Yearly Archives: 2022

The first full week of Owl Fixtures got underway

The first Wednesday Round Robin took place on 5 October with 14 members taking to the green, each being draw into 7 sets of doubles. First and second place were within 2 points of each other whereas third was some ten points behind second. First place went to Margie Tasker and Gillian Jopson with 35 points, second to Dougie Allan and Sylvia Kennaugh with 33 points and third being Les Brookes and Sid McKnight on 23.
Saturday, 8 October saw four teams take to the green, two teams being the newly formed Sunset Seven and the Nobles Globetrotters.
Sunset Seven got off to a great start winning four out of the six games, whilst the Globetrotters won two games. The closest scoring was a win for the Sunset Sevens with Lynda Wilson holding Stephen Corkill to 17, whilst Grahem Moore of the Globetrotters kept Jeoff Wilson to 17.
Seven Up came a close second by losing the match by 1 point, it was 109 to All But and 108 to Seven Up. The closest games being a win to Seven Up doubles Andy Kennish and Nick Firth who held Bryan Corner and Richie Davies to 17, whilst Willie Corkill from All But had a close battle with Derek Allen but Willie took victory by 1 point.
The Globetrotters then took on Seven Up, with Seven Up almost having a clean sweep but for the double act of Phil Salmon and Sam Colquitt taking a game. The closest wins for Seven Up were that of Derek Allen and Mark Kelly who beat Michael Johnson and Stephen Corkill to 18 points, respectively.
All But then took on Sunset Seven and took a win in four of the games. There were two close games where Celia Joughin took the win for All but holding Jeoff Wilson to 19, while Harry Kelly for Sunset Seven kept Willie Corkill to 19.
Sunset Seven 112 (6), Nobles Globetrotters 95 (2); Seven Up 108 (3), All But 109 (5); Nobles Globetrotters 102 (1), Seven Up 119 (7); All But 123 (6) Sunset Seven 99 (2).
Sunday, 9 October saw again four teams take to the green with one new team being the Odd Bowls.
Parkers took on The Lakers and they took victory in 3 of the six games but victory was to the Lakers on points. The closest games were both winners for the Parkers, Mike Alexander holding Brian Kelly to 20, whilst Jo Smith held James Kelly to 19.
Odd Bowls took on the Castletown Cannons, again the match victory being taken on points which went in favour of the Cannons. The Cannons double act Joy Stephens and Sue Kerruish held David Pease and Les Quayle to 18, whereas Odd Bowls Mark Taylor kept Alan Phair to 20.
The Cannons second game was not as successful as they unfortunately did not win a game given the maximum possible score of 126 to the Parkers. George Peach from the Cannons had a tussle with Mike Thomas but stayed on 20. Mike Alexander from the Parkers also held Alan Phair to 18 points.
The Lakers took victory in four games against Odd Bowls, although the closest scoring game of the match was a win to Odd Bowls. Les Brookes and Stephen Oates teamed together in the dobleas and kept Tracy Moore and Sue Gawne to 19.
Parkers 105 (3), The Lakers 119 (5); Odd Bowls 107 (3), Castletown Cannons 113 (5); Castletown Cannons 88 (0), Parkers 126 (8); Lakers 110 (6), Odd Bowls 91 (2).

Outdoor Winter League 2022-23

The Outdoor Winter League has started with what was fabulous sunny weather for both days with a good turnout of members.
Saturday, 1 October had twenty six members take to the green , which for the first half of the season is on Nobles 2 Green rather than Nobles 3.
There were seven sets of doubles and four sets of triples, the latter using black jacks and the former using yellow.
The doubles winners were Caroline Whitehead and Julian Rothera, who took victory from Brian Colquitt and Cliff Clague who scored 35 points.
The triples victors were Greg Barlow, Joyce Kelly and Harry Kelly who managed to sore 21 in one of the games making them a hard team to beat. They scored a total of 32 points, leaving in second place Alan Phair, James Kelly and Gill Morgan with 26 points.
Sunday, 2 October saw some familiar faces return to the green, with fifteen members showing up for the second round robin. These member played triples using yellow jacks. There was only one point between first and second place but the winners were Michael Johnson, Kevin Firth and Margie Tasker scoring 35 points with second place going to Sid McKnight, Stephen Corkill and Greg Barlow.
League fixtures will begin, weather permitting on Saturday, 8 October.

