Rink 4: Bob Archer, David Lokkerbol, Colin Homes, Bill Ayling 25-14
Rink 5: John Meningen, Roy Ward, Martin Harbottle, Howard Quinnell 16-15
Rink 6: Dave Loxton, John Hannon, Peter Wenmouth, Jim Scott 25-16
Let me start this report by stating that the rumour spread by Scott that I attempted to trip him up in the Changing Room has no basis in fact. Indeed onlookers describe the event as him kicking me once he had found he was drawn on Rink 6. However being the solid person that I am, I am prepared to overlook the matter entirely. Now let me continue by describing the match. Firstly the talk in the clubhouse was of the condition of the green, for it was surely one of the best so far this season. The President, on the advice of Owen chose Rink 1 for his tussle, and tussle it was. Early stages were frustrating for as soon as a decent head was drawn up the opposing President who skipped used his size 6 woods to break up the head. Jones at lead played a great game with woods near or on the jack for much of the play. Luck certainly seemed to pass them by though until after tea when 8 shots in two ends changed the game. Parker's four on Rink 2 suffered early on but with some good bowls came bad to go down by only a single. JVP Marshall skipping Rink 3 had his men well tuned and came with a late surge to pip Ayling and Owen for top spot. Ayling's Rink 4 went about their work in the usual way with a strong lead through the game. A close tussle on Rink 5 for Quinnell's men but they held on for a single shot win. Who is left to report on, oh yes, it's Rink 6 where amazingly Scott's limp seemed to disappear very quickly as his team soon overcame his assertion that this was the heaviest rink on the green. It certainly is marvellous what adrenalin can do in curing perceived injuries! The match concluded, we sat down to what the opposing President described as the best meal he had ever eaten at a bowls match, well done Epsom BC.
President v Godalming & Farncombe BC 150th Anniversary 113-104
Rink 1: Alan Bradshaw, Roy Ward, Roger Lanham, Peter Marshall 21-16
Rink 2: Dave Hussey, John Hannon, Peter Wenmouth, Bill Ayling 18-23
Rink 3: Peter Duncan, Colin Popple, Graham Dawber, John Southwell 26-9
Rink 4: John Tucker, Terry Foote, Robin Fudge, Derek Harvey 17-19
Rink 5: Bob Archer, Rowland Pollitt, David Miller 10-24
Rink 6: Robin Taylor, David Lokkerbol, John Bennett, Edward Dear 21-13
It's not very often that one has the opportunity to visit a club on it's 150th Anniversary, but this was special. Situated in pleasant surroundings we were serenaded for 2 hours by a small orchestra on the bandstand, it attracted a large crowd as well as giving the President's team a nice accompaniment. I can remember some years ago when the President was Captain at his club, he laid on a 'Bowls to Music' afternoon and fun it was too. Something certainly inspired the Rink on 3 for they took 6 shots on the first end and never looked back. Southwell who skipped had to wear an incorrect shirt, but if it inspired him then so be it. Losers on the day were Ayling's Rink 2 who despite falling well behind did a good job to finish only 5 down. Miller on Rink 5 together with his two partners had it all to do when the skip forgot he should be playing, they played against a four and had to lose a quarter of their score. My position on the bank made for difficult viewing of Rink 6 but they seemed to have their opponents under control to come away with an 8 shot advantage. Rink 1 were never in trouble and with SVP Lanham and JVP Marshall at the back end victory was assured, although it was close for the first half. Tightest game of the day was the President's Rink 4 where some excellent first half bowls by all four players ensured a nice lead. Then the tea came out and things changed. Victory slipped away over the last 3 ends. Following the match the home side presented the President with a bannerette and a scroll hand painted by Norman, a very nice close to a good afternoon.
