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Ellan Vannin Fuels Continue Sponsorship

The IOM Crown Green Bowling Association (IOMCCGBA) is pleased to announce continued support from Ellan Vannin Fuels (EVF) for the third consecutive year.  With a key focus on the development of the sport, Andy Sweetman, Commercial Sales & Marketing Manager at EVF, has been instrumental in helping create additional community events including three island wide junior events which will follow on from the Manx Youth Games. Additionally we will be adding the first EVF Fun day where there will be an open invite to all including those wanting to try bowls for the first time.

The IOMCCGBA has focused their most recent development plan around ‘inclusivity’, with club members aged from 5 up to over 100 it’s a sport that can appeal to the majority of the population. The sponsorship from EVF has already enabled the purchase of some key equipment which will help support people with disabilities to be able to continue playing or help others start out in bowls. Over the coming months we’ll be looking at other ways to offer people the chance to have fun playing bowls.

EVF will continue to be the main sponsor for the Men’s three leagues, which are as strongly supported as ever with new teams coming into the set up such a Noble’s C this season. EVF will continue to support the ever popular Mixed Team Championship, which bring the best players from across the leagues head to head in a knockout competition. Finally and the flagship event the Ellan Vannin Fuels Junior Championship will see the under 18’s take up the challenge later in the season.

Marown ‘Mix’ Things Up

The Ellan Vannin Fuels Mixed League was brought to a conclusion on Thursday evening.

The competition commenced in early May, with 14 teams entering the competition, the teams were split into four groups playing each team in their group home and away, earning two points for a win on chalks, one for a draw. The winners with the most points from each group then qualified for the semi-finals.

The four group winners were South Ramsey A, Port St Mary A, Marown A, and Onchan A. The draw for the semi-finals put South Ramsey A v Marown A and Port St Mary A v Onchan A. The semi-final fixtures were held on neutral greens. Last year’s winners South Ramsey were disposed of comfortably on Noble’s one by Marown, who had a convincing win by 39 points. The other semi-final was a lot closer with Port St Mary booking their place in the final winning by 10 points to book their place in the final.

The final was held on a fantastic Peel green, who were able to show off their new floodlights, against the backdrop of a stunning sunset.

The final got underway with Matthew Keggen first off for Marown, with a 21-18 win over Paul Skelly in a good quality and entertaining game to watch. Second game off was Phil Kelly who overcame the strong challenge of Chris Price to win 21-14 to extend Marown’s lead to 10 chalks. The third game off was Dan McCabe who had a comfortable 21-12 win over Mary Alderson, to reduce the deficit to one chalk for Port St Mary. This was swiftly followed by Neil Withers who won 21-8 defeating Margaret Tasker to extend Marown’s lead to 14 chalks. The last game of the first blocks on the green went to the wire, with Wayne Roberts just getting home with a 21-20 victory over Philippa Taylor, reducing the deficit to 13 chalks.

The second set of games all became vital, with Jayne Kneen leading 15-6 over Paul Dunn, with Dunn having to dig deep to get back into the game, however Kneen managed to get over the line with a 21-15 win to reduce the deficit to seven points for Port St Mary. Ewan Cooil put in a good performance for his team to turn the match on its head with a 21-5 win over Shirley Whelan to swing the match in favour of Port St Mary for the first time on the night by nine chalks. In the penultimate game, it was a blockbuster of a game with the men currently sat first and second in the division one merit facing off. After a slow start Colin Kelly built a commanding 15-6 lead over Trevor Quayle, with Kelly finishing the game off 21-13 to reduce the deficit to one chalk for Marown. At this point the last game of the evening was finely balanced between Lil Smith and Patricia Bull, with the match score being 4-4 on games only a win for Marown’s Lil Smith would do. The game could so easily have gone either way, however Smith wasn’t to be denied and became the hero of the night for her team, getting over the line 21-19 to secure a win by one chalk for Marown, who in doing so secured their first Mixed League title and are the only fifth team to take the title since its inception in 2005.

At the conclusion of play after what was a thrilling final, the presentation was made by the President of the Men’s Association Clare Cooper, who congratulated Marown on their win, thanked the sponsors Ellan Vannin Fuels for their continued support of the competition, Peel for hosting the final, and the spectators who came to support.