September CLI Players of the Month

Congratulations to September Canada Life International Award winners:-

Men’s Player of the Month: Peter Jones – Marown

Ladies Player of the Month: Joyce Ogden – Marown

Under 21’s Player of the Month: Toby Hart – South Ramsey

Peter was the obvious choice in the men’s game during September, having joined half way into the season ‘Jonah’ has settled in nicely winning his first Manx Masters at the first time of asking beating the best of the best on his way to picking up the title. In addition to this Jones contributed towards Marown’s success winning a fourth successive Club Team Championship title, whilst clearly strengthening their A Team in the second half of the season in their attempt to wrestle the title back from South Ramsey A. In addition to this Jonah won a Doubles competition with clubmate Glenn Boland at Finch Hill, whilst enjoying further success in the Men’s Doubles in the September Festival with teammate Colin Kelly.

The pick from the Ladies Section this month was a difficult choice with two names in the frame, it was Marown’s Joyce Ogden who edged the vote from the Ladies. Joyce started the month in devastating fashion, with a 21-4 win in the final of the JMS Veterans Shield helping her team on the way to victory as Marown retained the title, with another three single figure wins following. The pre-festival competition held at Castletown turned out to be something of a surprise victory on the day as a space opened up in the draw, with Joyce entering and not having any bowls with her used a set of club bowls. Joyce went on to claim her first win in a Ladies singles open beating some top lady bowlers on the day. This teed Joyce up nicely for the week, with the September Festival taking place Ogden reached the quarter finals in the Tourism, then just lost out 19-21 in the main event at the same stage to the runner up.

Toby was the easy choice in the Under 21 category winning his first Junior Manx Masters, with this being his last opportunity to do so, performing well to beat one of the outstanding Junior bowlers Madison McMullan in the final. Toby also performed well four his club team South Ramsey winning four games, while this is not in September – there will be no player of the month for October it is worth noting that I cannot recall two brothers winning an Open Competition as Toby and older sibling Austin performed brilliantly in the Juan Kelly Cup recently as the pair went on to take their first win in a Doubles competition.

Brothers Are All Hart

Marown Bowling Club hosted the Juan Kelly Cup with the competition now in its sixth year 49 pairs took part just beating last year’s entry of 48. There were some interesting pairings making use of the handicap system which was played over two qualifying nights (Sunday and Monday), with four pairs qualifying each night in order to qualify for the finals night on Wednesday evening.

The format was any combination doubles, played over 15 ends with ends 5, 10 and 15 played as ‘power’ ends with the points scored counting double. The pairs were given a handicap based on their rankings in the Men’s and Ladies game. If scores were tied after 15 ends a one bowl shootout would take place to decide the winner.

There were some high profile casualties on both qualifying nights, in particular on Monday when a host of strong pairings made an early exit.

For finals night a re-draw took place to determine who the pairings would play on the night, with a good mixture of high and low handicaps still in the competition. The excellent floodlights came into good use for the duration of the competition.

Losing quarter finalists were home greeners Glenn Boland and Peter Jones (+2), who lost heavily to Port St Mary pair Jordan Drewett and Nathan Hamilton (+4) 10-23 with the game finishing two ends early as the latter pair could not be caught, while Derek Allen (Port Erin) and Steve Parker (Onchan) had a +4 handicap against Peel pair Tommy McMeiken and George Gadsby who were off +3, with the Peel men winning 18-15. The Port St Mary Husband and Wife pairing of Steve and Mavis Franks (+7) couldn’t get going until end 10 against South Ramsey’s David Bradford and Peter Collister (SCR) as they lost out 14-21. In the last quarter final another South Ramsey pair progressed with brothers Toby and Austin Hart seeing off Peel men Stevie and Dave ‘Barney’ Kelly 16-15, with all to play for on the last end the Hart brothers got the single they needed to score a two to leapfrog their opponents to win the game.