Surrey v Sussex @ Purley Bury BC 1.6.17 117-103
Rink 1: Peter Duncan, Terry Foote, Les Owen, Jim Scott 18-18
Rink 2: John Tucker, Steve Sanderson, Peter Hunt, Bill Ayling (sub), Paul Bennett 24-14
Rink 3: Bob Daintree, Roger Tarran, Peter Staples, Joe Cable 24-14
Rink 4: Colin Popple, Gerry Vincent, Derek Harvey, John Graham 20-14
Rink 5: Mike Glithero, Roger Lanham, David Miller, Trevor Pocock 17-22
Rink 6: Gavin Pocock, Phil Froude, Peter Marshall, Brian Cave 14-21
On what must surely have been the hottest day of the year Surrey, avenged the defeat of last season by putting on a great show at Purley Bury. Plaudit of the day must go to Rink 1 where Scott and his men came back from what would normally be certain defeat to grab a draw. This was certainly not on the cards in the early ends when a huge gap favoured the opponents. There appears to have been some inequality in the green for the two rinks on the opposite side to the clubhouse did not suit the Surrey players. Rink 6 skipped by Cave had a tussle with an early lead which gradually disappeared in later ends. Rink 5 had a similar experience which could well have been caused by Lanham forgoing the use of the President's 'Aero' bowls which have brought him success in previous matches, to return to his own woods this time. The President on Rink 4 skipped by the impressive Graham achieved another win. The support of all three to Graham ensured a terrific game with the home side taking a 4 on the 18th end to seal the win. Cable's Rink 3 and Bennett's Rink 2 battled it out for top spot. Bennett's rink shading it on ends won. This was not a moral win, for Bennett brought on Ayling as a sub for Hunt to ensure the win. With this being the summers day we always wish for, there was a healthy number of supporters and the teams certainly gave them an interesting match.
SHCL v Kent @ Maidstone BC 27.5.17 116-112
Rink 1: Myles Clements, Joseph Tindall, Will Matthews, Matt White 17-26
Rink 2: Sammy Tindall, Craig Baker, Don Leach, John Graham 14-17
Rink 3: Chris Jones, Graham Dawber, Elbio Gomez, Steve Shanley 26-8
Rink 4: Alex Neil, Terry Berry, Jeff O'Leary, Eamon O'Flynn 18-21
Rink 5: Paul Foley, Mike Dutton, Paul Bennett, Simon Clarke 24-21
Rink 6: John Tucker, Nigel Chapman, Simon Fishlock, Finlay Morton 17-19
Those who have visited Maidstone BC will remember the difficulty in finding the venue. The MC Manager was kind enough to give me a lift and a very nice tour of Maidstone town centre we had! It would of course help if the post code for the club was correct. All can be forgiven though as, in this match Surrey overcame Kent in a competitive match for the first time in many a year. This was a team performance in the true spirit of the term. On occasions such as this it is hard to single out players but it has to be noted. MC Manager Candeland had said that this was a trial for MC places, of course there are some who will not immediately gain a place but in this match they showed their potential. Rink 1 was an example with Clements leading for White and having a superb game and with young Jo Tindall playing at two the partnership set the team up for a good game. The score was certainly not representative of the game with their opponents having the rubs. Graham's lads on Rink 2 were in contention all through and were 10-11 after 15 ends, slipping away to lose by 3 at the finish. I think Leach and Graham played well as a back end pair. Sammy Tindall had a very neat start to his senior career, whilst leading on this rink. Rink 3 were most unsporting to their opponents allowing them very few shots in the first 15 ends with a score of 17-4. They relented at the end allowing them to double their score whilst they picked up 9 more. O'Flynn skipped Rink 4 and his team built up a cosy 17-11 shots at 15 ends but could only score one more to finish 3 shots adift. Clarke has a new image this year sporting a 1940s heart throb hairstyle and on Rink 5 he had the opportunity to parade it. This was a hard encounter with scores 10-15 after 10, 15-20 after 15 but with the determination of Bennett and the front pairing of Foley and Dutton they eased home despite some serious attempts by the opposition to force a draw. Another very tight game on Rink 6, where I was impressed with Fishlock in particular, his calm approach to the game coupled with excellent instructions to Morton made for an exciting finish. My comments at the start of the article about a team game were seen to manifest themselves when Graham decided to wear another players shirt, leaving the un-named player semi-naked in the changing room. Following the match the President was delighted to present Foley with his Home Counties flash after completing 10 matches. A much easier journey on the way home, thank goodness!
