Dunn & Withers Claim Doubles Championship Title
The Islands premier doubles competition was hosted by Port St Mary Bowling Club on Sunday afternoon. The competition was played 21 up off a handicap of +3 for all competitors. The event was well supported with 33 pairs taking part in a bid to win the title, with the event sponsored by members of the Executive committee this year. With the recent good weather, this played a factor in the green becoming increasingly tricky throughout the afternoon.
From the quarter final stage there would be a new name on the trophy with John Kennish & David Bradford having lost out 18-21 in the last 16 in a fantastic game to Jordan Cain & Bob Clark to suffer their first ever defeat in the competition having won the competition for four consecutive years since its inception. Another notable game in the early rounds was between the juniors Ryan Hargraves (Age 12) & Alex Hampson (Age 11) who took on the experienced pairing of Frank Watson & Mark Kneen with the junior pairing agonisingly losing out 20-21, with Ryan leading well at the front and Alex playing some good length bowls and play throughs all spectators were keenly watching on the young duo during the latter stages of the game.
Losing out at the quarter final stage were the Port St Mary pair Pete Collins & Tom Collins who lost 11-21 to Nathan Hamilton (Castletown) & Tom Kelly (Peel), Marown C Team players Stephen Rundle & Walter McCarthy performed well before losing out 13-21 to father & son pair Dave ‘Barney’ Kelly & Stevie Kelly (Peel). Glenn Boland & Nathan Cooil (Castletown) were well beaten 9-21 by Paul Dunn & Neil Withers (Marown), whilst a fantastic start helped Mike Ashmole (Peel) & Karl Parker (Marown) to get over the line 21-16 against Jordan Cain (Onchan) & Bob Clark (Castletown).
In the semi-finals with the green starting to lose a bit of pace Dunn & Withers made no mistake against Ashmole & Parker claiming their place in the final with a 21-7 win. The second semi-final was more keenly contested with Nathan Hamilton & Tom Kelly taking on Barney & Stevie Kelly with the latter pairing having enough to take a 21-17 win with Barney making a good two on the last end to progress to the final.
In the final there was nothing between the two pairings in the early stages of the game with the score being level on three occasions. In the middle part of the game neither pair was able to get more than two points ahead of the other, with the Peel pair leading 14-12 after 12 ends, before the Marown duo took control winning four consecutive ends scoring doubles to need just one more point to seal the victory at 20-14. The Peel men weren’t done there, battling back taking a single, a double, and another single to trail by just two chalks at 18-20, with Stevie playing a good lead bowl on a tough mark which was beaten by Dunn who played his first bowl six inches to the side of the jack, which the Peel were unable to beat which sealed the title for the Marown pair.
The presentation was made by Association Competition Secretary Matthew Keggen, who thanked Port St Mary Bowling Club for the use of the green and its members for providing helpers throughout the day. Spot prizes were also awarded, with the prize for furthest juniors going to Ryan Hargraves & Alex Hampson. The prize for the furthest pairing with a second division player went to Mike Ashmole (Peel) who was paired with Karl Parker (Marown), whilst Paul Cowley (Douglas) & Steve Gregg (Douglas) received the prize for furthest third division players.