Thornely and Willmott claim singles titles
Club finals weekend produced the usual high standard of bowling on a parched and challenging Lindfield green. Guy Thornely made up for losing in the men's singles final last year by emphatically winning this year's title, beating Keith Holman 21-8 in a fine display of draw bowling. Guy found good weight from the first end, but it took Keith several ends to come to terms with a tricky rink, he was 10-2 down before he fought back with some telling woods, however Guy's consistent drawing combined with his early lead saw him home.
In the ladies' singles Sue Willmott clinched the title for the third time, beating Shirley Foxwell fairly comfortably on another difficult rink, with bowls sometimes turning aggressively, and running straight at other times. As with many of the games today the early ends were closely contested, until one of the players (in this case Sue) got to grips with the rink, and quickly pulled ahead.
There's a new name on the men's Two Wood trophy, as Colin Stevens capped a good season by beating Steve Minter 21-19 in a hard-fought battle. Colin was a few shots ahead for most of the match, but Steve briefly overtook him towards the end, but with the finishing line in sight both players struggled to find the weight, which resulted in a run of consecutive dead ends, until Colin drew a foot behind the jack to clinch the result.
In the ladies' Two Wood it was a familiar show-down, as Jennie Sandford narrowly beat Carol Watson, to win the competition for the third time.
Alan Gardiner had another busy day, skipping in the Aussie Pairs in the morning with veteran Geoff Nelson against challengers Lucas Gorringe (playing in his first club final) and Stella Sayers. There was nothing to separate the teams after half a dozen ends, but Geoff and Alan gradually broke free to collect shots freely in the second half, and despite Stella trailing the jack into the ditch on several ends, she and Lucas couldn't quite get back into the game.
Alan Gardiner then featured in the men's pairs final, with Phil "The Power" Taylor (playing in his 3rd final of the weekend), against newly crowned singles champion Guy Thornely, with partner Steve Gorringe. Alan and Phil had a similar game to the Aussie pairs, it was close for the first half, but then they gradually fell away in the second half, as a mixture of good bowling and some bad luck counted against them, with Gorringe and Thornely piling on the shots, and with 2 ends left to play they shook hands.
The Two Wood Triples produced an incredibly tight finish that could have gone either way. Lucas Gorringe, Sol Sait and Carol Watson were a few shots behind for most of the match, then somehow picked up 5 shots on the penultimate end to turn 14-11 down into 14-16 up, going into the last end. However an unlikely win was scuppered however by Peter Gacsall who first knocked the jack back and sideways (to team mates Chris Jarvis's and Dave Walker's bowls) for 2, and then threaded through a series of short bowls to get 3rd wood - and the match.
Results from Monday 29th August:
Ladies 2 Wood: Jennie Sandford 16 - Carol Watson 13.
Aussie Pairs: Geoff Nelson & Alan Gardiner 20 - Lucas Gorringe & Stella Sayers 7.
Mens 2 Wood: Colin Stevens 21 - Steve Minter 19.
Mens Championship: Guy Thornely 21 - Keith Holman 8.
Ladies Championship: Sue Willmott 21 - Shirley Foxwell 10.
2 Wood Triples: Chris Jarvis, David Walker, & Peter Gacsall 17 - Lucas Gorringe, Sol Sait, & Carol Watson 16.
Mens Pairs: Steve Gorringe & Guy Thornely 27 - Phil Taylor & Alan Gardiner 11.
Results from Sunday 28th August:
Ladies Pairs: Daphne Todd & Carol Watson 24 - Kath Honeysett & Sue Willmott 17.
Ladies Backbone: Joan Hampton 21 - Joy Mayall 11.
Butfoy 100 Up: Phil Taylor 100 - Frank Morris 83.
Mens Handicap: Alan Gardiner 21 - John Truran 11.
Men's Backbone: David Highton 21 - David Walker 16.
Mens Veterans: David Glossop 21 - Phil Taylor 18.
Ladies 100 Up: Carol Watson 100 - Sue Willmott 60.
Mens 100 Up: Paul Sandford 103 - Adam Harding 67.
Tony Allcock team fall at last hurdle
There was disappointment at (neutral venue) Horley today as Lindfield's Tony Allcock (over-60's mixed double rink) team narrowly lost the south-east regional final to Bromley by just 3 shots. The rink of Jennie Sandford, Sue Willmott, Paul Sandford and Roger Green were always in control of their game, minimising their opponents' opportunities to score while steadily accumulating shots and eventually winning 17-8.
It was a different story for the other quartet of Margaret Atkins, Carol Watson, Ian Watson and Keith Holman, who started slowly and never really got going, dropping two 4's and a 5 on their way to losing 13-25.
Roger Green's team played a slower game to finish 4 ends behind Keith's, and they were always mindful of trying to close the overall shot deficit. For a moment it looked like the final end might yield the 2 shots needed for a Lindfield victory, after Jennie, Sue and Paul put woods into the head to hold 3, but the Bromley number 3 first played an excellent running wood to open the head, and then drew the shot, Roger tried twice to disrupt the head but just missed on each occasion, leaving Bromley victorious.
