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.