T & D Carpet Bowls


» HEMSBY PAIRS VI April 2012











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The 6th annual Hemsby Pairs event was held over the weekend of 27th to 30th April 2012.

As an aside to the main event there was a short Fours tournament played over Friday and Saturday evenings with each team playing 4 games.

The winners were the only team to make it through with 4 wins out of 4, Martin & Marilyn Bennet and Peter & Diane Orrin, while second place went to Alan & Josie Long, John Farrington & Mike Daniels who finished with 3 wins and a draw.

The Pairs
This year's event attracted 47 pairs. Five groups of seven teams and two groups of six played one another to determine the 7 group winners, 7 runners -up and best 2 3rd placed pairs that would go forward to the Knockout Stages.

Group 1
With 2 games played 2 clear leaders had already emerged. Bill & Carole Reeve and Alan & Josie Long had won both of their games and were 2 points clear of 3 teams who had all won one and lost one.

The next round of games had the top 2 teams playing one another and it saw the Reeves beat the Longs to take them clear at the top of the group, while the other 5 teams were all on 2 points.

Bill & Carole took their 4th win to remain out in front by 4 points. They would only need 1 point from their final 2 games to secure the group. Behind them there was going to be an almighty struggle for the runner-up spot which was currently shared by all of 4 teams, Margaret Turner & Rita Daniels, Alan & Josie Long, Mike Daniels & Joe Mew and Ann Van Woerden & Kathy Richardson.

The Reeves run continued into Sunday as they recorded their 5th win and duly won the group. Behind them, a long way behind them, the struggle for the runner-up spot continued, with 2 teams on 5 points and 3 teams on 4 points, and all with a game still to go.

With the group win already in the hands of the Reeves it was all about who was going to be the runner-up. The Longs put themselves in pole position with a win that took them up into second place, but Mike & Joe could still overtake them if they won their last game with at least 12 shots, the only problem was that it was against the Reeves. But they did it, on the last end, sneaking a couple of shots ahead of Alan & Josie in the final standings.

Group 2
The teams of Sheila Cocksedge & Marie Bluett and Neil Tuckey & Michael Cooper won both of their first 2 games and were 2 points clear of the pack at that stage.

However it was only Neil & Michael that were able to keep their winning run going and with 3 games played they were 2 points clear of both Sheila & Marie and Chris & Joy Blythe.

Neil & Michael's 4th win kept them at the top, 2 points clear of the Blythes who were themselves 2 points clear of the rest of the group.

Sunday's opening games saw wins for the top 2 once again, maintaining the gaps from the previous round of games.

The group finished as anticipated as both the top 2 teams won again. Neil & Michael were one of only 2 teams to win all of their games, while Chris & Joy finished on 10 points, fully 4 points clear of the next best teams.

Group 3
Three teams won their first 2 games, Peter & Diane Orrin, Brian & Sheila Foreman and Jane Evans & Mike Walker had all gone undefeated.

The leading group was cut to just 2 teams as the Foremans lost to Jane & Mike, while the Orrins continued to be unbeaten.

Jane & Mike and the Orrins duly won their 4th games and it looked like the group was only going to be settled once the 2 pairs played one another. Meanwhile, lurking just 2 points behind and waiting to pounce were Brian & Sheila Foreman and Eugene & Gillian King.

The first game on Sunday saw the top 2 teams playing one another and the game went the way of Peter & Diane, making them the clear leaders of the group for the first time. Meanwhile the Kings now joined Jane & Mike on 8 points in a tie for second place.

The Orrins finished with another win to top the group with maximum points, while Jane & Mike played the Kings to decide who would be runners-up. And it was the Kings that won to finish second, although Jane & Mike's 8 points and 53 shots were enough for them to make it through as one of the two 3rd placed teams to qualify.

Group 4
Gordon Bloomfield & John Whiting and Janet Squares & Linda Cornell won both of their 2 opening games to hold the joint lead. Meanwhile Tony & Lin Cooke had one one and drawn one and were just one point behind the joint leaders.

Whilst Gordon & John made it 3 wins out of 3 both the previous joint leaders and 3rd placed teams proceeded to lose. This left Gordon & John 2 points clear at the top while Marjorie Bilton & Peter Masters came up to share second with Janet & Linda.