The semi-finals were fairly straightforward for both winning pairs with Drewett and Hamilton booking their place in the final with a 22-14 win over McMeiken and Gadsby, while the Hart’s stepped up a few gears – with the match finely poised at 13-14 against Bradford and Collister after 11 ends, the brothers scored a two, a four a three and a single to finish strongly with a 24-14 win.

The final got underway with the South Ramsey pair (+6) having a slight two chalk advantage over the Port pair (+4) it looked like it could be a close final with both pairs exchanging singles over the first four ends to leave the score at 8-6. On the first power end the Hart’s made their move as they scored a two, which doubled up to a four. From there they scored another four on end seven, followed by a single on end nine, in between conceding three chalks over two ends.

With Drewett and Hamilton chasing the game trailing 9-17, the second power end looked to be going against them as they were lying two down, with Hamilton killing the end no points were scored. After scoring a single on the following end any hopes of a comeback were extinguished as they conceded a single, followed by a four to put the score at 22-10 with just two ends remaining. This would have require a minor miracle to score two maximums just to tie, however end 14 became a dead rubber as Toby and Austin had their bowls well positioned to ensure this didn’t happen as they scored two to take their first win in this competition, with both brothers performing extremely well over both the qualifying night and the finals night, they fully deserved this victory.

At the conclusion of play the presentation was made by Marown Club President Peter Kelly, who thanked Juan Kelly for once again sponsoring the competition, the Ladies for the refreshments over all three nights, everyone who entered, and all those who came to support. The sponsor Juan Kelly was then introduced to present the prizes with £560 paid out.

The proceeds from the kitchen and the raffle from this competition and the Autumn Shield held at Marown in early September resulted in the club raising over £1,300 towards Charity following the loss of three Life Members this year – Bert Winckle, Ian Kissack and Pat Withers with four charities receiving donations – The Parkinson’s Society, Hospice Care, Peel and District Anti-Cancer and Sight Matters (Manx Blind Welfare).

Firth & Moore Reach Final of BCGBA Mixed Pairs

The 2022 BCGBA Mel Evans MBECentenary Mixed Pairs was held on Saturday 1st October at Owley Wood Recreation Club, Barrymore Road, Weaverham.

The first game of the day got underway at 10:00 with Paula Firth (Onchan) and Alan Moore (South Ramsey) facing Amy Ryder and Mark Owen (Shropshire) on the number one green with the IOM pair going into a 15-4 lead, eventually going onto win 21-13.

South Ramsey’s Elaine Moore and Glynn Hargraves were on the number two green, as they faced Warwick and Worcester pair Tracey Baker and Jason Galvin with Elaine and Glynn leading 16-10 and counting for three only for a great last bowl from Galvin to trail the block for two. From there the IOM representatives picked up just two more chalks as they lost 18-21.

Also on the number two green another South Ramsey pair – Jenny Moore and James Teare, they managed to see off the Wales pair of Linda Williams and Ritchie Jamieson 21-12, keeping their opponents to just one double with the rest of the points scored being singles.

In the Last 16 Jenny and James were up against Catherine Lockwood and Peter Hawkes (North Lancs & Fylde) finding themselves in a spot of bother trailing 13-19 after conceding two fours, however they did pick up three trebles. Trailing by one chalk at 19-20 and counting for four, with two bowls easily inside a foot, Lockwood pulled out bowl of the day to win the game 21-20 in a tough to take last end for the South Ramsey pair.

Paula and Alan faced Warwick and Worcester’s Michelle Jones and Ben Harris with the latter pair winning just seven ends to Paula and Alan’s 12 ends. The W&W pair went into a 20-17 lead, with Alan saving game on more than one occasion with his ability to strike, as they managed to pick up a double and two singles to sneak home 21-20 to reach the next round.

