Four agonising one-shot defeats for St Andrews

PUBLISHED: 10:29 17 January 2018 | UPDATED: 12:10 17 January 2018

Wessex Bowls Club ladies.

Wessex Bowls Club ladies.


St Andrews suffered four one-shot defeats in four competitions, but were heartened by a 37-shot victory over local rivals Victoria.

A thumping win over local rivals Victoria was some consolation for St Andrews as they suffered agonising, one-shot defeats in four competitions over the weekend.

That 37-shot victory came in the Weston Mixed League as they won convincingly on three of the four rinks, highlight being the 26-5 away success by Paul Smart, Roger Brereton, Rebecca McMillan and Phil Villis.

St Andrews 70 (14), Victoria 33 (2) – home: A Cooper, Jacquie Yeates, Audrey Powell, L Stocker 21-7; Carolina Venn, Karen Cromey, J Keay, S Stocker 16-5. Away: P Smart, R Brereton, Rebecca McMillan, P Villis 26-5; Jill Bishop, L Fisher, R Venn, A McMillan 7-16.

Saints looked set to begin their Somerset County League season with a victory, as the two home rinks piled up a 31-shot advantage and they led by six overall with just the away teams to finish.

However, Don Bailey’s four, who had done well to stay within a shot or two of their opponents for most of the game, dropped five shots in the last two ends to lose by six.

The other away rink, well beaten, picked up a two on the penultimate end to keep Saints ahead but then conceded two on the last as Taunton emerged one-shot winners.

However, it was not a bad result for Saints, considering that they had rested some of their best players and given County League debuts to several.

St Andrews 84 (4), Taunton Vivary 85 (14) – home: S Stocker, L Fisher, K Curtis, M Stocker 27-16; T Hyde, R Brereton, J Keay, P Villis 30-10. Away: G Tofte, B May, A McMillan, L Stocker 11-37; A Cooper, G Cooper, G Webber, D Bailey 16-22.

Saints threw away their chance of reaching the last 16 in the national over 60s double-rink competition when they lost to Weymouth-based Moonfleet.

After 13 of the 15 ends, they were ahead on both rinks and by seven overall. Then disaster struck, as Barrie Forse’s away quartet conceded five and seven on consecutive ends, which gave Moonfleet a lead of two with three ends left.

Mike Stocker’s home four then dropped a three and Moonfleet comfirmed their superiority on their own green to win by six overall.

St Andrews 31, Moonfleet 37 – home: T Hyde, T Yeeles, K Curtis, M Stocker 19-13. Away: K Uglow, D Stott, A McMillan, B Forse 12-24.

Saints suffered more blows to their national championship hopes at the weekend with one-shot defeats in three competitions.

Firstly, a fine performance by Judy Forse in the ladies’ over-60 singles nearly earned her a notable away victory over Taunton Deane’s formidable Sue Cridland, but she lost 20-21.

There was double disappointment when the area final of the mixed fours and area semi-final of the men’s fours both saw Saints’ teams beaten by one.

Carolina Venn, Rebecca McMillan, Darrell Johnston and Barrie Forse lost 15-16 on the extra end at neutral Street to a team from Dorchester in the mixed. Killed ends by the opposing skip when Saints were holding fours and fives proved decisive.

At almost the same time and by the same score, Andrew Owens, Sam and Lee Stocker and Craig Walker missed out on a place in the men’s fours area final when they were edged out by Street, having led 9-5 and 14-8.

It was an uncharacteristically bad week for Barrie Forse. In addition to the defeats already mentioned, he went down 12-21 at home to Ilminster’s Will Anderson in the national over 60 singles.

Then, with Ken Uglow, Darrell Johnston and Mike Stocker, he lost 14-18 at home to a strong team from Clarrie Dunbar in the county fours, having led 14-12 with two ends left.

However, there were a couple of St Andrews national successes. Andrew Owens won 21-17 away to Taunton Deane’s Charlie Takle in the two-wood singles. Mo Millard, Jackie Pitman and Ann Campbell had an excellent 25-13 victory away to a Watchet team in the ladies’ triples.

Saints notched up an impressive mixed friendly win at North Petherton. John Wilkes, Dee Cooper, Sue Sinclair and Andy McMillan finished with a six to complete a 20-shot rink success and victory by 32 overall.

Darrell Johnston’s rink also won well, with partially-sighted bowler Clive Robinson making his season’s club debut.

North Petherton 43, St Andrews 75: Karen Cromey, C Robinson, R Venn, D Johnston 25-12; J Wilkes, Dee Cooper, Sue Sinclair, A McMillan 33-13; Jill Bishop, Judy Forse, A Cooper, Rebecca McMillan 17-18.

Wedmore men played in the County Two Rink Cup - home and away - against Clevedon and lost on both rinks with the overall score 26 shots to 48.

Colin Moss skippered the home side who were never in front and simply could not contain the opposition. Eddie Payne’s away rink managed to keep the damage down to five shots, losing 14 shots to 19.

Wedmore won two mixed friendlies, away to Woodspring and at home to Long Ashton.

At Woodspring the score was 2-0 on rinks and 39-19 on overall shots. Alan Birch’s side took the lead on end four and steadily pulled away with a strong finish of nine shots on the last four ends, sealing the 25-8 victory.

Julie Master’s team started well but lost the lead on end 11, after which it was a close game with the scores level on end 17. A three score on the last end clinched a 14-11 win.

At Woodspring, it was one-all on rinks and 41 shots to 31 overall for Wedmore. Denis Stansfield’s group took over on end two and, propelled by a six on end eight, cantered to victory, scoring 26-14.

Julie Masters’ and co started well with an 11-shot lead at end 10. Long Ashton began to claw their way back, winning six of the remaining eight ends, including a six score, to squeeze out a winning score of 15-17.

Wessex Ladies Bowling Club held their first coffee morning of 2018 and invited Mrs June Stevens of Weston General Hospital League of Friends to receive two cheques. Vice-captain Verlie Edwards had nominated the scanner appeal as the club’s charity and Verlie, alongside president Norma Peters, presented a cheque for £458.

Chairman of Waves of Harmony Choir Norma Peters presented a cheque for £150, which was raised at the carol concert in December.

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