Gordon & John continued with their winning ways, maintaining their 2 point gap. Marjorie & Peter were now in a clear 2nd place, while a further point back the Cookes had risen back up the standings to third.

The next round of games brought a showdown between the top 2 teams. A win for John & Gordon would have won them the group, but as it was Marjorie & Peter came through for a convincing win that brought them into a tie for first place, with the Cookes just 1 point further back in third.

Marjorie & Peter won again to secure first place in the group, but the crunch game was between Gordon & John and the Cookes, whoever won would be runners-up, while the others would be eliminated. And it was Gordon & John who came through for a convincing win to secure second place.

Group 5
Martin & Marilyn Bennet were the clear leaders after 2 games, albeit by just 1 point, having won both games. Close behind them were Ann & Alan Blundell and John & Jean Farrington who had dropped just 1 point each.

The Bennets made it 3 wins out of 3 while the Blundells remained the only other unbeaten team in the group, albeit 2 points behind the leaders, but now 2 points clear of 3rd place.

With the 4th games played it was status quo as the leading two teams both won, while the next best team was on just 4 points.

It was another win for Martin & Marilyn in their 5th game, keeping them out in front and guaranteeing them qualification, while the Blundells were in second, 2 points clear of the next best team.

With the Bennets and Blundells drawing against one another then final positions were set, the Bennets finished on 11 points, while the Blundells lost their last game, finishing on just 7 points, albeit still enough to qualify, just.

Group 6
Ken Drane & Val Game were out on their own after the first couple of games, as the only pair not to have lost a game at this early stage.

Ken and Val continued their run of wins into their 3rd game and remained 2 points clear. The next best teams were now beginning to emerge as Geoff & Margaret Holland and Harold & Patricia Ball were the only teams to take their second wins.

The 4th game saw Ken & Val take their 4th win. This kept them 2 points out in front of the Hollands and the Balls who recorded their 3rd wins.

Val & Ken took their 5th win to guarantee themselves a place in the top 2 while Harold & Patricia also won to take themselves clear of the Hollands who lost.

Before they even played their last game Val & Ken had won the group, which was just as well as they lost their final game. The Balls finished with their 5th win to end up just a few shots behind the group winners. Although the Hollands finished 3rd, their 8 points, along with their shot tally, was enough to see them through as the final qualifiers.

Group 7
After only 2 games Graham & Gay Swan were the only undefeated team in the group. They had won both games where everyone else had lost at least 1 game and were consequently 2 points clear.

However the leaders lost their next game, dragging them back into a 4-way tie for the lead, along with Mike & Judy Easy, Sybil Baldwin & Brenda Reed and Keith Cockings & Mike Rogers.

The leaders thinned a little with the final Saturday games as the Swans lost again. However the other 3 pairs continued their winning ways to each finish the day on 6 points in what at this stage looked as if it was going to be the closest contested group of the event.

The fight for the group win looked as if it was going to be between Keith & Mike and the Easys, both teams were on 8 points with one game to go, while the Swans and Sybil & Brenda were only 2 points behind and waiting to swoop in if the top 2 slipped in their final games.

And in that final set of games the leaders did indeed manage to trip over themselves, both of them recorded losses, but although Sybil & Brenda were able to win, they did not have enough shots to overhaul the other two pairs.

First Round
The 16 qualifiers were seeded according to how well they had done in the Round Robin stages. On the face of it this rewards those who did best by pitting them against the ostensibly weakest teams. But it also provides greater opportunity for upsets.

Keith Cockings & Mike Rogers got off to a great start against Bill & Carole Reeve. They were 7-0 up after only 2 ends and it was a lead which would hold them in good stead. In then end Keith & Mike finished 13-4 up.

Jane Evans & Mike Walker won the first end against Ken Drane & Val Game, but they were behind after 3 ends and Ken & Val were in the lead all the way to the end, winning 8-5 in the end.

Marjorie Bilton & Peter Masters started well against Gordon Bloomfield & John Whiting. They were 3-0 up 2 ends in, although it was level next end. They restored their 3 shot lead next end and promptly lost it on the next. After that Gordon & John took the last 2 ends to finish 8-6 up.