Back: Paul Skelly, Ewan Cooil, Dan McCabe, Wayne Roberts, Trevor Quayle
Front: Trish Bull, Margret Tasker, Jayne Kneen, Chris Price

A beautiful sunset to go with the high quality action at the final of the Mixed Team competition. Photo taken by Gary Weightman

All To Play For

We’re heading into the final of week of the summer bowls season.  It seems to have been a great success extending the season through September with clubs and players able to enjoy more bowling before the weather turns for winter.

There is still plenty to play for in the Ellan Vannin Fuels sponsored Men’s Leagues with Division and Merit titles up for grabs.

Starting with division one current champions South Ramsey A look to have done enough to secure back to back titles holding a comfortable 12 point lead over Marown A.

The battle at the bottom of division one rages on with Castletown B throwing Ballaugh A and Douglas B back into the relegation battle following their 8-2 win over Douglas B last week.

At the bottom Port Erin A sit on 53 points, Castletown B 59, Ballaugh A 60 and Douglas B 64.

Douglas B look safe on those points but they have played a game more than their relegation rivals and sit out on Wednesday.  It will be season defining game when they make the trip up north to face South Ramsey B on Monday knowing they need to pick up points to distance themselves further.

Port Erin A who are rooted to the bottom of the league have two home games this week, first on Monday against fellow relegation candidates Castletown B and South Ramsey B on Wednesday.

Ballaugh A collected an important two points when they took the aggregate in a 6-4 win over Port Erin A last week. With a tough home match against Marown A followed by Wednesdays away trip to Castletown A they will have their work cut out to stay in the top flight, which they have been a part of since winning the division two league in 2008.

Castletown B who face Port Erin A on Monday then go to Marown A who have only dropped six points out of the available 50 in their last five home matches.  Their Monday night encounter with Port Erin A could be the make or break game for the Balley Chashtal Men who were promoted only last season.

Division two and three have only one game remaining which are being played Monday or Tuesday night.

Marown B have already confirmed themselves as Champions as Onchan B had to bring their match forward to Friday and required a 10-0 win to have any hope of winning the league.  They could only manage a 8-2 win over their C team confirming Marown B as league winners.

At the bottom of the table Douglas C who have struggled this season will finish bottom with Onchan C finishing above them.

It has been tight at the top of Division three for most of the season with Marown C, Peel Sunset C and Ballaugh C exchanging blows and places along the way.  Marown C have fallen off the pace but should they hang on to third place it would be a great achievement in only their second season of bowls.

This leaves two teams Ballaugh C 126 points and Peel Sunset C 124 points.  Incredibly the two teams meet on Tuesday at Sunset City which will provide a fantastic backdrop to the climax of division three.

In the League Merits.  Trevor Quayle has been top of the division one merit for virtually the entire season having lost only one game 21-18.  Chasing him are Colin Kelly, David Bradford and Neil Withers who could all still win the merit with two games to play.

Steve Crampton has already confirmed himself as division two merit winner with Kerry ‘Bod’ Boland runner up.

The division three merit has four players tied on 16 wins with chalks dropped separating them.  Dave Smith, Paul Quirk, Arthur Moore and Ian Moore will all await each others results to find out which one has grabbed the merit.

Good luck to all the teams and players for the final weeks bowling.

South Ramsey Win 7th Mixed Title

South Ramsey retained the Ellan Vannin Fuels Mixed Team Championship with a convincing 182-127 (8-1) win over Nobles.

South have dominated the Mixed Team competition since 2008 notching up their 7th title tonight.

The Mens Association would like to pass their thanks to the sponsors Ellan Vannin Fuels, Finch Hill, Nobles & Douglas for the use of their green and the club members who have been on hand to assist on the night.


Marown Lead With South Ramsey Showdown Looming

Marown A took advantage of South Ramsey A not playing last week to move into top spot of Ellan Vannin Fuels Men’s league division one.

The Crosby boys put in a strong performance to beat North Ramsey A and move seven points clear of their closest rivals. In truth South will be favourites to overturn this deficit when Marown sit out so if Neil Withers charges want to put the pressure on really set alight their championship aspirations their aim should be simple.

They must win tonight and either equal or better the score of the Ballure side and follow this up by beating them when they face off next week so that they give themselves at least ten points advantage, which they will aim to maintain and hold going into their own break. If they can do this they will guarantee themselves top spot with only three games remaining.

This is easier said than done however and the lads from Ramsey will be planning on doing the exact opposite and eroding their lead at every single opportunity to put themselves back on top and in pole position for their first Division One League title.