At the quarter final stage Firth and Moore were the last IOM representatives left as they faced Abbie-Jo Rhodes and Simon Rhodes from South Yorkshire. Trailing 7-9 the Onchan/South Ramsey pair shifted up a few gears as their opponents scored just one more chalk, scoring two fours, a double and four consecutive singles to see the game out 21-10.

At the semi-final stage Firth and Moore were always in control of the game against another South Yorkshire pair Andrea Ainley and Richard Moore as they booked their place in the final with a solid 21-13 victory.

In the final Firth and Moore faced Staffordshire pair Jordan Picken and Steve Davis who had just seen off the pair that had earlier put Jenny and James out of the competition. In their fifth game of the day they struggled to get going as whilst they kept their opponents down to singles and doubles they found themselves with a 4-17 deficit.

A mini comeback followed as they managed to sneak into double figures as they lost out 10-21, however both should take pride in their performances over the day.

Marown Win Fourth Club Team Championship Title

The Club Team Championship was brought to a conclusion at Nobles Park on Wednesday evening with the semi-finals being played two days earlier on Monday night. The format for the competition – being played for the fourth time was unchanged with four doubles and six singles with 14 bowlers eligible to play. The four teams reaching the semi-final were Marown, Port St Mary, South Ramsey and Onchan.

The first semi-final was held at Castletown, between Marown and Port St Mary, the same team they faced at this stage in 2020 with the Crosby outfit having a much tougher battle than their last clash which they won by 66 chalks, this time round winning by 16 chalks (195-179) proving too strong for the Port team. In terms of games Marown won 7-3, with the lowest score being 13, and five of the matches going to 17 or more. In the singles Nicola Cain caused the biggest upset for Port as she stunned Marown Captain Paul Kelly 21-19, Trevor Quayle won 21-15 against Clare Cooper, while Bernard Thackrah and Robbie Cooil performed well to beat Dean Kipling and Paul Dunn 21-14.

South Ramsey made the trip to Crosby as they took on Onchan in a fairly straightforward win by 45 chalks (189-144). Onchan did manage to win three of the 10 games with Mike Alexander edging home 21-20 against Stefan Kelly, Sue Gawne & Matthew Quirk won 21-13 against Steven Waters and Peter Collister, while Jamie Clague and Mike Thomas won to single figures (21-9) against Fiona Kennish and Glynn Hargraves.

The final got underway with South Ramsey putting out a stronger team in this competition than they have done since the competition was first played, as they looked to take home a clean sweep of the Associations top team prizes for the season, however Marown were favourites to retain the title that they have won for the previous three years the competition has been played.

Marown didn’t disappoint putting in a good performance in the singles games in the first half of the match with captain Paul Kelly gaining his revenge on Gill Dixon following the Mixed Team final last month as he won 21-14, while Rebecca Teare brushed aside Jenny Moore 21-8 on the same green that Teare recently won the IOM Bowls Festival on. Win number three arrived with Clare Cooper winning 21-16 against Toby Hart as the Crosby team opened up a commanding 25 chalk lead. In the doubles Debbie Leece and Paul Dunn extended the lead by another point as they beat Peter Collister and David Bradford 21-20. South Ramsey then picked up their first win of the night with their own 21-20 victory with Glynn Hargraves and James Teare recovering from a 14-19 deficit to sneak home against Brian Kelly and Philippa Taylor.

In the second half of the match Marown knew they just needed to score well in the games, avoiding any heavy defeats to ensure the title was theirs once again. Juan Killip and Karl Parker picked up Marown’s second 21-20 of the night in their favour as they held off Lee Dawson and Steven Waters, while Tony Dugdale fought back from a 3-13 deficit against Peter Jones only to eventually lose out 17-21. Jordan Cain then secured South Ramsey’s second win of the night with a 21-13 victory over Walter McCarthy.