Surrey v Isle of Wight @ Milford BC 25.5.17 163-71
Rink 1: Robin Taylor, Alistair Cochrane, Derek Harvey Bill Ayling 26-18
Rink 2: Mike Glithero, John Round, Andrew Boarer, Jim Scott 27-5
Rink 3: Robert Wilson, John Hort, Gordon Beddall, Joe Cable 26-13
Rink 4: Bob Archer, Howard Quinnell, Mike Platt, Nigel Whiteman 34-8
Rink 5: Alex Neil, Mark Medhurst, Mick Gray, Eamon O'Flynn 21-16
Rink 6: Dennis Knight, Graham Dawber, Peter Marshall, Graham Robinson 29-11
Gosh, what a scorching day! I must admit to becoming ill from the effects of the heat and the fact that Zoe Hollins from Milford plied me with a box of Choc Ices, and I indulged rather more than I should. That aside let me describe the afternoon's match. The score tells the story with all rinks having the time of their lives on a simply smashing green. Looking across it was obvious how well it was playing with even the President on Ayling's Rink 1 having a splendid game. This was backed up by new recruit Cochrane playing his first match. This man is sure to be a favorite when selection comes around. Whiteman on Rink 4 together with his three team mates simply blew the opposition away, to take Top Rink. Cable on Rink 2 has obviously recovered from his troubles for he could be heard, albeit infreqently from where I was sitting in the shade. Scott in his newly aquired new County Cap led his four to a very easy win, not quite good enough though to pip Rink 4. Rink 6 on most greens presents a problem but Robinson's four found it to their liking today. It's not every day that one writes that the bottom rink had a win by 5 shots, but that happened in this match. All four played well but they were obviously up against the IOW's best rink. This was a grand day to be out reporting on bowls, a word of caution though, if Zoe Hollins walks towards you with a tray of choc ices ONLY TAKE ONE!! Following the after match meal the President was pleased to present Alistair Cochrane with his County Badge.
President v Southey BC 21.5.17 91-161
Rink 1: Sheila Ayling, Dorothy Roberts, Brian Cave, Derek Harvey 13-35
Rink 2: Jacqui Poat, Jill Huggett, Alan Shearing, Bill Ayling 22-18
Rink 3: Roger Lanham, Butch Manning Sylvia Russell 15-28
Rink 4: Robin Taylor, Colin Homes, Des Hanreck, Marion Beach 10-34
Rink 5: Graham Dawber, Roy Ward, Maureen Vandrau, Shan Maylin 12-20
Rink 6: Veronica Pickering, Pat Chappell, Neil Winter, Charlie Souter 19-26
This mixed match was supposed to be a tribute to Shan Maylin on her elevation to SCWBA President, from her club. Some celebration, for the home side at least!! It did not help that the Presidents' team turned up short handed. It has to be said that the home side also fielded more men than the Executive, but to be fair it would not have helped greatly if the Executive had had double the 23 players. I think the best I can write is that Rink 2 made a game of it against their opponents. Taking into account this was supposed to be a friendly I thought the Southey team on Rink 1 were very much up for it with their skip taking to firing shots whenever it looked like the President might have a few shots. Souter on Rink 6 was trailing badly until he picked up a 7, that helped raise his score considerably. These celebratory mixed matches are a real joy for the players (well except this one) where laughter and banter fill the air. I am sure that the best part of the day for the Presidents', was going home!
SHCL Surrey v Middlesex @ Croydon 20.5.17 136-85
Rink 1: Jonathan Winter, Bill Ayling, Charlie Souter, Pal Vamvacopoulos 17-18
Rink 2: Mark Porter, Mike Dutton, Graham Spencer, Paul Bennett 24-18
Rink 3: Jamie Tindall, Paul Manuel, Simon Greenwood, Finlay Morton 24-14
Rink 4: Myles Clements, Peter Staples, Simon Fishlock, Nathan Beeson 32-9
Rink 5: Pater Gay, Graham Dawber, Will Matthews, Mick Sigamoney 21-10
Rink 6: Paul Foley, Craig Baker, Don Leach, John Graham 18-16
After a week when weather has been, what can be described as bloody awful it was good to see the sun once again.
This SHC match was used by the MC Manager as a trial to watch some new faces go through their paces. I would think after this that he has a job on his hands to select a team, so promising were the majority of players on the green today. Leading the charge was Rink 4 with the hirsute Beeson skipping. Clements had a very good game at lead and was backed up well be Fishlock with Staples no being left out. They never gave their opposition a look in being 12-4 up at 10 ends 21-8 at 15 and running out 32-9. The ever reliable Sigamoney on Rink 5 had three players with him determined to show their worth, and I thought Mattews had a fine game. 15-3 at 10 ends was the bedrock of their game. Rink 3 skipped by Morton on his home green had Tindall and Manuel giving good service at the front to give Greenwood the opportunity of some good all round bowls. Bennet skipped Rink 2 and like me was probably singing that old song 'Oh Mr. Porter': his day was not up to his usual standard. Bennett was in excellent form , I must say, Vamvacopoulos's Rink 1 got off to a good start to be 11-4 up after 10 but let their opposition gradually claw the game back and score the winning single on the last end. Rink 6 as we all know can be tricky and in the early stages Graham's men stumbled being 6-12 down after 15, but a good finish saw them home. This was a good start to this competition and, as I wrote previously sets a problem for MC Manager Candeland in his future selections.
