Monthly Archives: February 2019

All to play for at top

The battle for places really warmed up on Saturday in the Manx Petroleum sponsored Outdoor Winter Bowling League with one of the contenders dropping vital points, whilst another proved they are not settling for fifth spot.

Let’s look at how the weekend’s one set of fixtures went, before I analyse the possible outcomes over the few sessions remaining.

Third placed Seven-Up took on Erin Porters who are sixth and this was a formality last time these two teams met, with a maximum in favour of Sevens and they only allowed their opponents to score 69.

This time the southern outfit almost reached 100 points and managed to take one game, but more importantly five chalks from the title contenders.

Seven-Up lost one of their regular players through illness just 24 hours or so prior to the session, when Derek Clarke withdrew, so once again the team of super-subs came to the rescue.

Louie’s Angels meanwhile had a similar problem, when Rebecca Teare, who was second in merit table, also took ill; this however did not stop Angels from recording their fifth full-house with a comfortable victory over Castletown Corkers – we wish both players a speedy recovery.

Next up Erin Porters got their quest to hold onto a top six spot back on track with success over Corkers, although both teams now have lower averages and are therefore closer to the sides directly behind them.

The final clash saw Angels revenge an earlier in the season heavy defeat against Seven-Up, with the victors dropping only three chalks on this occasion in a five games to one result, whereas the losers finished on a total of 102 and slipped down a place.

Results for Saturday, February 16: Seven-Up 121 (5), Erin Porters 97 (1); Castletown Corkers 74 (0), Louie’s Angels 126 (6); Erin Porters 115 (4), Castletown Corkers 98 (2); Louie’s Angels 123 (5), Seven-Up 102 (1).

With just four sessions remaining the top seven positions are yet to be decided – Outsiders occupy top spot and need to score nine points more than second-placed Mooragh Lakers in their last visit to finish ahead of them.

Next in line is A-Team – they can also still catch the leaders, but if they score 16 chalks less than Outsiders, then it is all over for them as current champions.

Things may be a bit clearer after they all compete in a three-team battle this Saturday – but waiting in the wings are two more ‘outsiders’.

Fourth-placed Seven-Up are still licking their wounds from last weekend and will need the leaders to drop over 40 points to be in with a chance; they now also have Angels just nine chalks behind and waiting for any slip ups.

Previous league winners are holding the top three positions, whilst the next two have yet to finish on that top step.

As for the next two positions in the table, Erin Porters are currently sixth and need to score 208 points or more to hold off Parkers who have played all their games.

Two round robins to catch up with, the first of which had 33 compete in a midweek session; Allan Kennaugh, Marg Tasker and Maureen Hamilton took one triples group, whilst Steph Swift, Carole Kaye and Mark Kelly won the other.

There was also a gathering on Sunday when 17 took part and had Nathan Hamilton partnered by Cliff Clague win one gang, along with Steve Parker, Lil Smith and Tony Hart victorious in the other.

Questions yet to be answered

There are still a lot of questions to be answered over the final three weekends of fixtures in the Manx Petroleum sponsored Outdoor Winter Bowling League, both from a team and individual perspective.

The latest batch of games saw defeats for the league’s top team and leader in the merit, along with three sides bringing their winter experience to a close.

Storm Erik was beginning to subside when leaders Outsiders began the afternoon with a comfortable victory over Govags and they dropped just three chalks along the way.

Next followed the first clash between the top two sides, but things did not start well for Outsiders, as they trailed Mooragh Lakers 42 points to 16 after the first two results on the card.

They dug deep in the remaining four games, to reduce the deficit at the end, to just nine chalks; with the highlight for them being Mike Alexander’s 21-17 win over merit leader, Helen Martin.

So after the opening two fixtures, Lakers had reduced the gap, but they needed to keep the momentum going when Govags made their way back into the action.

The westerners will have been disappointed with their Saturday on Nobles 3 green after they lost out 83 to 120 – well apart from one of their players, following Brian Corner’s victories against two top opponents to see him sit fourth on average in the merit table.

So at the end Lakers had closed the margin to Outsiders by just six chalks, but will that be enough, and has the fairly low scoring encounter given the third and fourth placed contenders a chance of taking the title?

If for instance the four teams score similar to the first time round, in the games they have remaining, things are about to change, but as we know this can be an unpredictable game.

Results for Saturday, February 9: Govags 89 (1), Outsiders 123 (5); Outsiders 100 (4), Mooragh Lakers 109 (2); Mooragh Lakers 120 (5), Govags 83 (1).

Sunday had three of the four participants finishing their league programme for the season, with Parkers going out on a high after they dropped just four chalks.

I think it is fair to say that Parkers and Bowl Rollers have not had a great campaign by their usual standards, however a victorious Parkers recorded a double maximum against their rivals, who had one loser reaching 20.

Southern outfit Castletown Cannons took their winning tally up to four with a 113 to 82 success over basement side Bits n Bobs.

Parkers next brought their winter to an end with a comfortable win over Bits n Bobs and moved up onto an average of 106.5, which is very close to Erin Porters who are just above them in the standings with four to play on 106.8.

Rollers meanwhile completed their league outings in the final encounter when they also took their winning total to four, with success against Cannons.

Results for Sunday, February 10: Castletown Cannons 113 (4), Bits n Bobs 82 (2); Parkers 126 (6), Bowl Rollers 87 (0); Bits n Bobs 75 (1), Parkers 122 (5); Bowl Rollers 117 (4), Castletown Cannons 98 (2).

Three team merit winners are known at this stage, with Terry Moore (Parkers), Lil Smith (Bowl Rollers) and Alan Phair (Castletown Cannons) qualifying for the best versus rest section of the prize presentations afternoon on Sunday, March 24.