With the last two games on the green Marown had enough points on the board to be safe in the knowledge the title was theirs once again as Bob Clark managed to beat Glenn Boland 21-14, with Clark leading 12-1, Boland dug deep playing a longer mark to get back into the game before losing out. The last match of the night was a good battle between Matthew Keggen and Neil Withers who were up against Elaine Moore and Fiona Kennish with the South Ramsey ladies just losing out 20-21 to the Marown men. The final score on games was 7-3 to Marown, with the all important chalks also going in their favour 194-178 as they won by 16 chalks. The match was well contested throughout with four games going to the wire 21-20, however Marown were deserved winners on the night.

The presentation was made by Association Press Officer Glynn Hargraves who thanked Nobles Bowling Club for hosting the final, providing refreshments to the players and spectators. Marown captain Paul Kelly congratulated his team for their performance, whilst also offering his commiserations to South Ramsey.

Club Team Championship Runners Up 2022 – South Ramsey
Photo: Arnie Withers


The final set of matches in this season’s ladies open age bowling league were played last Wednesday evening. Castletown A consolidated their lead at the top of the table with an impressive 7-2 win away to Ballaugh. Stella Watterson and Kim Foy for Castletown plus Rose Waterworth for Ballaugh all won to single figures with Hilary Kermode for ‘Town’ having a battle with Louise Tebay crossing the line to win 21-19. Second placed South Ramsey also performed well winning 8-1 at home to neighbours Mooragh Park with five of South’s games being won to single figures. Stopping the full house for South was Caroline Parker who won to 17 against Lorraine Moore. Onchan also had a good result away to Castletown B winning 7-2 and dropping only four points. Two winners for Castletown B were Joy Stephens and Sonya Mercer who both won to 19 against Grace Gawne and Libby Andrade. Port St Mary hosted Marown A with the match finishing 5-4 to PSM. Closest game saw Margaret Tasker (PSM) pipping Lil Smith to 20. Douglas were away to Peel coming away with a 5-4 win with mum and daughter Paula and Harley Garrett and Katie Jacobs for Douglas plus Joyce Kelly and Val Allwood for Peel all winning their games to single figures. Marown B were at home to Port Erin with the Crosby ladies winning the match 6-3. Closest game saw Clare Cooper just getting the better of Rita Callister 21-19. The one outstanding match between Marown B home to Onchan carried forward from fixture 19 was played on Friday evening. Onchan won 6-3 with all games bar two going into double figures. Three winners for Marown B were Rebecca Teare, Deborah Leece and Helen Withers who won to 14, 13 and 15 respectively. Finishing the season on top was Castletown A on 3803 points, followed by South Ramsey second on 3596 and Marown A third on 3524. Many congratulations to the Castletown ladies for retaining the title and many congratulations also to Sue Gawne (Onchan) who played exceptionally well all season not losing a game to win the ladies individual merit and to South Ramsey’s Elaine Moore and Jenny Moore who finished in second and third places only one point and three points respectively behind Sue.

This is the final report of the season so I wish everyone well for the winter and hopefully see you all next season.

Locals Perform Well in BCGBA Champion of Champions

The BCGBA Champion of Champions Event returned to the bowls calendar for the first time in three years, with the last time it was held in 2019 the Men’s title was won by Manx Man Colin Kelly at the famous Waterloo Bowling Green in Blackpool at ‘The Wembley of Bowls’ which is sadly no longer. The Men’s competition was held on Saturday at Monk Sports & Social Club in Warrington.

Representing the Isle of Man was South Ramsey’s David Bradford, who qualified in July having won the Manx Championship for a second time. He had the unenviable task of facing Callum Wraight in the first round, with his opponent having qualified through winning the BCGBA Senior Individual Merit for the second time. In truth Wraight could have qualified for this event many times over having won over 20 competitions this season, this in itself showing the task ahead of Bradford.