Surrey v Essex @ Wanstead Central 18.5.17 115-98
Rink 1: Neil Cooper, Roger Lanham, David Candeland, Peter Hunt 9-18
Rink 2: Martin Harbottle, Derek Pearce, Steve Sanderson, Joe Cable 24-15
Rink 3: Stefan Tomm, John Meningen, Graham Dawber, Derek Harvey 7-20
Rink 4: Peter Duncan, Colin Popple, John Tucker, Bill Ayling 23-22
Rink 5: John Mannering, John Hort, John Warren, Peter Marshall 31-14
Rink 6: Dave Hussey, Bill Hudson, Howard Quinnell, Mick Gray 21-9
What is it about the matches against Essex? Our trip to Wanstead was fine, come 1.00pm and the rain started and never relented, same as last season, although we managed to get to 18 ends this time. No wonder we struggle to get a team to play in this fixture. One rink that loved the conditions was Rink 5. Skipped by JVP Marshall they were flying although they let the opposition have a few shots over the last few ends. Gray on Rink 6 also had a good afternoon although he did describe the rink as difficult with the swing on the opposite side to the ditch, most unusual. My view of procedings was marred as I had to sit in the clubhouse but the far side of the green seemed to have the best of it. Ayling's men on Rink 4 struggled early on but managed a narrow win. One thing that can be said for President Harvey's rinks are that when he loses Surrey are sure to have won the game. Lady luck certainly was not on their side as far as Rink 3 was concerned, with wicks and knockups from the opposition going the opponent's way. I am concerned for Cable, the man has not seemed his normal self so far this season. Where are the loud comments, the cheeky cat calls? Rink 2 was quiet for quite a while today although it brightned slightly toward the closing stages as they edged away from their opponents. Hunt on Rink 1 with the Middleton Cup Manager Candeland on the rink, together with SVP Lanham should I would have thought had the Essex four for breakfast, but it proved to be them that got eaten. Common sense came at the 18 end when 48 bedraggled bowlers trooped off to the small changing rooms to dry off. The way this fixture is going it may have to be arranged for indoor!! Following the match the President presented John Meningen with his County Badge.
Surrey v Devon @ Yeovil 15.5.17 105-119
Rink 1: John Tucker, Jim Roberts, Steve Sanderson, Bill Ayling 26-10
Rink 2: Vernon Smith, Vic Hemmett, Gerry Vincent, Joe Cable 10-26
Rink 3: Martin Harbottle, Colin Popple, Peter Marshall, Peter Hunt 21-18
Rink 4: Roger Lanham, Dave Hill, Derek Harvey, Gordon Beddall 21-25
Rink 5: Peter Duncan, Fred Clarke, Edward Dear, Graham Robinson 18-17
Rink 6: Ron Brookbank, Peter Harwood, Dave Sowdon, Derek Clewley 9-23
Well, so much for sunshine! We set off in cloudy, dull conditions to our destination with our coach driver promising sunshine from 1.30pm onwards. Good job he's a better driver than a weather forecaster! Rain, rain rain all day, not heavy but that thin awful rain that gets to you. I must say that the poor start to our day was componded when the President forgot the sweets and the prize for the swindle and arriving at the venue was informed it was Surrey's match. We were also informed that there would be up to ten ladies preparing the food together with two men. and the President had only brought five gifts!! This did not bode well for the match and so it proved. Our third meeting resulted in a loss. Ayling on Rink 1 which was adjacent to the smoking area was well pleased with his three fellow bowlers who set off in great style. Cries of 'oggie, oggie' were heard several times across the green from Roberts. Problem was though at the other side of the green on Rink 6 Clewley's team was being treated to similar treatment by the opposition. The President's Rink 4 had a real tussle with their opposition and if they had not dropped a 5 and 3 in the last few ends would have come away with a win. Debutant Hill had a good steady game and with his tendency to heavy bowls contributed well to the scoring. Hunt's Rink 3 looked early on to be in for a thrashing but some good bowling by all earned them a win at the finish. Rink 5 skipped by Robinson were down for a good part of the match but came back to win by the odd shot. What, oh what, happened to Cable and his men goodness knows. Gone the encouraging cries from Cable, replaced I should imagine by groans as few good things went their way. Relief came as the match finished and we repaired to the clubhouse for tea. Yeovil always put on a good meal, and to the delight of SVP Lanham we were served chicken in a smooth onion sauce!!