With the league schedule up to date, a round robin session will be held this Sunday; whilst a good entry took part in last week’s midweek gathering when 38 players were divided into groups of triples and doubles.

Strongest in the black jacks were Steve Parker, Lil Smith and Steve Crampton; while second was settled by a roll-up in favour of Carol Kaye, Caroline Corlett and Peter Karran who just pipped Rita Callister, Bernie McPhee and Mark Kelly.

The pairs group was a bit closer with second and third also being decided by a roll-up, winners Jackie Elliott and Marg Tasker completed the afternoon ahead of Jeff Wilson and David Clucas, and Pauline Worrall and Peter Kelly fell just short in third.

The club championship will be held on Saturday, March 16, entries for which are now being taken at Nobles 3.

Seven-Up into third

Two positional changes took place after results over the latest two days of action in the Manx Petroleum sponsored Outdoor Winter Bowling League, one of them seeing the nine-time champions slip down to fourth spot.

The playing surface during Saturday’s session was frozen hard in places with the remainder just thawed out enough to leave it damp on top, however things kicked off in glorious sunshine with Seven-Up falling just short of their fourth full-house of the season whilst playing Govags.

Straight back into the fray, the westerners then welcomed third placed A-Team on to the green, but lost out in a close encounter, which saw the victors drop down a place, having let slip a 15-point advantage.

With just one chalk separating them, the two winners went head to head in a clash that saw them both drop valuable points in the battle for the league title.

The fixture ended three-all on games; with Seven-Up doubling their slender lead in the table to two points and in turn recorded their first success against any of the three rivals at the top.

Seven-Up now trail leaders Outsiders by 44 chalks, with four fixtures each left to play and with the top two taking each other this coming weekend, the chasing pair in third and fourth will be keeping a close eye on the outcome.

Results for Saturday, February 2: Seven-Up 124 (4), Govags 102 (2); Govags 102 (2), A-Team 108 (4); A-Team 109 (3), Seven-Up 110 (3).

Sunday’s weather took a turn for the worse, with light rain on top of the frozen green, making conditions a little tricky; however this did not stop Erin Porters from recording their first maximum at the expense of Castletown Cannons.

Also in action were Louie’s Angels who came out on top by a margin of 10 against a Parkers outfit who were directly behind them in the standings and fighting to hold onto sixth spot.

Next up was the biggest clash of the session with seventh-placed Erin Porters recording a great 118 to 84 victory over Parkers to swap places with them and move two points clear on average.

Angels fell just one short of their fifth and the campaign’s 25th maximum when Cannon’s Peter Curtis won his side’s one game of the afternoon and it now looks like the southerners will have to settle for a position below their stablemates Corkers.

Results for Sunday, February 3: Erin Porters 126 (6), Castletown Cannons 80 (0); Louie’s Angels 118 (3), Parkers 108 (3); Parkers 84 (1), Erin Porters 118 (5); Castletown Cannons 85 (1), Louie’s Angels 125 (5).

A good entry of 33 participated in the round robin on a cold Wednesday afternoon and after being split into two groups of triples, the yellow jack winners were Sue Gawne, Bernie McPhee and Tricia Bull, with second going to Jeff Wilson, Alan Phair and Rita Callister.

It was a much closer finish in the black jack gang where Caroline Corlett, Brian Corner and Mark Kelly came out on top just ahead of Ken Karran, Derek Allen and Gill Jopson.

Looking ahead, the club championship will be held on Saturday, March 16, entries for which are now being taken at Nobles No. 3.

Outsiders increase gap

The weather played its part in the latest three sessions planned for the Manx Petroleum sponsored Outdoor Winter League Bowling Club – one cancelled due to a frozen green and another due to rain – but one held in very strong winds.

A cold spell overnight on Tuesday put paid to the midweek round robin and the gathering scheduled for Saturday was a wash out, however Sunday’s league fixtures produced some interesting results.

The group contained the leading two sides – Outsiders and Mooragh Lakers – who were separated on average by less than a point, with current champions A-Team in third spot, waiting in the wings for a slip up.

Castletown Cannons, who are having a battle near the bottom with their stablemates, were first up for Outsiders; whilst it was Parkers against Lakers in a fixture that was perhaps not truly reflected in the final totals.

I am sure Outsiders would have been happy with dropping just three chalks, which left them on an average of 118.1; whereas Lakers were ecstatic with their third maximum of the campaign to close that gap and sit on 117.7.

Cannons or Parkers were not about to let the top duo have things all their own way in the next two fixtures – the southerners winning one game, which more importantly took eight points from Lakers, so they remained on the same average at the end of the day.

Outsiders meanwhile were out to revenge their one and only defeat of the season, but were pushed very hard by opponents Parkers, who although they didn’t win a game, lost on a high total of 109, with their worst loser reaching 16.

Looking back at these same fixtures earlier in the campaign, Cannons also won just two games – one by Sue Peach and the other for husband George; who also won both his outings this time round.

Results for Sunday, January 27: Castletown Cannons 85 (1), Outsiders 123 (5); Parkers 90 (0), Mooragh Lakers 126 (6); Outsiders 126 (6), Parkers 109 (0); Mooragh Lakers 118 (5), Castletown Cannons 79 (1).

After this latest batch of games, Outsiders are top on an average of 118.6 with four fixtures left to play and are followed by Lakers on 117.8; third are A-Team 13 points behind on 116.9 and in fourth spot are Seven-Up, a further 15 chalks adrift on 116, these three all have six to play.

There are some big clashes yet to come over the next six weeks or so, including first versus second – twice, as they have yet to play one another.

Entries are now being taken for the Club Championships, which will be held in March.