The Manx Man was a last minute arrival to the venue, having difficulty getting a taxi to the bowling green that morning, however Bradford arrived with a minute to spare before going on in the first round of games. Settling into the game early Bradford opted for a longer length, with Wraight preferring a shorter mark. The game was keenly contested throughout with the score tied at 14-14, then 16-16 only for Bradford to take the initiative and go into a 19-17 lead and then 20-18 to maintain his two point lead, as Bradford made no mistake as he went on to seal a famous 21-18 victory.

In the Last 16 Bradford went on to play Alex Hassall – Midland Masters Merit winner. In this game Hassall become something of a one bowl wonder with 15 singles scored and just one double, while Bradford scored four doubles which was ultimately the difference in a keenly contested game as he went on to win 21-17 to progress to the next round.

At the quarter final stage Bradford was up against Andy Proctor winner of the BCGBA Jack & Jean Isherwood Championship, with Proctor a IOM June Festival winner in 1993 enjoying something of a renaissance of late, as he built up a 10-5 lead over the South Ramsey man, with Bradford doing nothing wrong. With Proctor renowned for his striking ability enjoying considerable success with four hits from four strikes in the early stages of the game. Bradford had to big deep to get back into the game and managed to turn the game around to go into the lead by four points at 16-12. Proctor responded with two singles and two doubles to lead 18-16, only for the pair to exchange singles over three ends to put the score at 18-19. On the next end Bradford was counting for one, however a great last bowl from Proctor somewhat unbelievably made two to win the game 21-18 to end the hopes of Bradford.

Andy Proctor (left) with David Bradford prior to their game.
Inset: One of Proctor’s distinctive bowls which he won the IOM June Festival with in 1993.
Photo: James McGurk

In the semi-finals Proctor faced Chris Kelly winner of The Sandal Classic, with the former having built up a huge lead over his opponent, Kelly fought back to see the game out with a 21-19 win to reach the final. The other semi-final had Lee Kington winner of the Warwick & Worcester Merit have his run ended by IOM June Festival winner James Wilcox.

The final went to the wire with Kelly edging home 21-20 against Wilcox to pick up his first Champion of Champions title.

Ladies Event

On Sunday it was the Ladies turn to impress at the same venue with two local representatives competing, with more South Ramsey players featuring as Elaine Moore – September Isle of Man Tourism Winner took to the green with daughter Jenny Moore – Ladies Manx Champion also qualifying.

Elaine battled well in her game with Emma Tobin (British Parks Merit Winner) before succumbing 18-21 in her first round tie.

Jenny had the tough task of facing one of the top UK bowlers in Alexis Lunn-Gadd (Yorkshire Merit Winner) with Jenny putting in a good performance to win her first round game 21-14, with the final score only telling half the story as Jenny trailed 1-9 before hitting top gear as Lunn-Gadd scored just five more points to Moore’s 20 points from end seven onwards.

In the second round Jenny made a much better start against North Derbyshire Merit winner Janice Wilson with a 21-4 victory, keeping her opponent to four singles throughout the game as she progressed to the next round.

In the quarter final the game was much more evenly contested with a tough battle with Christine Davies winner of the Blackpool Spring Festival. Jenny managed to build up a seven chalk lead over her opponent to sit just one point away from victory at 20-13, however Davies had other ideas fighting back well scoring five singles and a double to tie the score at 20-20. On the deciding end Davies was counting one for game, however Jenny knocked her opponents bowl off to seal a 21-20 win.

At the semi-final stage and in her fourth game of the day Jenny faced Lynsey Gorman winner of the Merseyside Merit and another well known bowler. The game was once again well contested with Gorman eventually going into a four point lead at 14-10 after 20 ends. Jenny hit back to lead 15-14, only for Gorman to recover her four point lead at 19-15. The game looked to be going to the wire and so it proved with Jenny picking up three singles, then conceded a single to trail by two points at 18-20. A good two from Jenny tied the game at 20-20. On the deciding end Gorman played a good first bowl to beat Jenny’s lead, with Moore taking the block off the green to save the game. On the next end Lynsey once again put up a good first bowl to beat Jenny’s lead, which went unbeaten as Jenny ended up on the wrong side of a 21-20 score in this round to narrowly miss out on the final.