This afternoon saw the climax of the week-long Jubilee Triples tournament, played at Lindfield since 1962. A fine week's bowling (organised by Chris Reynolds) largely avoided the worst of the week's wet weather, with the Lindfield green drying out and bowling reasonably well despite its parched appearance.
The final (on rink 1) was a high quality game between Dave Dawson's West Hoathly trio, and Andy Michael's Preston triple. Stef Michael at lead found the straighter hand well to put West Hoathly under pressure, but they responded superbly, regularly moving the jack away from the Preston bowls, with a couple of inch-perfect draw shots from Dave Dawson to win crucial ends, and eventually the West Hoathly team were declared winners for 2022.
In the play-off Colin Bailey's Burgess Hill team couldn't quite hang on to Gordon Hall's West Hoathly trio, who came third.
The various leagues that Lindfield participate in have all finished for the season, with the following results:
- Lindfield ladies won Division One of the Nellie Mercer league - congratulations to Stella Sayers and her team.
- We finished 2nd from top of Division One in the Mid-Sussex league, well done to Carol Watson and everyone who played in it.
- We finished 2nd from top of Division One in the Border League, just 3 points behind Horley, well done to Alan Gardiner for running the team.
- We came 3rd from top in the John Spriggs League, thank you Mike Streeter for organising the teams and almost propelling us to first place!
- We participated in the Nicholas Soames league but weren't in any danger of winning it! Thanks to Steve Minter for organising.
For the first time since 2013, Lindfield's men have failed to progress beyond the quarter-finals of any county competition.
Adam Harding and Paul Sandford both made it to the quarters in the singles, only to be beaten by Lee Dickson and Kevin Yeo respectively at Sidley Martlets.
In the triples Phil Taylor had to drop out due to ill health, and was replaced by Alan Gardiner, but along with Peter Page and John Truran they struggled against some high class bowling from Carl Dyer, Ryan Midwinter and Michael Stone on a pushy Popes Mead green.
In the fours at Burgess Hill, the quartet of Adam Harding, Paul Sandford, Ian Watson and Keith Holman had an absorbing and low-scoring game against Darren Anderson's team from Hove & Kingsway. At 10-10 the game could have gone either way, but Darren's team edged ahead and managed to maintain a slender lead in the closing ends, to win 14-16.
In the Tony Allcock (national over-60 mixed double rink) trophy there was better news, as Lindfield won the Sussex area final against the Norfolk club (from Littlehampton) on a neutral green (Henfield), 36-27. The team of Jennie Sandford, Sue Willmott, Paul Sandford and Roger Green won 20-16, while the other rink of Margaret Atkins, Carol Watson, Peter Doughty and Ian Watson won 16-11. Peter Doughty was a late replacement for Keith Holman, who had to drop out due to Covid, so Ian moved to skip and Peter played an excellent game at 3. Many thanks to Henfield for hosting the game. We're now in the last 32 in England, and play a team from Kent at Wadhurst on Monday 1st August.
In the national men's over 55 pairs, Ian Watson and Keith Holman have won 5 games to reach the area final, to be played against Malcolm Mackenzie & partner, from Burgess Hill.
Several of our ladies are through to the semi-finals of the county competitions, to be played at Preston BC on Saturday 30th and Sunday 31st July, click here for the programme.
County competitions update
Area finals have been played in all the main (men's) county competitions, with the following results:
- Adam Harding is through to the singles quarter-finals after clinching a close-fought game against team mate Keith Holman
- Paul Sandford is also through to the singles quarter-finals after beating Uckfield's Phil Soper
- Ian Watson and Keith Holman lost their pairs area final to Buxted's Jason Walter and Alex Paine
- Paul Sandford, Adam Harding, Ian Watson and Keith Holman are through to the Fours quarter-final after a last-end win against Preston
- Phil "The Power" Taylor, Peter Page and John Truran are through to the Triples quarter-final after beating team mates Gacsall, Reynolds and Green by 1 shot in the area final.
In the ladies' county comps:
- Carol Watson has reached the semi-final of the singles, after beating Buxted's Sue Walter 21-16.
- Julie Green and Stella Sayers play each other in the unbadged singles
- Carol Watson is still going in the Champion of Champions
- Jennie Sandford, Carol Watson and Sue Willmott have reached the semi-final of the triples
- Jennie Sandford, Margaret Atkins, Carol Watson and Sue Willmott have reached the semi-final of the fours
- Our double rink team are still going
Best of luck to all our remaining competitors!
Lindfield's fratricidal progress continues in the county competitions, with team mates pitted against each other with such regularity that internal leagues are having to be
postponed to free up rink space.
In the county triples 3rd round reigning champions Adam Harding, Ian Watson and Keith Holman took on Peter Gacsall, Chris Reynolds and Roger Green in an incredibly close game. Holman's trio saw their early 12-2 advantage slip away to a 12-13 deficit on longer jacks, a final scoreline of 13-13 required an extra end, which Roger Green's team just managed to win. They now play the area final against the Lindfield trio skipped by John Truran, with Phil Taylor and Peter Page, who enjoyed unexpected success against last year's losing county finalists from West Hoathly, before comfortably beating Des Foord's Newick trio last week.
