Monthly Archives: February 2020

G4H wrap up title

Long-time leaders Guns for Hire finally wrapped up the title in the Manx Petroleum sponsored Outdoor Winter Bowling League, but lost their 100 per cent record by the closest of margins on a blustery afternoon.

Just 24 hours earlier Saturday’s fixtures fell foul of the stormy weather, however the drier conditions on Sunday allowed three of the four teams competing finish their campaigns, albeit in far from ideal conditions and a week later than planned. 

After three games of the green from the Bits n Bobs and Parkers clash and the same from the battle between the top two – Parkers were well in control of their situation, whilst second-placed Seven-Up held an advantage of three chalks over G4H. 

Parkers went on to complete their outing with a good points total victory to close the gap on sixth placed Govags and a chance of a finish in the top half of the table. 

Seven-Up meanwhile had a 29-point deficit to claw back if they were to overtake Guns for Hire. 

Even though they won the contest and ended their opponents unbeaten run, the one chalk winning margin was not quite enough to pose a challenge in the later games. 

The contenders still each had a fixture left to play and two questions to be answered – could G4H hold their nerve and would Seven-Up record the maximum score expected and required to maybe cause a last ditch upset. 

Neither of the opposing sides allowed the title challenging pair have an easy passage in the encounters, with BnB taking seven points from Seven-Up and Parkers winning two early games in a 110 to 120 defeat to the ‘new’ champions. 

Both questions were answered with there being no change in the points margin – a difference reflected in the two worst scores for the pair, G4H having a total of 213 from 108 and 105, whilst Seven-Up had an 81 and 103 to make 184 – that gap of 29. 

Results for Sunday, February 16: Bits n Bobs 89 (1), Parkers 117 (5); Guns for Hire 115 (3), Seven-Up 116 (3); Parkers 110 (2), Guns for Hire 120 (4); Seven-Up 119 (5), Bits n Bobs 80 (1). 

This triumph is the tenth success over 13 years for a team that has changed its name on no less than 11 occasions – their first victory came as Generation Gap back in 2008; they won again as Hot Shots and Chancers, but missed out in 2011 – again called Chancers. 

Five more successful seasons followed with the names New Avengers, High Flyers, Incredabowls, Rule Breakers and Mean Machine; they missed out as Unstopabowls in 2017, but bounced back as Jacks Off; before having a poor year, by their standards, to finish fourth – this time called A-Team. 

With five new members in their squad for 2019-20 they took the total number of players over that 13-year period to 35, with Alan Moore being the only player to feature in each team, therefore winning his tenth league title success. 

In comparison runners-up Seven-Up finished fifth back in 2008 and in the 12 pursuing years have not been out of the top four, finishing in that second spot on no less than five occasions. 

Saturday’s postponed games involving Mooragh Lakers, Louie’s Angels, Erin Porters and Castletown Corkers have been re-arranged for Sunday, March 8 and the day before will see a set of fixtures moved from the previous weekend and will feature Castletown Cannons, Outsiders and Govags. 

The latest midweek round robin had an entry of 26 split into two sets of doubles, which were won by Philippa Taylor and Mark Kelly, and Kevin Firth paired with Lil Smith. 

Storm halts fixtures

Just like a number of other events, storm Ciara put paid to any action over the weekend in the Manx Petroleum sponsored Outdoor Winter Bowling League forcing the club into their first postponements of the campaign. 

Saturday’s games have been re-scheduled to a date of the end of the list and will now be played on March 7; whilst Sunday’s programme has been moved just one week to February 16. 

This means that a number of teams have had their season extended a little and this includes table toppers Guns for Hire who have had to wait an extra week for their showdown with second-placed Seven-Up. 

In last week’s report I took a look at the leading nine players in the individual merit battle for the Derek Killey memorial trophy and with the Isle of Man bowls website now back online I can confirm that was list was correct. 

At present 115 different members have competed for one team or another and sitting in tenth position in the standings is Dave Kelly (G4H) with a perfect 18 wins from 18 played, however as he has missed two games, his average from those played by his team shows him on 18.9. 

Bowl Rollers occupy the next two spots, with Jamie Joughin and Lil Smith locked on the same total, with Jamie ahead because his against is lower; these two are being chased very closely for their team merit by Sylvia Kennaugh who is only one chalk behind in 14th overall. 

Another player who has missed games, sits amongst the Rollers trio and that is former double merit winner Kevin Quirk (Seven-Up) who triumphed in 2003 and 2010; completing the top 15 is Bernard Thackrah (Erin Porters), whose team have six fixtures left to play. 