In the other semi-final Shannon Kernick winner of the Norden Open Singles managed to see off Lorraine Hirst (Enid Blackburn Trophy winner) with a 21-11 win to reach the final.

In the final the less experienced Kernick, had a tough battle with Gorman, however Kernick prevailed 21-17 to seal the title with a solid performance.

Boland and Jones Win Finale

A good entry of 32 pairs contested the final Open of the season, the any combination pairs competition at Finch Hill for the Douglas Borough Council Challenge Cup.

On a chilly day the trophy was destined to have a new name on it with previous winners Jenny Moore and James Teare competing off – Island.

At the quarter final stage Marown duo Walter McCarthy and Karl Parker staged an impressive comeback from 13-20 down against Port St Mary pair Jordan Drewett and Nathan Hamilton to win.

The match involving Sam Clague (Marown) and Dean Kinley (Peel) against Marown’s Glenn Boland and Peter Jones was an entertaining encounter which saw Glenn and Peter prevail 21-18.

Onchan men Kevin Quirk and Steve Parker always had the measure of Victoria Johnson (Mooragh Park) and Nigel Tebay (Ballaugh) and ran out comfortable winners 21-15. In the game with father and son pairing Colin Kelly and Kevin Kelly (both Marown) a decisive ninth end saw their opponents Steven Waters and Bob Clark (South Ramsey) score four chalks which put them into a comfortable lead which they never relinquished.

In the first semi-final Boland and Jones were always in control against McCarthy and Parker to win 21-10. The second semi-final saw another impressive fight back with Waters and Clark coming back from 10-15 down to run out winners 21-16. The Final proved to be a rather one sided affair with Boland and Jones proving too strong for Waters & Clark to run out winners by a 21-10 score line.

The competition is sponsored by Douglas Corporation and her Worshipful Mayor Ms Janet Thommeny kindly came along to make the presentation. Thanks to the Ladies at Finch Hill for the catering during the afternoon and to all the members who helped out on the day.

Top Titles Head North

The crown green bowls league season came to a conclusion this week as the league winners, promotion battles and bottom teams were settled in all three divisions along with the individual merit winners.

In Canada Life International Division One South Ramsey A proved to be the top team – but only just as they retained the Warburton Trophy after doing what needed to be done in their last game of the 2022 season with no nerves evident in their 2-8 win over Castletown A at the Crofts, to seal a back to back League and Rayner Shield double. South Ramsey were expected to walk the league this season following two good signings over the winter, however they faced some difficulties in the second half of the season following a tough to take 8-2 away defeat to Marown A. That result looked to have put Marown A in the driving seat, however the return of John Kennish to the side after almost four years out of the game gave a huge lift to the team on and more importantly off the green. The team finished three points worse off than 2021 with 170 points.

Marown A finished the season in second place with an expected 1-9 away win over Port Erin A, with Bernie Durcan once again the man preventing a whitewash for his team. The Crosby men will once again be taking a look at where they can improve next season, having got themselves into a position where the league was theirs to lose, a damaging 6-4 away defeat to a struggling Peel B ultimately cost them the league. Marown continued a run that has resulted in them finishing no lower than second place in every season since 1996 as they finished the season seven points better off than 2021, just two points off top spot. They can take heart in their improvement in points this season, were undoubtedly boosted by the signing of Peter Jones who relocated to the Island half way through the season and there are already rumours of a signing from outside the club for next season as they look to wrestle the league title back from South Ramsey.

The individual merit winner went to the wire, it was Marown stalwart Colin Kelly who sealed the accolade as he won 21 games from 22 played, his one and only defeat of the season arrived in the first game at the hands of Nathan Hamilton. Finishing in second place was Onchan’s Matthew Quirk who ended the season with a 20-21 defeat to Dean Kinley as Quirk won 20 games out of 22. Marown Captain Paul Dunn finished in third place with 19 wins from 21 games, followed closely by three South Ramsey players all with 18 wins.

