League Season Reaches Half Way Point

In Ellan Vannin Fuels Division One this week vital points were dropped by the top three teams as we reached the halfway point of the season.

League leaders South Ramsey A recorded an 8-2 home win over Douglas A, with the home team missing out on a maximum by just four chalks with Andy Cannell recovering from a 13-18 deficit to run out with a 21-18 win, whilst Shaun Seal trumped that result coming back from 15-20 behind to beat Alan Moore 21-20. For South Ramsey captain Glynn Hargraves led the way with a 21-3 win over Kevin Firth, whilst Peter Collister had to work hard for his 21-17 win over Keith Rise. Despite dropping two points South extended their lead to nine points over the chasing teams.

Second placed Peel A had a tough night down south against Port St Mary A on a green that is proving tough for visiting teams, however the visitors took a 4-6 win. Winning for the visitors were Tom Kelly, who beat Robbie Cooil 21-17, Ste Kelly won 21-13 against Paul Skelly, Gary Smith seems to be finding some form winning 21-10 against Paul Russell, while Tommy McMeiken beat Tom Collins 21-7. For the home team Trevor Quayle beat George Gadsby 21-9, Tim Williams inflicted a third straight league defeat on Peter Greenlees with his 21-10 win, while Wayne Roberts beat Darren Young 21-18, a score matched by Dan McCabe who beat Dave ‘Barney’ Kelly who suffered his fifth league defeat of the season. Peel took the aggregate by eight chalks (131-139).

North Ramsey A welcomed Marown A to Mooragh Park with the visitors taking a 3-7 away win, for a second week running they will have been disappointed not to get a couple more points in the bag with captain Paul Dunn losing out 20-21 to Robert Monk, while Neil Withers lost 19-21 to Allan Callow. John Cannan had a comfortable 21-10 win against Matthew Keggen, whilst Dean Kipling’s return continues to add value to the Crosby men on the green with a 21-4 victory over Lee Christian, also Kipling’s support around the green will no doubt prove crucial in the second half of the season.

Onchan A continue to work their way up the table after a poor start to the season, they won 9-1 at home to bottom team Noble’s A, with Mark Quinn preventing the whitewash with his 21-17 win over Mark Kelly. Stephen Hampson came closest to picking up another point for Noble’s as he scored 17 against Frank Watson. Four of the home wins were to single figures from Jordan Cain, Matthew Quirk, Phil Kerruish and Jamie Clague who was stepping up from the C Team and jumped at the chance to impress.

Peel B pulled off a mini upset with their 7-3 home win over Castletown A as they reminded everyone what they are capable of doing to teams. The ‘real’ Paul Quirk had a fine 21-9 win over Ian Watson, Gordon Corrin recorded a 21-16 victory against Sam Clague and Michael Kavanagh just scraped home 21-20 against Aaron Richardson. Winning for the Town men were the youthful trio of Jordan Drewett who beat Robert Middleton 21-11, Bob Clark who beat Brian Lindsay to single figures, while Nathan Hamilton battled to a 21-18 win against Dougie Allan. The home team took the win by just seven chalks (142-135) with a result that is a massive boost for their survival hopes.

In Division Two South Ramsey B similar to the Ballaugh Teams in Division three, are another team who need to look at their B and C teams to put out a side that is not just capable of going up to division one, but able to stay there comfortably as they suffered a 4-6 away loss to Douglas B, losing the aggregate by just one chalk (133-132). To put the result into context South Ramsey’s lower ranked C Team visited the same team last week and came away with a 2-8 win. Whilst it is a different night and the pace of the green may be different, however the merit table should give an indication as to who should be playing their bowls for the higher ranked side next season. Tony Dugdale leads the individual merit with a perfect 10 games played and won at the half way point.

Onchan B hit top spot despite a tough looking home fixture against South Ramsey C as they managed to take a solid 8-2 victory, thanks to two 21-20 wins from Mike Kelly and Paul Clinton who edged home against Tony Hart and his son Toby Hart respectively.

Port Erin A made the short trip to take on Port St Mary B on a tricky green, with the hosts used to a fast green they would have been hoping to catch the Breagle Glen men out, however the visitors took a hard earned 4-6 win with Derek Allen’s 21-4 victory over Derek Cain helping his team to take the aggregate by 12 chalks (136-148).

Castletown B didn’t have the best of results with their 6-4 home win over Peel C. For the visitors Ian Pendlebury and Jeff Wilson both won 21-19 against Derek Lewney and Ron Williams respectively, whilst Collin Holland made the difference for the Town men with a ruthless 21-3 win over Kevin Mort, as the home team took the aggregate by 13 chalks (148-135).