Following the proceddings the President had much pleasure in presenting Dave Hill (Supreme) with his County Badge. Despite the crises a good day for all concerned.
Surrey v SCWBA @ Sutton 14.5.17 120-96
Rink 1: David Bridger, Howard Quinnell, Nigel Whiteman, Bill Ayling 16-15
Rink 2: David Loxton, David Lokkerbol, Mike Platt, Joe Cable 18-19
Rink 3: Colin Popple, Alf Medlin, Graham Dawber, Edward Dear 26-16
Rink 4: Alan Bradshaw, John Bennett, George Hope, John Cocoracchio 23-15
Rink 5: Frank Middleton, Dave walters, Peter Wenmouth, Derek Harvey 14-17
Rink 6: Robin Taylor, Peter Rapley, Bernie Pedersen, Peter Marshall 23-14
What a lovely day, and I must say I am pleased to be out in the sunshine. I am at present staying with SVP Marshall whilst my friend the President has much to do during his year. Unfortunately there is only room for me in the garage, where I am confined whist not on duty for the County, so roll on sunshine! This match certainly had a grudge to it following last season's drubbing from the Ladies, but honour was restored today. Rink 6 surged away at the start but was ggradually brought within a reasonable result by their opponents. Top rink went to Rink 3 skipped by Dear who all outplayed the Ladies four right through. The other four rinks were very close battles. A very intense match on Ayling's Rink 1 was won on the last end. Cable's Rink 2 were in a good position only to drop 9 shots in the last two ends. The President's Rink 4 was a very tight game with, as far as I could see, the Ladies having all the luck. Knock ups and wicks are not the type of shots that players of Surrey play. Theirs is a game of skill in drawing and good positional woods. My personal opinion is that morally the President's Rink took the honours. However the whole match was one where good fellowship and a laugh and a joke were utmost in players minds and to that end bowls was the winner.
Surrey v Cambridgeshire @ Newmarket Avenue 135-104
Rink 1: Bob Archer, Vic Hemmett, Edward Dear, Peter Marshall 18-18
Rink 2: Roger Lanham, Gavin Pocock, Howard Quinnell, Peter Miller 22-18
Rink 3: Dennis Knight, John Randall, Derek Harvey, Trevor Pocock 29-17
Rink 4: Martin Harbottle, Alan Reed, David Candeland, Gordon Beddall 28-9
Rink 5: Peter Duncan, Martin Morris, Steve Danderson, John Warren 13-24
Rink 6: Dave Hussey, Bill Hudson, Bernie Pedersen, Mick Gray 25-18
Oh! the glorious days of summer; the sun shining, a slight breeze and a reasonable green to play on. Such was the team's day to Newmarket. When I say a reasonable green, I might omit Rink 2 due to what appeared to be the resting place of one of the unsuccessful horses from the last race meeting, which provided a jumping off point for bowls travelling up the rink. Despite this the team led by SVP Lanham appeared to have a competitive game with their opponents, despite Skip Miller suffering the agony of a damaged thumb. Mind you a count of 6 and a 5 helped to boost their score. Early on things did not look good with Rink 1 skipped by JVP Marshall 0-12 down but with some good ends they recovered to end all square. Rink 5 skipped by Warren also suffered with a score of 0-19, however as the game moved on they pulled shots back to finish 11 down. Team of the day was Rink 4 with Beddall skipping. They were never in trouble and had a comfortable run to top rink. Hussey leadng for Gray on Rink 6 had a much improved game and some good end rink bowling from the four saw them seal a winning 7 shot advantage.The President's personal tally in the early matches has not seen a win. This match was different, with early ends for Rink 3 in which Randall was playing his first game, going their way they achieved 13 shots, unfortunately staying on that number for a few ends. Everything changed following a count of 6 and the team went on to a comfortable win. Following the match the President had the pleasure of presenting Randall with his County Badge.
