Canada Life International Manx Championship

John Kennish won his ninth Canada Life International Manx Championship in style with a devastating final display to defeat five times Champion Colin Kelly 21-2 at Nobles number 2 green on Sunday.

I am running out of superlatives to describe Kennish who has been the Islands number one player for what seems like an age, and has a trophy cabinet that contains more silverware than you would find in Wilkins Jewellers, and the best I can come up with is imperious.

He is quite simply imperious. His authoritative, commanding displays particularly in the semi-final and final are unprecedented on our shores and quite simply when he is at his best it seems almost impossible for anyone to match him.

Kennish doesn’t win all the time, others have their day and take nothing away from Kelly who himself is a great multiple champion and is in my opinion without question the second best player we have ever produced however like any supreme champion Kennish just seems to have more days than anyone else and Sunday 22nd May 2016 was another one of those days.

In the final he was in control from the off and with the rubs of the green also going in favour of Kennish there was little Kelly could do as his opponent seemed to eclipse the jack with every lead he sent, forcing him to play running bowls which either found the gap or when he did hit didn’t fall his way.

In the Semi Finals Kennish put in a superb display to see off defending champion David Bradford 21-8 whilst Kelly was also dominant seeing off the challenge of the inform Matthew Keggen by the same score.

In the quarter finals Kelly was made to battle all the way just getting the better of ex home greener Jordan Cain 21-18 after an epic tussle. Kennish was again on his game seeing off North Ramsey’s Steve Parker 21-7, however despite the score line it was a magnificent performance and achievement for Parker to make it this far after only taking up the game a few years ago. Bradford ended the challenge of Port St Mary’s Paul Skelly 21-13 to book his semi-final berth whilst Matthew Keggen beat Onchan teammate Phil Kerruish 21-12 at the same stage.

Thanks go to North Ramsey Bowling Club and Noble Park Bowling Club for hosting the competition, Matthew Keggen and the competition committee for running the competition and Canada life for their continued support and sponsorship.

Looking back at it the weekend was a fantastic showcase of the Islands top bowling talent with 58 players turning up to make their bid for glory hoping that it will be their name etched into the history books, however there was an all too familiar end to the story with Kennish being crowned King once again!

Click here to view the draw and full results from the competition