St Andrews Ladies suffer defeat on the last end

St Andrew BC ladies.

St Andrew BC ladies. - Credit: Archant

St Andrews Ladies lost in the final of the Somerset County Optika Top Nine Trophy on the last shot.

St Andrews Ladies suffered last-end heartbreak in the final of the Somerset County Optika Top Nine Trophy at Taunton Deane.

With the score tied at 1-1, it was left to the fours to decide the destination of the trophy. The Saints quartet, who had dropped a hotshot eight at a crucial stage, came back well to make it 21-21 playing the last end. Their No 3 Jackie Ware drew the shot, but, in tremendous tension, the Yeovil skip did likewise to give her club the trophy.

Saints had been put in the driving seat by a brilliant pairs performance from teenager Imogen Cracknell and Audrey Powell, who romped home by 21 shots. The St Andrews triple lost by two, setting up that high-pressure finish in the fours. It was no consolation for the Saints and their vociferous supporters that they finished 18 up overall on shots.

There was controversy early in the fours game, when it was discovered that a lighter outdoor jack was being used. Competition organiser Brien Bradford, the umpire, ruled that the end should be replayed, a blow to Saints since they were holding three shots.

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St Andrews Ladies 1, Yeovil Ladies 2 – pairs: I Cracknell/A Powell 34-13; triples: M Millard, J Pitman, A Campbell 15-17; fours: C Venn, J Forse, J Ware, M Favis 21-22.

Despite an impressive victory at home by Phil Villis’s rink, St Andrews men were well beaten in their final Somerset County League match of the season, against Clarrie Dunbar.

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St Andrews 63, Clarrie Dunbar 99 – home: L Yeates, R Brereton, R Gill, P Villis 23-11; G Guest, I Lamb, B Reeves, D Johnston 17-19. Away: R Smith, W Ainsworth, N Sell, D Bailey 5-42; J Keay, G Cooper, R Venn, S Davies 18-27.

Ken Uglow, Phil Villis and Barrie Forse reached the final of the Somerset county triples when they were 16-13 away winners over a Purnells trio. Villis, Forse and Darrell Johnston – he was not available for the game – are the defending champions.

St Andrews Ladies registered a convincing victory over Isle of Wedmore in a friendly match. Barbara Huggett’s triple finished 19 shots ahead, winning 16 of the 18 ends.

St Andrews Ladies 39, Isle of Wedmore Ladies 12: C Riley, A Greenwood, M Pattenden 17-9; K Dobney, S Priory, B Huggett 22-3.

Steve Davies and Imogen Cracknell won the Premier Threes Mixed Pairs at St Andrews, beating Carolina and Richard Venn in the final. The winners had knocked out Judy and Barrie Forse in the semis, while the Venns beat Ann Campbell and Phil Villis, only unbeaten pair in the groups.

Imogen Cracknell is in three of St Andrews’ indoor finals this weekend – the ladies’ and mixed pairs and the mixed triples. Judy Forse plays Carolina Venn in the ladies’ singles, while Andrew Owens and Phil Villis clash in the men’s equivalent.

St Andrews indoor finals weekend line-up - Saturday (10am) - ladies’ singles: Judy Forse v Carolina Venn; men’s pairs: Andrew Owens/Barrie Forse v George Cooper/Richard Venn. 2pm: ladies’ pairs: Jennifer McMillan/Imogen Cracknell v Carolina Venn/Audrey Powell; mixed fours: Mo and Graham Millard, Ellie and Brian Reeves v Ken Uglow, Jackie Pitman, Ann Campbell, Don Bailey.

Sunday (10am) - mixed pairs: Imogen Cracknell/Steve Davies v Ken Uglow/Ann Campbell; drawn triples: Barrie Forse, Sue Sinclair, Jim Keay v Brian Reeves, Carolina and Richard Venn. 2pm: - mixed triples: Darrell Johnston, Judy and Barrie Forse v Imogen Cracknell, Rebecca McMillan, Don Bailey. Men’s singles: Andrew Owens v Phil Villis.

Rod Smith will be attempting to complete a championship double in Clarence’s indoor competition finals this weekend.

Already the men’s outdoor club champion, he plays John Atkins on Sunday in the final of the indoor singles. Smith beat defending champion Mick Edlin on his way to the final.