Surrey v Dorset @ Poole Park 4.5.17 117- 109
Rink 1: Peter Duncan, Roger Lanham, Jim Mason, Peter Staples 16-23
Rink 2: Tony Bourne, Terry Foote, Peter Marshall, Colin Gray 22-16
Rink 3: Alex Neil, John Tucker, Gordaon Beddall, Bill Ayling 21-21
Rink 4: Roger Rashleigh, Norman Mann, Derek Harvey, Jim Scott 13-22
Rink 5: Howard Quinnell, Paul Manuel, Keith Searle, Peter Hunt 25-15
Rink 6: Roger Tarran, Martin Harbottle, John Warren, Joe Cable 20-12
One day's rest for the team and off on the road again. This time to a County that Surrey have not played for many years. Our journey took us to Poole Park, Dorset a delightful venue overlooking the lake. Venturing into the club house the team were housed in the Ladies Changing Room, where to be fair to everyone, Bourne was requested not to change until last, to allow the rest to attempt to swing the cat! The match was a far more pleasant experience than the heavy conditions experienced at Leamington. Early ends across the board seemed to favour Surrey apart from Staples's four on Rink 1 who were soon in trouble. This did not last and a really good late surge saw them pull back to finish only 7 down. Gray on Rink 2 seemed to have the best of things with Bourne putting up some good leading bowls. Similarly to Rink 1, Rink 4 skipped by Ayling suffered in the opening ends but some good bowls all round saw them finish with a well deserved draw. Rink 5 played well for virtually the whole of the game with luck going their way in tight measures. Cable, out on Rink 6 was quieter than normal, with all four playing steady bowls. Played 2 lost 2, is the President's personal record so far and with this game seemingly in their pocket the rink tripped up when reaching 13 shots. Qualifier Mann playing his first match for the County was an absolute joy to watch, with telling bowls on most ends; pity the rest couldn't emulate him. This bowler will go far, a thought I am sure that crossed Harvey's mind about where his opponents should go! The highlight for the President was to present Mann with his County Badge following the match. A quiet few days before the team venture into Cambridgeshire next Wednesday
Surrey v Warwickshire @ Leamington 2.5.17 116-114
Rink 1: Roger Lanham, Dave Harding, Dave Candeland, Peter Hunt 24-18
Rink 2: Alan Bradshaw, Jim Roberts, Peter Miller, Joe Cable 25-20
Rink 3: Neil Cooper, Roger Tarran, Mike Platt, Gordan Beddall 14-15
Rink 4: Dave Hussey, Martin Morris, Derek Harvey, Brian Cave 12-25
Rink 5: Dennis Knight, Martin Harbottle, Edward Dear, Bill Ayling 25-10
Rink 6: Robin Taylor, Steve Sanderson, Peter Marshall, Nigel Whiteman 16-26
Sense has returned and we are back to proper bowling outdoors with the normal weather for the time of year. The first match for new President Harvey, and what a match to start with. Tight right up until the last wood and a very slim win. I am pleased to be out and about again with the Surrey team following my recent trip to foreign parts. The story of the match is one of aching arms, strained backs and resignation that a hard few weeks lie in front of the team. Rinks 1 and 5 must have felt themselves very lucky to have been on the best of the six, and Rink 5 skipped by Ayling came out on top over their comrades on Rink 1. The way Hunt's rink started a huge winning margin looked on the cards but they gradually allowed their opponents into the game. Cable on Rink 2 was his usual noisy self and with Roberts and his irritating 'oggie, oggie oggie' call were heard throughout the match. Rink 3 with Cooper playing in borrowed socks were unlucky to go down on the last end. Rink 4 skipped by Cave were in their clash for 10 ends before their opponents luck and poor bowling from the President's rink turned the result. It must though be stressed that a score of 4 shots on the 18th end probably won the match for Surrey. Whiteman's Rink 6 struggled for most of the match but did have a spell where they narrowed the gap, but could not contain their opposition. The match was played on C Green and if this is any indication of the conditions to be found on the other four then I have a feeling the Nationals will produce some uncomplimentary comments. That being said the County is off to a winning start played with and against pleasant company.
