Still lots to play for

There are still 10 league places up for grabs, along with seven team merit winners to be decided as the Manx Petroleum sponsored Outdoor Winter Bowling Club goes into an extra weekend of games brought on by the recent storms.

Once again, the participants had to endure strong cold winds over both days with the Saturday gang in a race to beat the wet weather arriving late afternoon and this they did with little time to spare.

Unfortunately for them, Castletown Cannons were a player short and as a consequence lost out to Erin Porters by 12 points even though they won four of the six games.

Bowl Rollers then joined in the action needing to maintain their average to stay above first opponents Erin Porters, they went down by a margin of 16 chalks, but also set themselves a manageable target for their final outing.

Rollers then battled the elements and a spirited Cannons team to record a high enough total to hold onto eighth spot, whilst Cannons improved their average a little in the contest at the basement of the table.

Results for Saturday, February 29: Castletown Cannons 102 (4), Erin Porters 114 (2); Erin Porters 108 (4), Bowl Rollers 92 (2); Bowl Rollers 112 (3), Castletown Cannons 96 (3).

All of Sunday’s three teams had targets – fifth placed Louie’s Angels to close the gap to the two above to put the pressure on, seventh placed Govags to improve their average and move back up the table and Corkers to maintain the task of moving out of bottom position.

First up were Angels and Govags, but they both dropped vital points in a fixture that ended in a close victory for the western outfit, who next took on Corkers and dropped just eight in a clear victory.

The final contest of the session saw Angels defeat Corkers by just nine, but once again both dropped valuable chalks in their quests to improve their league places.

Results for Sunday, March 1: Louie’s Angels 105 (3), Govags 106 (3); Govags 118 (4), Castletown Corkers 79 (2); Castletown Corkers 98 (2), Louie’s Angels 109 (4).

With one weekend of re-arranged fixtures remaining the tasks for certain teams are this – Lakers need to score 36 points more than Outsiders; Angels need 165 points to finish above Parkers and not be caught by Govags, who themselves require 203 to pip Parkers to a top half finish.

Elsewhere Porters should be able to remain ahead of Bits n Bobs, whilst at the foot of the table, Corkers trail their stablemates Cannons by 79 – so still lots to play for team-wise between the seven involved.

The top two players, Matthew Keggen and Marg Tasker, both from Angels, vying for the Derek Killey memorial individual merit title won their contests, so going into the final games Matthew can reach of total of 444 and Marg 442, with Seven-Up’s Mark Kelly already finished on 440.

Four other teams also now know their merit winners and for Guns for Hire it is Dave Kelly; for Parkers, Mike Thomas; Bowl Rollers, Sylvia Kennaugh and Bits n Bobs, Franz ten Donkelaar.

Leaders for the remaining sides are Jenny Moore (Outsiders), Steve Parkers (Mooragh Lakers), Doug Allan (Govags), George Peach (Cannons), Dave Faragher (Corkers) and equal on points for Erin Porters are Caroline Whitehead and Bernard Thackrah.

Two big events still to come are the club championship on Saturday, March 14, entries for which are still being taken, and the prize presentation afternoon on Sunday, March 22 when the Best will play the Rest, raffle prizes for which would be very much appreciated.

A good entry of 32 enjoyed the midweek round robin, with the two group winners being Alan Phair, Rita Callister and Dave Faragher in the triples, and in the pairs it was Derek Allen and Kevin Firth.