The redoubtable Roger Burrough is in two long-mat finals, while the club’s short-mat secretary Adrian Gardiner is in one final upstairs and could be in two downstairs.

Clarence finals weekend line-up - long-mat - triples: Nigel Martin, Janet Anning, Lucy Oldham v Barrie Underwood, Barbara Jones, Elizabeth Williams. Unified pairs: Ros Francombe/Veronica Jones v Roger Burrough/Adrian Gardiner. Mixed pairs: Roger and Pauline Burrough v Ken and Carol Marshall. Singles: Rod Smith v John Atkins.

Short mat - two-wood pairs: Joy Bailey/Shirley Scoins v Maureen Milford/Carol Edlin. Two-wood singles: Alan Bishop or Valerie Gardiner v Pam Dunn or Adrian Gardiner. Four-wood singles: Adrian Gardiner v Mick Edlin or Alan Bishop.

Isle of Wedmore men had a decisive win over Donyatt in the County League, taking rinks by three to one and an overall score of 96 shots to 53.

At home, Colin Moss took his men to the front from the start and had a 16-shot lead by halfway. This steadily increased and was rounded off by a five score on the last end to triumph 37-10, winning 16 of 21 ends.

In the other home rink, Steve Heeley’s crew also won 16 ends, putting them ahead throughout taking a fine 25-5 victory.

Since the away rinks were played at the same time as those at home they couldn’t know that they had such a good cushion. Eddie Payne’s team played hard to take the lead at end four and although Donyatt came within two points of them at one stage, they stretched that to 11 and won comfortably by 26-16.

Dave Nicholls and company ran into strong Donyatt opposition and became the whipping boys of the match. They lost a small lead on end four and the opposition moved away to build up a lead of 16 shots, which Wedmore cut back by a little flurry towards the end, going down 22-8.

That win took Wedmore to second place in the top division, but they had faced harder times against Yeovil, losing by three rinks to one and by 80-58 overall.

The winning rink was thanks to Steve Heeley’s side playing away. They started slowly and were six shots down by end 13, before pulling back to one shot behind after a five score on end 20. Wedmore duly won the last end for a winning score of 20 shots to 18.

In the other away rink, Colin Moss’s group were in a closely-fought game, losing the lead on end 10 when Yeovil built up a lead of eight shots by end 17. Wedmore put in a strong finish, scoring seven shots over the last four ends to be frustrated by just one point at 15 shots to 16.

Yeovil had put strong representatives out for the away leg and Wedmore lost both home rinks, although not without a tussle with Eddie Payne’s outfit. Behind for the first half of the game, they took a one-point lead at end 11. Unfortunately for Wedmore, Yeovil accelerated towards the finish to win 23-14.

Dave Nicholls’ group had a harder time as Yeovil commanded a lead of 14 shots by end 12 and kept it to win 23-9.

Over this first season in the top county division, Wedmore played six and won four, a very satisfactory record.

In a mixed match away to Bridgwater Durleigh, it was one rink each with a narrow overall 31-27 win for Wedmore.

Beryl Carson’s ensemble took the lead early on and built it to nine shots by end 11. Despite a late push by Bridgwater, they held that lead for a good 19-10 win.

Maureen Hordle’s foursome were in a close match most of the way, being in the lead at one point, but cold not hold Bridgwater as they pulled away to win 17-12.

For the final match of the season, the mixed squad were away again, this time to Minehead.

It was a match of mixed fortunes with Wedmore losing two rinks to one, but coming out on top with an overall score of 58-52.

Mike Green’s gang went ahead on end rink four and stayed there, building up a lead of 15 by end 13, then 17 at end 18, when Minehead pulled back four over the last four ends leaving Wedmore to triumph 23-11.

In a tight game, Beryl Carson’s bunch led from end three to end 17, but were two down going into the last end, a score of one left them with a narrow 19-20 loss.

Maureen Hordle’s group were behind most of the way, but put up a spirited finish, winning nine shots over five ends to go into the last end just one down. Both sides agreed a draw would be a fitting finish, but Minehead promptly scored four to win 21-16.

Wedmore’s mixed squad played 17 matches over the season, winning 13, providing a feel good factor for the players and club.

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