Onchan A had a tough night on Monday losing 3-5 on games at home to Peel A, however they won the aggregate by 15 chalks to draw 5-5 on the night.

Marown B suffered the shock of the night losing 2-8 at home to Port St Mary A, this didn’t stop the Crosby men finishing in fourth spot to confirm my early season prediction, which they achieved fairly ahead of Peel A who were six points off the pace.

Both teams that were promoted last season, Onchan B and Port Erin A finished in the bottom two to confirm an immediate return to Division Two, with the three teams above them Peel B, Castletown A and North Ramsey A never really in danger of being dragged into a relegation battle.

In Division Two runaway league leaders South Ramsey B had no pressure on them going into their last game of the season at home to Castletown B as they could enjoy the night with a 10-0 victory to win the league by a staggering 19 points with 169 points. This bodes well for them in 2023, as they look to ensure they do not become another yo-yo team.

South Ramsey B – Division Two Champions who ended the season in style winning 10-0 at home to Castletown B
Photo: Ben Dugdale

Finishing in second place were Marown C on 150 points, as they finished seven points ahead of Ballaugh A thanks to their 8-2 away win over Noble’s A. It is great to see a team – led by Stephen Rundle start together and come through the leagues, with a little ambition going a long way as they have all improved with a number of their players pushing for a place in their B Team. Bar a major restructure of the divisions next season they will be gaining vital first division experience whilst also competing against their higher ranked teams.

Ballaugh A finished in third place, as they face another season in division two, they may well be looking to bring players into their A Team who will be keen to test themselves in the first division as they look to gain promotion.

Finishing in rock bottom on 66 points were 2021 division three winners Ballaugh B, who like most promoted teams went straight back down. Also finishing in the bottom two were Port St Mary B, who probably struggled to adapt to their temporary home at Breagle Glen as they finished on 69 points despite a 7-3 home win against Douglas B. Bucking the trend of immediate relegation back to the third division were Onchan C, who picked up enough points in their last game of the season as they lost 4-6 at home to a tough South Ramsey C team.

The individual merit went to South Ramsey B player Alan Moore, who managed to finish top of the pile with 18 wins from 21 games played (10 chalks dropped). Finishing in second place was team-mate Tony Dugdale, who led for most of the season before suffering a defeat in the South Ramsey derby to James Evans last week as Dugdale won 18 out of 22 games (14 chalks dropped). Marown man Peter Kelly proved he can still compete with 17 wins from 19 games played as he finished in third place (11 chalks dropped).

In Division Three it was North Ramsey B who made it a clean sweep for the Ramsey teams as they won the Chatel Cup sealing the title with 145 points following their 3-7 win at the Villa. Their cause was undoubtedly helped with five of players having previously played first division bowls now plying their trade in the lower leagues.

North Ramsey B – Division Three Winners at The Villa on Tuesday Evening.
Photo: Lee Christian

Finishing six points behind the league winners were Noble’s B, who had a tough looking and season defining away fixture against Marown D with the hosts needing to win 8-2 to ensure they finished in second place. The match was as well contested as expected, for the home team Richard Bregazzi lost out 17-21 to Alex Hampson, while Alan Gault just fell at the last hurdle 20-21 to Phil Salmon. James Kelly managed to hold off Terry Bates 21-19, while Phil Dunn beat Noel Ash 21-18. Marown D cruelly just missed out on finishing in second place by two points despite winning 6-4 on the night.

Sealing the individual merit was Marown D player Jay Waters with a 21-14 win over Grahem Moore, with Waters safe in the knowledge the merit was already his – with 19 wins from 20 games played (four chalks dropped). Finishing second overall was another young player with Sam Stannard-Duke winning 17 games out of 19 (27 chalks dropped).

It is great to see a healthy number of new and junior bowlers gaining vital experience, with Alex Hampson proving to be the most successful junior bowler in division three with 11 wins out of 20 as he capped off a fine season having impressed for the Junior Island Team back in June.