There could be another sting in the tail of this battle with the rumour of players being missing this weekend, then as I pen this there could possibly be storm Dennis to contend with… 

Entries are still open for the club championship, which will take place on Saturday, March 14 and following this on Sunday, March 22 the best versus rest event will take place along with the prize presentations. 

Prior to that, on Wednesday, February 19 a charity round robin will take place, all proceeds from the afternoon will go to Cancer Research UK, Relay for Life IoM, Team Elf. This will start at 1pm and there will be cakes on sale, along with a raffle. 

An entry of 34 enjoyed the midweek session held last Wednesday, with the winners in the triples section being Maureen Hamilton, Doug Allan and Mark Kelly, in second were Rosie Winckle, Tricia Bull and Caroline Corlett, with third spot going to Bernard Thackrah, Peter Kelly and Andy Sykes. 

Doubles was the order of the day in the other group and sneaking home by just one chalk were Philippa Taylor and Bernie McPhee, ahead of Gill Jopson and Sue Gawne; with third position being taken by Steve Parker and Marg Tasker. 

Maximums tally hits 20

League leaders Guns for Hire head into the big showdown this Sunday with second-placed Seven-Up holding a 29 point advantage over their closest rivals in the Manx Petroleum sponsored Outdoor Winter Bowling Club, with the rest of the pack too far back to be in contention for the title.

Sunday’s action provided all the main news last weekend, with G4H taking their winning run to 20 and notching up the campaign’s 20th maximum win along the way.

This session also saw a major shuffle at the top of the individual merit following two defeats for leader Marg Tasker (Louie’s Angels) and a perfect afternoon for third-placed team-mate Matthew Keggen.

The players swopped places in the standings, with Matthew now back on top with an average of 20 and squashed in between these two is Seven-Up’s Mark Kelly on 19.9; Marg is on 19.89 as the top lady, just ahead of Jenny Moore (Outsiders), who is three points behind on 19.72.

Positions five to nine are occupied by Mike Thomas (Parkers), Derek Allen (Seven-Up), Sue Gawne and Steve Parker (Mooragh Lakers); also with six games left to play, Doug Allan (Govags) on an average of 19.

In Saturday’s league action the wind played a big factor for the first hour or so and from a set of three fixtures Mooragh Lakers emerged with two scores that saw them move within 16 points of third-placed Outsiders.

Bowl Rollers meanwhile slipped one place down the standings and are now four chalks adrift of Parkers, whereas Cannons maintained the bragging rights over their Castletown stablemates near the foot of the table.

Results for Saturday, February 1: Mooragh Lakers 116 (4), Castletown Cannons 81 (2); Castletown Cannons 106 (2), Bowl Rollers 117 (4); Bowl Rollers 84 (1), Mooragh Lakers 125 (5).

The first fixture on the list for Sunday finished with the closest outcome over the two days after Louie’s Angels came out on top with an eight point winning margin over Bits n Bobs.

This while high flyers G4H recorded their fifth full-house of games at the expense of basement side Castletown Corkers, who themselves are running out of opportunities to catch their southern rivals.

The winners next took on an Angels outfit containing players who are quite capable of taking points from any team and this proved the case after Matthew Keggen recorded a perfect session – two wins and 42 points for and just the starting 12 against – a rare feat for any player.

The Angels almost snatched another game, just missing out on 20, so with G4H dropping 15 points in this contest, they head into a possible league decider this Sunday against Seven-Up, I say possible because both teams will have one more fixture each to play later that afternoon.

The final result last Sunday saw Bits n Bobs halt a run of nine defeats with a 106 to 94 chalks win over Corkers; this score leaves the southerners 58 points adrift with four left to play, with Bits just above these two in the table.

Results for Sunday, February 2: Louie’s Angels 102 (3), Bits n Bobs 94 (3); Castletown Corkers 69 (0), Guns for Hire 126 (6); Guns for Hire 111 (5), Louie’s Angels 98 (1); Bits n Bobs 106 (4), Castletown Corkers 94 (2).

An entry of just 22 braved the elements at the midweek round robin and in the black jack doubles the winners were Bernard Thackrah and Kevin Firth, ahead of second-placed Paul Callister and Trish Bull.

The other group saw Steve Parker and Peter Corlett take the honours after they edged out Ken Karran and Mark Kelly by just one point.