In a rare game involving a player from a different club, Keith Holman managed a narrow 21-17 win against Buxted's Jason Walter in the 3rd round of the county singles. Keith now plays team mate Adam Harding in the area final on Tuesday, while in the other area final Paul Sandford (who beat team mate John Truran in the previous round) takes on Uckfield's Phil Soper.
Ian Watson and Keith Holman have reached the area final of the county pairs, and take on Buxted's Jason Walter and Alex Paine on 23rd June.
In the fours it was Lindfield vs Lindfield again, Paul Sandford's team enjoyed a convincing win against Peter Elford's quartet. Sandford and co now travel to Preston for the area final on 24th June.
In the county 2 wood day at Rottingdean Lindfield's five players struggled to get through to the latter stages, with first round exits for Harding and Minter. Peter Colbourne's last-bowl take-out shot secured a win against local player Dave Gardiner after the two players had gone into their last end 13-13, but Peter then came up against Lindfield team mate Alan Gardiner, whose good form narrowly won him that match but Alan then lost by a single shot to West Hoathly's Gordon Hall.
In the Tony Allcock trophy Lindfield are still going, having secured a convincing win against Preston B then a walkover against Crouch, they now face Rottingdean by 26th June.
Bowls Big Weekend
A small army of club members gave up their time to help in the Bowls Big Weekend. We had over 30 people, of all ages, come and have a try at bowling on the Saturday morning in the lovely sunshine, including our local MP Mims Davies joined by Anthea Lea who is our local councillor, who both had a good try at bowling and thoroughly enjoyed it.
There was lots of fun and laughter and some very good potential bowlers, including some juniors.
On Saturday 4th June our ladies take on Polegrove in the second round of the national Top Club competition - do come along and cheer them on.
In other national comps the men had a close win over Preston in the National Double Fours, with new bowler Paul Gorringe making a successful debut in the senior team. They now travel to Crouch, who beat Lindfield in the Top Club 3-2 on 19th May.
In the national Mixed Pairs Sue Willmott and Martin Pelosi were unlucky to be drawn against Lindfield pairing Jennie Sandford and Adam Harding. Sue and Martin had enjoyed a convincing win against West Hoathly in the previous round, and their game against Adam and Jennie went to the last end, with Adam having to fire at the head to secure a narrow 2-shot win. He and Jennie now face another Lindfield pairing in the regional quarter-final!
Other Lindfield teams have been drawn against each other early, Kelvin Booth and Peter Page held on to win 13-12 against Steve Minter and Alan Gardiner in the county pairs, while Peter Colbourne and Steve Noyes enjoyed a competitive game against former winners Ian Watson and Keith Holman, at 9-9 after 10 ends the game was in the balance, but Keith's accuracy told in the closing ends. Ian and Keith had a walkover in the next round and now face Rottingdean in the 3rd round.
In the fours another all-Lindfield affair sees Peter Elford's team take on Paul Sandford's team on 10th June, while Peter Gacsall's team (Pelosi, Lonsdale, Thornely) travel to Barcombe to take on former Lindfield player Dave Richardson.
The men's county singles is the same story - Lindfield against Lindfield - Alan Gardiner enjoyed a good win against Kelvin Booth but then succumbed to some accurate drawing by new signing John Truran in the 2nd round. John struggled against team mate Andy Todd in the Unbadged, but Andy lost the next round to a player from Rottingdean. John now plays reigning club champion Paul Sandford in the singles on 14th June. In the previous round Paul beat team mate Chris Reynolds in a close-fought game. Keith Holman takes on Sussex star Jason Walters at Buxted on the 14th.
In the men's Senior Fours it was another all-Lindfield match, with Ralph Lonsdale, Paul Sandford, Ian Watson and Keith Holman taking on Peter Gacsall, Peter Elford, Andy Todd and Chris Reynolds. Steady leading from Gacsall and some excellent woods from Andy Todd kept them in the hunt until the closing ends, when again Keith's accuracy with weight, and some fine drawing from Sandford, gave their team the win.
New season gets under way
The 2022 season is up and running, with the prolonged spell of dry weather already making the green quicker than usual (for the time of year).
Friendly matches have taken place at Handcross, where Lindfield contrived to lose narrowly on each rink, but the annual trip to Godstone on 1st May resulted in a 7 shot victory thanks to a comfortable 10 shot win by Ian Wilson, Julia Dearing and Peter Page.
The first of a new series of Lindfield member profiles has been published - click here to read all about Chris Reynolds's bowling career. If you'd like your profile to appear on the website, please get in touch with Peter Colbourne.
2022 Dates announced
With just over a month til the outdoor season begins, here are some dates for your diary:
Sat 9th April - Pre-season meetings in the club house (choice of 10-11am or 12-1pm).
Sat 16th April - Green opens.
Mon 18th April - Club drive.
Thu 12th May - New members' induction evening.
27th to 29th May - "Bowls Big Weekend" (details TBC).
29th and 30th Aug - Finals Days.
10th Sep - Reserve Finals Day.