Finch Hill A slumped to a second successive 3-7 defeat, this time at home to the impressive Marown C, who I am sure will have a few players knocking on the door to get into the B Team next season, which would involve taking the next step up to the first division. Jamie Joughin is performing particularly well with nine wins from 10 games played, while team mate Walter McCarthy is hot on his heels with eight wins from nine games played. Marown sit in a comfortable seventh place, will no doubt be looking at the teams above them rather than below them as they head into the second half of the season.

In Division Three Onchan C recorded a 0-10 away win over Marown D, with the result putting them into top spot on 71 points. A point further back on Onchan are Ballaugh B who had a good 3-7 away win over South Ramsey D.

In third place with 64 points Port Erin B had a tough home game against Castletown C with the Breagle Glen men taking a 6-4 win, while Ballaugh C also have 64 points at the half way point after their 7-3 home win over Noble’s B.

Peel D rounded off the fixtures with a 7-3 home win over Douglas D. For the home team Andrew Cover and Andy Jackson both won 21-4 against John Harrison and Ashley Halsall respectively, while the visitors recorded two impressive wins of their own with John Ferguson beating Charlie McMeiken 21-3, while Nick Firth won 21-5 against Owen Crompton.

Wednesday night had the quarter final stages of the Rayner Shield take place with South Ramsey B hosting fellow division two team Castletown B on an extremely tricky green. The match was high scoring with the worst losses being to 16 by both teams. The Castletown team is packed with unbelievable experience and managed to draw 4-4 to ensure the result went down to chalks, with the Town men nicking the win by five chalks (152-157) to progress to the semi-finals. For the visitors Mike Hargraves and Derek Lewney both won 21-18, with George Peach and Ron Williams winning slightly more comfortably with 21-16 wins. For the home team Tony Dugdale and Ian Moore scraped home 21-20 against Juan Kermode and Peter Oates respectively, while Ben Dugdale beat Collin Holland 21-17 with Austin Hart taking the kitty after his 21-16 win over George Foy.

Marown A had their second visit of the week to Mooragh Park to take on North Ramsey A, this time taking a 2-6 away win with four of the wins to single figures from Juan Killip, Neil Withers, Paul Dunn and Matthew Keggen. Robert Monk and Allan Callow both won their second game of the week against the Marown men, this time more comfortably with Monk beating Phil Kelly 21-6 and Callow inflicting a 21-12 defeat on Dean Kipling.

South Ramsey A had what looked to be a comfortable 2-6 away win over Castletown A, however this was anything but the case after the first four games. For Castletown Aaron Richardson beat Chas Grills 21-7, with Nathan Hamilton seeing off James Teare 21-8. David Bradford responded with a good performance to win 21-14 against Bob Clark, while Stefan Kelly had to dig in at 18-20 behind against Dean Kinley to win 21-20, with the result taking the wind out of the Town men’s sails. In the second half South Ramsey won all four games, with two single figure wins of their own from Peter Collister who beat Ian Watson 21-6 and Dave ‘Dido’ Kelly who beat Sam Clague 21-8.  

Peel A despite missing two regulars managed to progress to the next round with a solid 5-3 home win over Douglas A with none of the games looking like they could have gone the other way. Dave ‘Barney’ Kelly suffered a second defeat of the week this time at the hands of Jimmy Sansom who won 21-18. One of the men to step in for the A Team was Tony Carroon who beat Andy Cannell 21-15 with Cannell being in fine form so far this season.

In the Rayner Plate three quarter final fixtures were played on Wednesday evening with Noble’s B (+70) well beaten at home to Ballaugh C (+66) by 43 chalks (186-229).

Third division side Onchan C (+48) were at home and they couldn’t hold on to their 33 start against first division side Port St Mary A (+15) as they lost by 26 chalks, however Kelvin McNicholl was their only winner with his 21-14 victory over Paul Russell.

The closest match of the night was between Marown B (+9) who hosted Ballaugh B (+60) with the Crosby men having to give a 51 start to the visitors on the handicap, they managed to do this by just two chalks (168-166) thanks in part to three single figure wins from John Kelly, Brian Kelly and Glenn Boland to make sure they progressed to the next round. Winning for the third division team were Mike Buckeridge who beat Karl Parker 21-20, while John Bolton performed impressively to see off Bobby Thorne 21-13.

The remaining fixture between Marown C (+27) and Port St Mary B (+54) will be held on Wednesday 28th July at Crosby.