Past Presidents v Warwickshire VPBA @ Welford 2.5.17 86-101
Rink 1: Peter Duncan, Bill Hudson, John Tucker, John Southwell 20-25
Rink 3: Colin Clarke: Colin Popple, Graham Robinson, Mick Gray 15-23
Rink 4: Bob Archer, David Smith, Ken Shopland, Derek Pearce 19-20
Rink 5: Tony Bourne, Charles Smith, Dave Walters, Terry Foote 19-16
Rink 6: Keith Atkins, Aga Hassan, Terry Sweeney Howard Quinnell 13-17
Reports from this match were rather sketchy, but with Rink 5 being the only winning rink it is suggested that all players in future partake of ham and eggs before the match to improve their overall game. It was agreed that Bourne who led placed his bowls in excellent short position ready for promotion to a spot nearer the jack. Unfortunately the biggest loss was by Rink 3, the Presidents rink although by his own admission Gray felt he saved the day for his rink. A losing start unfortunately but as we know the only way is up!
Bert Bowler's Holiday trip to Albufeira
Well the new season is upon us as I write my first report of 2017. Not really a County event but I thought you might like to know how my holiday jaunt to Portugal with members of Purley Bury, Purley, Hook & Southborough, Castle Carey (Somerset) and Worcester went.
It was a treat to have the President Derek Harvey with the group and I must admit that he provided some of the memorable events during the week! Firstly he suggested I might like to share the taxi to Gatwick on the 20th, and of course as these things go, the taxi was late. Arrival at the airport to book our cases in should have been easy with pre-booked boarding passes but oh no, that would be too simple. The President's case went through twice and he was charged £35 for an extra case!!
There is not much that can go wrong when enclosed in an aircraft and we landed safely. Travel Rep. there to meet us at Faro and away we go on the coach to our hotel. John Tucker had arranged four matches during the week, and the first was on carpet, no problem there then, except that chasing a stray wood heading for the next rink the President pulled up sharply and sustained an injury. Later that day I accompanied him to the local hospital clinic!! It could of course only happen to him that on sitting down to talk to the doctor we discovered that the man did not speak English! 3 hours later we emerge with a suspected Kidey infection, a prescription and 1 Euro poorer for the purchase of the sample pot!!
The rest of the week passed by with no major incidents and the group were successful in all four matches. The day for departure dawned wet and chilly and we were looking forward to our return home...............except, the return Boarding Passes are nowhere to be found, goodness is the President to be marooned in Portugal? Tour Rep. solves problem and we set off for Faro airport, get there too early and have to go around the check-in queue twice to kill time!
Flight called, all set for home; why are there 4 burly policemen getting on to our plane? It appears that a man on the inbound flight has pinched the bottom of a stewardess and the police have been called. Cabin crew off to the police station to make statements.
One and a half hours later we are at last on our way...............goodbye Portugal!
22nd December - President v SCIBA @ Croydon 91-132 (2-6)
Rink 1: Colin Clarke, Peter Marshall, Joe Cable, Trevor Pocock 12-23
Rink 2: Peter Duncan, Aga Hassan, Bernie Pedersen, Jim Scott 19-20
Rink 3: Tony Bourne, Derek Harvey, David Candeland, John Graham 10-27
Rink 4: Graham Dawber, Bill Ayling, Roger Lanham, Paul Vamvacopoulos 25-12
Rink 5: Robin Taylor, Terry Foote, Howard Quinnell, Peter Hunt 7-34
Rink 6: Edward Dear, Steve Sanderson, John Cocoracchio, Phil Clark 18-16
Well here we are again into a new season with the usual match v the indoor, and would you believe it, the score in points is the same as last season and there is only a 4 shot difference from then. The game was a two part affair with the gap of around 30 shots maintained for three quarters of the ends and then the indoor gradually eased away. Leading lights for the outdoor were Rink 4 with Vamvacopoulos skipping a very good four. SVP Lanham had an excellent game as the raucus cheering each time he bowled announced. Clark's men on Rink 6 had a very tight game with each side keeping the scores level for almost all of the 21 ends. It must be said that Clark, having been the last to arrive and almost late, left it late to take the win. Rink 2 skipped by Scott were unlucky to just fall short of the win going down by a single shot. Rink 3 handicapped as it was by having the President at two were in the most part outbowled by the opposition, although Graham produced some nice bowls. They did however manage to get into double figures. Rink 1 did their best to contain the opposition but finished 11 shots off the pace. Bringing up the rear was Rink 5 whose members were certainly not shown any Christmas spirit by their opposition. That's about the best I can say.
We draw a curtain on 2016 and I take the opportunity to wish all my readers a Happy Christmas and a really great New Year.