Henley Bowls Club Fall Short at Burghfield and Win at Harwell

On Wednesday 22 June, Henley entertained Burghfield in a five mixed triples OTL match with Henley falling short by ten shots 78-88. Henley won on two rinks and lost on three resulting in 4 points to Henley and 10 to Burghfield. Dave Wilson with Sally Daniells and Brian Duddy were level 10 all after eleven ends, 7 up after sixteen ends, dropped a 4 on the seventeenth end to run out winners 22-17. Gill Robins with Simon Hatcher and Nigel Bridges were level 11 all after twelve ends, and again level 15 all after sixteen ends, 1 down after seventeen ends but managed to pick up 3 on the final end to win 18-16. Peter Borsberry with Colin Ward and Joan Edwards raced to a 5 shot lead after ten ends, but could only score 1 over the next eight ends to go down 11-15. Norman Daniells with Jeanie Davies and Peter Watkins were 11 down after ten ends, fought back with a 6 on end fourteen and a 3 on end seventeen, but went down 15-20. Barrie Davies with Andy Scott and Jo Wilson struggled from the start, were 10 down after ten ends, managed to reduce the margin, but went down 12-20.

On Thursday 23 June, Henley entertained Harwell in a four triples mixed friendly winning on three of the four rinks by 91-47. Gill Robins with Kevin Browne and John Wilkinson started with a 4 and a 6 on the first three ends, maintained their momentum running out winners 43-6. Andy Scott with Nigel Bridges and Maurice Robins level 4 all after six ends, then gradually pulled away to win 18-8. Peter Borsberry with Sally Daniells and Jim Walter were 8 down after six ends, managed to pick up the pace, were level after fourteen ends and ran out winners 18-16. Norman Daniells with Martin Taylor and Jim Turner were 10 down after ten ends, managed to find the green, finishing just 2 short to go down 15-17.

On Sunday 26 June, the Club held it’s first Mixed Triples Gala Day since 2019. The weather was kind to us with warm sunny intervals interspersed with some blustery winds but fortunately nothing blew away. Twelve teams took part from Henley, Didcot & Hagbourne, Island Bohemians, Maidenhead Thicket, Palmer Park, Suttons and Wargrave. Pangbourne had to withdraw because of a double booking so Henley put in three teams instead of the planned two. It was so good to get back to normal and have a fun yet competitive social bowling event. Once again, this event was made possible by one of our sponsors A.B. Walker putting up the prize money of £200 for the winners and £100 for the runners-up and making a major contribution to the raffle and other treats. As usual, the day started off with Richard Kingston holding the “Spider” where all participants, each standing with one foot in the ditch, delivered a bowl in the hope of ending up closest to the jack which sits under a “Spider”. Richard Nice from Palmer Park’s “A” team won a bottle of single malt whisky which he declared as his first success at Spider.

The competition proper then started at 10:00am.  The teams were split into two Pools so that everyone in a Pool played everyone else. The winners of each Pool then faced each other in a Final. Each game was 6 ends long and took just under an hour each. After the first two games, players had a quick tea/coffee break before playing their third game which was followed by lunch. In previous years, teams were provided with a cooked meal which required great organisation and a lot of hard work from a band of volunteer cooks. It also meant the games had to be run on a strict timescale so that players were available to sit down and eat when the food was ready to be served. This year, with team’s bringing their own packed lunch or visiting the local cafe in Mill Meadows, the event was far more relaxed for Henley Club members. The last two games were played after lunch and this was followed by everyone sitting down for tea and cake whilst Pool positions were calculated. Palmer Park “B” topped their Pool by winning all five games but the other Pool was a close run affair with The Robins (a Henley team) just beating the Palmer Park “A” team on shot difference. Before the final got underway, the raffle draw took place which was kindly done by Deputy Mayor of Henley-on-Thames, Donna Crook.

The final got underway at 5:00pm and a tense event took place between the Henley Robins and Palmer Park’s “B” team. The Henley team won out in the end and here we see Ross Parker, Operations Manager for A.B. Walker presenting the Gala Day shield to the finalists. From left to right, they are: Ross Parker, Operations Manager, A.B. Walker. Palmer Park – Fernando Sheppard (No 2), Sue Stenning (Lead), Steve Stenning (Skip). Henley – Norman Daniells (No 2), Gill Robins (Skip), Brian Duddy (Lead).

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