Last weekend the Henley Bowling Club held the finals of the season-long Knockout Competitions. Apart from the Ladies’ and the Men’s Championships, all the Knockout Competitions are mixed gender and handicapped.
On Saturday morning, the Married Pairs or Partners final was played between Gill & Maurice Robins and Jo & Dave Wilson. This was a repeat of the 2018 final and the result was the same with Gill & Maurice coming out on top. Mind you, the Wilson’s had to give their opposition an 8 shot lead because of handicap differences and over the eighteen ends did well to close the gap, only going down 17-14. On the next rink the 3 Wood Singles was played out between Kevin Currill and Kevin Browne who was defending his title. Browne had a handicap of 2 over Currill so needed to get to 23 to win whilst Currill only needed 21. The game was fairly even to the sixteenth end with the score being 10-10. Browne then took what looked like a commanding lead at 18-10 but Currill fought back and won eight of the next ten ends to win with a score of 21-21. There was only one final played in the afternoon which was probably just as well as by this time the temperature was at least 30 deg C. The game was 91-Up which is when the four closest bowls to the jack score, 4, 3, 2 & 1 respectively. The final was played between Dave Wilson and Kevin Browne and with Wilson having the higher handicap, he needed to score 97 to Browne’s 91. Browne took an early lead over the first few ends but after Wilson levelled the score at 25 all, he took command to reach the penultimate end with a socre of 96-84. Browne had one last chance to move the jack back which would have seen him win but couldn’t find the accuracy needed and Dave Wilson won the game.
The Sunday opened with somewhat cooler weather and the morning games were the 4 Wood Singles with Norman Daniells versus Dave Wilson and the 4 Wood Pairs with Kevin Browne & Kevin Currill versus Romy Painter & Peter Falle. The 4 Wood Pairs was dominated by the two Kevin’s and although Painter and Falle battled hard, Currill in particular was on form, always managing to snatch a good result with his last wood. Browne and Currill won with a score of 26-8, finishing in much damper weather than the previous day. The 4 Wood Singles competition started off fairly evenly with Wilson taking the lead on the eighth end at 6-5. Daniells then had a run of five ends scoring 2 shots an end and, although Wilson fought back to only be 14-15 down, Daniells won through with a score of 21-14. The afternoon saw the prestigious Ladies’ Championship between Gill Robins and Joan Edwards and the Men’s Championship between Kevin Currill and Dave Wilson. The Ladies’ match saw last year’s winner Robins, also the Club’s Champion of Champion, defending her title but Edwards put up a very strong fight. There was nothing to choose between them after twenty-two ends with the score level at 17-17. However, Robins then took control over the last three ends to win 21-17. The Men’s game was less thrilling. Currill carried forward the form he had shown all weekend and dominated play to beat Wilson by 21-6. After a short break, Robins and Currill played the Champion of Champions final over 10 ends. After eight ends the score was tied 4 all but Robins put up a short jack on the ninth end and suddenly lost her line to see Currill take 4 shots. Although Robins got back 1 shot on the tenth end, it was too late and Kevin Currill (right photo on left) finished off a fine weekend by becoming the Club’s new Champion of Champions.
All finals were well supported by the attendance of Club members which was appreciated by all the competitors. The Club now focusses on it’s last two matches of the season, the first is against Hagbourne which is a Plomer Cup match and Henley are currently top of that league. The second is against Hurst and is an Oddfellows Triples League match where Henley are in second place. Could the Club repeat the success it had 2 years ago when it won both leagues?
The Club also played a friendly four mixed triples match against visitors Flackwell Heath last Wednesday (6 September) in scorching heat, winning with an overall score of 69-51. Kevin Currill, with Richard Kingston and Ramsay Adams led from the start until the eleventh end when they lost 3 shots to put them down 9-10. From then o, they never looked back and ran out winners 27-12. Colin Ward, with Colin Fall playing his first match for Henley, and Jeanie Davies led from the third end running out winners 19-13. About half way through the match, the heat got the better of the opposing skip so play stopped for about 15 minutes. A new Henley member, Rachel Shaw, who was watching the match, kindly stepped in for the opposition allowing the game to continue. Kevin Browne, with Jenny Wingrove and Nigel Bridges struggled up to the sixteenth end when they levelled the score at 10-10 and held on to get a draw at 11-11. Peter Borsberry, with Peter Goddard and Dave Palmer were even on the fourteenth end 10-10 however, they dropped a 4 on the sixteenth end, going down 12-15.