Champions Onchan A had a decent run out beating a battling Finch Hill A side 8-2 to all but guarantee themselves third place. I think realistically their defence of their title is over now, but you just never know. With only nine games left and eleven points to make up it will be a tall task for anyone, even a team with championship pedigree such as theirs.

Third placed Port St Mary A didn’t have things their own way against a rejuvenated Nobles A side who are clawing themselves out of the relegation zone. Port won 6-4, but only just, after tying on games and taking the bonus aggregate points by just seven chalks.

Douglas A have finally started their engines. Many fancied the Villa Men to be much closer to the top of the table and at least challenging for third place however some lacklustre results has seen them close to the teams below them than those above. They managed to put this behind them in spectacular fashion last week with a magnificent 10-0 maximum win away at South Ramsey B. With the Rayner Shield final only a few weeks away they will be delighted to at last find some form.

Ballaugh A are making their own bid for survival and will be ecstatic with a brilliant 7-3 away win over Douglas B. They have two home games coming up and with Nobles having two tricky away fixtures in the same period will be hoping to capitalise and make back the four points they trail by.

Castletown A made it three wins on the spin as they just got the better of local rivals Port Erin A 6-4. This should give them confidence as they go into the hardest away fixture of the year as they travel to South Ramsey A this week.

Second Division leaders Peel A failed to take the aggregate points for only the second time this season as despite winning on games they lost on overall points to draw 5-5 away at Port St Mary B.

Castletown B took full advantage of their rivals slip up winning 9-1 away at North Ramsey B to close in to just seven points off the lead.

Peel B put in a strong performance to leapfrog Marown B into third place beating Brian Kelly’s charges 7-3 in the sunset city. Both of these teams have an outside chance of promotion but they will need to start closing the gap now if they want to turn chance into reality.

Douglas C are still sitting pretty on the perch of Division Three after a decent outing at Nobles C where they won 7-3.

Nearest rivals Port Erin B managed to gain one point back as they picked up a good 8-2 home win over Castletown D.

It is Douglas’ turn to rest this week and port will be hoping to get at least eight points to hit the top and put the pressure on Douglas when they take to the green again next week. Realistically thought I think Douglas are too strong and that even a maximum for Port might not be enough but you never know points on the board are better than those that teams should get on paper.

Tight At The Top

Its getting tight at the top of Ellan Vannin Fuels Mens league division one with South Ramsey A’s lead at the top being cut to just two points by chasers Marown A.

South had the tricky task of travelling to the Villa Marina to take on the Rayner Shield Final opponents Douglas A and will be delighted to have left with a 7-3 victory which pushes them through the one hundred point barrier as they are now on 106.

Marown A entertained Ballaugh A and a strong 9-1 victory propels them to 104, just two points behind the leaders. They will hope to keep the gap at least static this week, however they travel to Finch Hill who are capable of surprising a few people on their own patch.

Champions Onchan A are finding themselves in the no mans land of third place nine points behind second place and eleven ahead of fourth placed Port St Mary A. They will see a 9-1 win over Douglas B as a good result though and will keep trying to chip away at the gap.

Port have now found their feet and a battling 7-3 win away at South Ramsey B cements their fourth position.

Castletown A are an a charge and have flown up the table thanks to their 10-0 whitewash of Finch Hill A. This is a devastating performance from the men from the Crofts and this will give them some momentum to take into their eagerly anticipated clash with North Ramsey A.

In the only other match of the division Nobles A picked up a much needed 7-3 win over Port Erin A to keep their hopes of top flight survival alive.

Second Division Leaders Peel A still flying high after an 8-2 win over their B team sees them move ten points clear at the top. This result sees the Govag second dtring drop to third in the table.

Castletown B are trying desperately to chase them down in second place however they had to settle for a 5-5 draw at Ballaugh B after winning 5-3 on games but narrowly losing out by just five aggregate points.

Port St Mary B and MarrownB are locked on 73 points each after two strong wins, 8-2 and 9-1 respectively, has really kick started their campaigns. It is not beyond the realms of possibility that one of these teams could earn promotion if they can find top hear for the remainder of the season.

Douglas C continue to occupy top spot in division three and another solid away win 7-3 at Finch Hill B will do their title credentials no harm at all.

Port Erin B managed to close the gap ever so slightly to nine points after they won 8-2 away at Port St Mary D.

South Top At Half Way

South Ramsey A defeated Port Erin A 8-2 last week ensuring they top Ellan Vannin Fuels Men’s Division one at the half way stage.