Martin & Marilyn Bennet started slowly against Geoff & Margaret Holland, losing each of the first 3 ends, but it was only by a shot on each. They won the fourth end but lost the fifth and were 4-2 down with 2 ends to go. But the penultimate end was decisive, the Bennets took 4 shots and followed it up with 1 on the last to win 7-4.

The game between Eugene & Gill King and Harold & Patricia Ball swung back and forth all the way through. Whatever the Kings got on one end the Balls matched it on the next. They went into the last end dead level, but it was the Kings who took the end to win 7-6.

Chris & Joy Blythe against Mike & Judy Easy was another close one which could have gone either way, but Mike & Judy were the ones to come through at the end, taking 5 shots in the last 2 ends to seal the victory 10-6.

The reigning champions and second seeds, having won all of their games so far, were Neil Tuckey & Michael Cooper. They were up against Alan & Ann Blundell and finally met their match. They led after 2 ends, but were level on the next and 4 ends in the Blundells were ahead and never lost the lead, finally winning 6-3.

Top seeds were Peter & Diane Orrin, and just to prove, as if we didn't already know it, that once you start the Knockout Rounds, what has gone before counts for nothing, they went 6 down after 3 ends, against Mike Daniels & Joe Mew. But showing their class they pulled back level 2 ends later. However Mike & Joe didn't let this get them down and they came back to win the last 2 ends to finish 12-6 winners.

The top 2 seeds and 5 of the top 7 qualifiers were gone, so it was all bets off and anybody's title for the taking now.

Quarter Finals
Clubmates Mike & Judy Easy and Ken Drane & Val Game came up against one another in a game where neither team held much of an advantage at any stage of the game. Mike & Judy were 2 up after 4 ends, but Ken & Val leveled it on the next end and followed that up with another 2 on the penultimate end. That was enough as Mike & Judy could only get one shot on the last end, losing 6-7.

Eugene & Gill King were only behind to Mike Daniels & Joe Mew after the first end, after that they got up to a 7-4 lead with 2 ends left and whilst Mike & Joe won those last 2 ends, it was only by a shot apeice as Eugene & Gill hung on to win 7-6.

Ann & Alan Blundell were never behind to Gordon Bloomfield & John Whiting. A couple of 3 shot ends saw them out to an eventual 9-3 win.

And it was the same for Keith Cockings & Mike Rogers against Martin & Marilyn Bennet. Keith & Mike were never headed and edged out an advantage which on a lightning fast carpet never really felt safe, although they did enough to take the game 7-3.

As anticipated we were treated to a couple of cracking games,

Alan & Ann Blundell started off behind Keith Cockings & Mike Rogers after the first end, but had the lead an end later and only lost it again when they took the jack off on the 5th end, which left them trailing 5-4. Luckily for them their opponents reciprocated on the next end to give them back the lead. However the result was sealed with 3 excellent woods from Alan on the last to leave Keith & Mike with no alternative but to tray and move the jack which they failed to do. Ann & Alan took 2 shots to win the game 8-5.

Eugene & Gill King had the lead early on against Ken Drane & Val Game, but they were never far ahead and Ken & Val brought it back to all square on the 6th end. Heartbreakingly though, having done all the hard work to draw level the Kings came back at them and took the one shot on the last end to win the game 5-4.

The quality of the bowls thus far gave us every reason to believe we were going to be in for a real treat and so it proved to be as time and time again greatwoods were matched and indeed bettered all the way through the game.

But it was Ann & Alan Blundell who gained the initial advantage, taking the first 3 ends to go 5-0 up. Last year's runners-up Eugene & Gill King came back into the game with 3 on the next end to reduce the deficit to just 2 shots, but that was the one and only end which they won.

The Blundells took each of the last 3 ends to take the game 10-3, leaving the Kings as runners-up once again. But it was not for the want of trying, they had bowled well but the Blundells, and in particular Ann, were outstanding. She said after the game that she had been determined to win, but it takes more than determination, it some great bowling and that was exactly what they produced to win the title.

Click here for the full results.

On a final note we are pleased to say that we raised another £340 for the East Anglia Air Ambulance. A huge thank you to everyone who bought and sold tickets and donated prizes.

30th April 2012

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Our next event will be Hayling Island, June 2012