Shell-shocked. That was the mood after Thursday’s total hammering at the hands of our friends and enemies at Hexham House. We had needed to win the match to have our chances of winning the West Tyne League in our own hands, though maybe a 2-5 defeat would have been enough to give us a chance. All such calculations were rendered futile, however, as we lost 0-7, giving Hexham House a six-point lead at the top of the table with just two matches to play.
If we were searching for some crumbs of comfort it might be said that after 15 ends two of our rinks were each behind by only one shot (11-12 and 10-11). Indeed, Keith’s rink was only 12-13 down going into the very last end, then lying one for a draw until Elvaston alumnus Clive Knott played one of the many bowls of his life to remove our shot bowl and claim two for the home side. But however close these rinks were, the other two both lost 11-22 – a comprehensive going-over which leaves us in a position where only a mathematician would say we could reclaim the title.
It wouldn’t need a mathematician to work out the total number of league points gained from that match and the ladies’ efforts at Ponteland the day before. They lost all three rinks to go down 0-12 on points, bringing a sad end to a run of six consecutive away matches. Let’s hope they recognise the Elvaston green when they finally get a home game next week. Is it tempting fate to say that this is against Forest Hall, the bottom team in the league and without a win this season? Ok, we shan’t say it.
One defeat which was not totally bad was Trevor Field’s 13-15 defeat by Jimmy Adams of Alston in the West Tyne Singles. As noted last week, Trevor had won 15-9 in the first leg, so although a win would have been a bonus, the priority was not allowing Jimmy to make up his deficit; in the event, the home lead never went beyond four, but since that figure was reached after only three ends there was a need to settle down quickly. The final is against Steve Doneathy of Prudhoe, also to be played at Alston.
So did we win anything? Yes! Jean Allen and Betty Boaden won the Northumberland section of the EWBA over-55 Pairs, and go down to Leamington Spa to represent the county. Jean will also be in action in the Singles, having got to the County Final with a brilliant win against Rachel Proctor; in the Final on the weekend of 25-27 July Jean plays Pat Browne, with both players eligible to play in the National finals. News of exact timings will be posted in the clubhouse and also on the website. Well done Jean for taking the “dis” out of this week’s disappointments.