Rebecca triumphs at Weston open ladies’ tournament

Singles Champion Rebecca McMillan from St Andrew's BC.

Singles Champion Rebecca McMillan from St Andrew's BC. - Credit: Archant

St Andrews bowler Rebecca McMillan was a popular winner of the Weston Ladies’ Open Bowling Tournament singles title.

Rebecca McMillan, from the local St Andrews club, was a popular winner of the singles title for the first time in the 63rd Weston Ladies’ Open Bowling Tournament, sponsored by local opticians Optika.

The 23-year-old, who had been runner-up in the national junior pairs the previous week, played outstandingly to beat defending champion Joan McInally 23-15 in the final at Clarence Park.

She lost her first group match to another local, Ann Fewings (Wessex), but her accurate drawing saw her through. McInally made a brave defence of her title, edging into the final with a one-shot victory over Fewings, who was unlucky to knock in her opponent’s bowl for shot on the last end.

The apparently-tireless Fewings had a hectic and so-near-but-so-far week. With clubmate Joan Davis, she was runner-up in the ladies’ pairs, while she and two other Wessex players, Pam Turner and Barbara Jones, lost the ladies’ triples final only on an extra end.

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The ladies’ pairs champions were Victoria’s Sue Cooper (winner for the second time in three years) and Rose Cleeves. The latter had a double success, winning the mixed pairs with Clarence’s Don Towie, as they beat the 2013 champions Maureen Edwards (Thornfield) and Andy McMillan (St Andrews) 12-9.

Edwards and Andy McMillan teamed up with Rebecca McMillan and Rugby’s Pat Bax to steamroller their way to the mixed fours title, proving too strong in the final for the all-St Andrews team of Imogen Cracknell, Jim Keay and Judy and Barrie Forse.

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There was a third triumph for Rebecca McMillan, as her pin-point leading saw Maureen Edwards and Pat Bax to the ladies’ triples championship after a wonderful match against Fewings’s Wessex trio, who just would not lie down.

Third in the triples were Chris Hooper, Val Collicott and Margaret Noddings (Clarence Ladies). In the play-off for third, they beat the Victoria trio of Brenda Williams, Hannah Frye and Kay Wilson, who all took up bowls at the same time only three years ago and got among the prize-money in two events.

Teenagers Imogen Cracknell (14) and Fraser Ham (17) were unable to repeat their stunning mixed pairs success of 2015. But it took some superb bowls from the vastly-experienced Margaret Dyer and Nick Grenfell to beat them in the third-place play-off.

Joan McInally won the Ron Swain Trophy for the best non-winning North Somerset lady.

Results - ladies’ singles – quarter-finals: P Bax (Rugby) 8, R McMillan (St Andrews, Weston) 16; J Butler (Barbourne) 7, S Cridland (Hemyock) 16; J McInally (Ashcombe Pk) 15, M Dyer (Clevedon Prom) 12; A Fewings (Wessex Ladies) 15, C Hooper (Clarence Ladies) 9. Semi-finals: McMillan 21, Cridland 15. McInally 21, Fewings 20. Final: McMillan 23, McInally 15.

Ladies’ pairs – quarter-finals: J Wilkinson/J McInally (Ashcombe Pk) 6, B Williams/K Wilson (Victoria, Weston) 12; J Davis/A Fewings (Wessex Ladies) 11, E Wade/D Welfare (Wessex Ladies) 10; M Edwards (Thornfield, Rugby)/B Mumford (Welford, Warwicks) 8, R Cleeves/S Cooper (Victoria, Weston) 13; B Mangan (Victoria, Weston)/J Butler (Barbourne, Worcs) 9, N Peters, J Duffy (Wessex Ladies) 13. Semi-finals: Williams/Wilson 10, Davis/Fewings 17; Peters/Duffy 11, Cleeves/Cooper 23. Final: Davis/Fewings 10, Cleeves/Cooper 20.

Mixed pairs – group winners: R Cleeves (Victoria, Weston)/D Towie (Clarence) 6 pts, shot diff 24; M Edwards (Thornfield, Rugby)/A McMillan (St Andrews, Weston) 6 pts, shot diff 27. Group runners-up: I Cracknell (St Andrews, Weston)/F Ham (Clevedon) 6 pts shot diff 17; M Dyer (Clevedon Prom)/N Grenfell (Fry’s, Keynsham) 6 pts shot diff 14. First-place final: Cleeves/Towie 12, Edwards/McMillan 9. Third-place final: Dyer/Grenfell 12, Cracknell/Ham 8.

Ladies’ triples – group winners: R McMillan (St Andrews, Weston), P Bax (Rugby), M Edwards (Thornfield, Rugby) 4 pts, shot diff 24; P Turner, B Jones, A Fewings (Wessex Ladies) 6 pts, shot diff 32. Group runners-up: B Williams, H Frye, K Wilson (Victoria, Weston) 4 pts, shot diff 10. C Hooper, V Collicott, M Noddings (Clarence Ladies) 6 pts, 15. First-place final: McMillan, Bax, Edwards 10, Turner, Jones, Fewings 8 (after extra end). Third-place final: Hooper, Collicott, Noddings 12, Williams, Frye, Wilson 9.

Mixed fours – group winners: I Cracknell, J Forse, J Keay, B Forse (St Andrews, Weston) 6 pts, shot diff 25; R McMillan, A McMillan (St Andrews, Weston), P Bax (Rugby), M Edwards (Thornfield, Rugby) 6 pts shot diff 25. Group runners-up: J Ratcliffe, J Ashmore, C Burgess, J Couch (West Backwell) 6 pts, shot diff 20; J Harvey, P Edge, B Edge, D Bendall (Keynsham) 5 pts, shot diff 22. First-place final: McMillan, McMillan, Bax, Edwards 15, Cracknell, Forse, Keay, Forse 4. Third-place final: Ratcliffe, Ashmore, Burgess, Couch 15, Harvey, Edge, Edge, Bendall 6.

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