G4H remain undefeated

There was just one afternoon of league action over the weekend in the Manx Petroleum sponsored Outdoor Winter Bowling Club and it featured leaders Guns for Hire overcoming another big hurdle in their quest to win the title. 

Current champions Outsiders, who at present occupy third spot in the standings, began their Sunday session with the season’s 19th maximum scoreline recorded at the expense of opponents Bits n Bobs. 

This while the league leaders comfortably hit the average needed to retain their advantage over closest rivals Seven-Up when they missed out on a similar total by just one chalk in their clash against sixth-placed Govags. 

Outsiders held a 13 point lead over G4H after the opening three games in the big clash of the day, but the leaders fought back to take the final three and hold onto their unbeaten record by a margin of just two. 

Although they dropped 16 points in this contest, they averaged enough over the two outings to remain on course to win the title even if their nearest challengers were to record maximum scores in their remaining two fixtures – one of which is against G4H. 

Govags meanwhile recovered from their earlier loss to record a 121 to 96 points victory over Bits n Bobs, so remain in sixth spot – 23 ahead of Bowl Rollers. 

Results for Sunday, January 26: Bits n Bobs 79 (0), Outsiders 126 (6); Guns for Hire 125 (5), Govags 98 (1); Outsiders 108 (2), Guns for Hire 110 (4); Govags 121 (5), Bits n Bobs 96 (1). 

There were two round robin sessions held prior to Sunday’s games and in the first one on Wednesday afternoon an entry of 32 was split into two groups. 

From the triples section Peggy Freeman, Doug Allan and Andy Sykes emerged as winners ahead of Carol Kaye, Jenny Moore and Mark Kelly. 

The other gang played doubles, with the triumphant pair being Steve Parker and Elaine Moore, with second spot going to Derek Allen and Terry Bates. 

A few showers of rain didn’t dampen the enthusiasm of the victors in Saturday’s outing, with two trios being separated after a roll up and it was Derek Allen, Steve Parker and Lynda Cadamy who took the honours in front of Ken Karran, Kevin Firth and Alan Moore. 

Merit has a new leader

The main news of the weekend occurred in the individual merit of the Manx Petroleum sponsored Outdoor Winter Bowling League with some of the contenders not available to play and some of them suffering defeats.

2012 winner Marg Tasker (Louie’s Angels) took over at the top of the list for the Derek Killey memorial trophy after two close victories and former leader Kevin Quirk (Seven-Up) was not able to play.

Kevin’s team-mate Mark Kelly moved into second spot ahead of three players who lost a game apiece over the two days – Matthew Keggen (Angels), Jenny Moore (Outsiders) and Mike Thomas (Parkers).

On the team front current champions Outsiders, who are currently third in the table, started Saturday afternoon with victory over fifth-placed Louie’s Angels to extend the margin between them by 19 points.

However, that gap was reduced later in the session after Angels recorded a maximum 126 against basement side Castletown Corkers, whilst Outsiders could only manage 116 against the same opponents.

Results for Saturday, January 18: Outsiders 118 (4), Louie’s Angels 99 (2); Louie’s Angels 126 (6), Castletown Corkers 87 (0); Castletown Corkers 81 (1), Outsiders 116 (5).

The following day saw second-placed Seven-Up move within striking distance of the completion of their programme with only two fixtures left to play, however they slipped further behind the leaders due mainly to a number of their players not being available to play.

First clash on the card saw Castletown Cannons, who sit just above their stablemates, miss out on only their second victory in a five-chalk loss to Parkers.

Bowl Rollers meanwhile inflicted only the third defeat of the campaign on title challengers Seven-Up, the victors may have lost on games, but secured the all-important points win by just two.

The title contenders then got their challenge back on track by scoring the team’s fourth and the campaign’s 18th maximum at the expense of Cannons who now sit 16 points ahead of Corkers.

Rollers won the final battle of the weekend and did enough to move above opponents Parkers on average; they are now on 104.25 compared to Parkers on 104.17.

Results for Sunday, January 19: Castletown Cannons 105 (2), Parkers 110 (4); Bowl Rollers 105 (2), Seven-Up 103 (4); Seven-Up 126 (6), Castletown Cannons 87 (0); Parkers 96 (2), Bowl Rollers 119 (4).

A gang of 21 entered the latest midweek round robin and from one group of triples, Allan Kennaugh, Lil Smith and Peter Kelly emerged as clear winners ahead of Bryan Corner, Derek Allen and David Clucas.

Another round robin is planned for this Saturday afternoon as there are no league fixtures scheduled and entries are now open for the club championship which will be held towards the end of the season.