As the domestic league scene now takes a week out, with the Island hosting the June Bowls Festival, South will be delighted with how they have performed so far this season winning all 12 of their matches to head Marown by four points at the turn.

Their talisman John Kennish also leads the way at the top of the individual merit with team mate Dave ‘Dido’ Kelly hot on his heals to add to what has been a brilliant start for the Ramsey men. They were most peoples tip for the title before a bowl was played and they are certainly living up to their billing as the ones to beat.

Marown A are course and distance men and are still very much in the hunt, knowing that a big result against South when they play each other would be enough to cancel out the points differential. They played South Ramsey B last time out and with an 8-2 win of their own kept the point’s difference static.

Defending champions Onchan A are third but trail the leaders by thirteen points, after a good 7-3 win away to Castletown A, which may be a bridge too far.

Realistically they need a near perfect second half to close the cap and mount a serious title challenge, and I am not sure they have enough in the tank to do it. That said they know how to win though, and if they can get themselves there or there about approaching the closing stages you just never know.

Port St Mary A seem to have settled into fourth spot now and will have their sights firmly set on Onchan who are 9 points ahead of them, and results like their 8-2 win over North Ramsey will do them no harm at all.

As the division starts to take shape it’s the bottom that proves equally as interesting as the top. Ballaugh A occupy the foot of the table after narrowly losing out 4-6 away from home to second bottom Nobles A. Both these teams have improved dramatically in recent weeks and they will be hoping to build on their first half results as they fight for their first division lives.

Finch Hill A are third bottom, four points ahead of Nobles, and will be delighted to have picked up four points in the last match at the Villa against Douglas A narrowly losing out 6-4 after tying on games.

Peel A remain at the summit of Division Two however they were made to fight all the way to the end last time out at Ballaugh A winning 6-4 thanks to the aggregate points.

Castletown B are second, seven points behind the leaders, and will be delighted to have left Port St Mary C with a 7-3 win.

Peel B put in a great performance to beat Noble B 8-2 and move within one point of Town. This will be a remarkable turn around for the club if they can get both of their teams in the top two spots and back into division one.

Peel C aren’t having the same good fortunes and are bottom trailing second bottom team Ballaugh C by seven points. North Ramsey B are only one point better off in tenth place.

Division Three leaders Douglas C put in a really strong showing at home to beat new boys Marown C 9-1 and extend their lead at the top to ten points.

Port Erin B are still in second place and should be happy with a good 6-4 win away from home at Finch Hill B.

South Ramsey Top Ellan Vannin Division One

South Ramsey A top Ellan Vannin fuels Men’s league division one after a magnificent maximum result in the derby against their talented B team.

The 10-0 result sees the South first string lead Marown A by four points with just one more game to go before we enter the second half of the season they have a home draw against Port Erin A this week and will be hoping for another maximum to extent their lead at the top.

Marown A went down 6-4 away at third placed Onchan A. It was never going to be easy for the Crosby men travelling to the champion’s lair however they will be disappointed to not have sealed the win. They have the tricky task of entertaining South Ramsey B this week and will need to be on their game to win big.

This result could be the turning point for the champions as they look to reel in the top two. They will need to start doing it with every bowl though and can’t afford any slip ups as they are already twelve points off the pace. They have a tough test away at Castletown A and will need to be firing on all cylinders to leave with the big win they desperately need.

Town A could be a wounded animal looking to strike back after they suffered a surprise 7-3 defeat away at Douglas B last week. The villa second string rest this week and are already at the half way stage and will be delighted to have 53 points on the board already.

Port St Mary A picked up a good 8-2 win over Port Erin A to cement their position in fourth place. They have a difficult home draw this week against sixth place North Ramsey A and will do well to win. North have had a solid start to the season and narrowly lost out last week 4-6 to fifth placed Douglas A after drawing on games.

Douglas haven’t really delivered this season. They have a star studded line up but are yet to all perform on the same night. Apart from a great 8-2 win over Port St Mary A their results have been disappointing and they will be hoping to rectify this tonight when they take on Finch Hill A.

Finch are just above the relegation zone and will be hoping to keep things this way although bottom side Nobles A put in a barnstorming performance to beat them 7-3 last time out and drag them into the relegation dogfight.

Nobles A have a massive fixture this week as they take on second bottom team Ballaugh A at home. If they can replicate their performance from last week and Finch struggle at the Villa they may not only move of the bottom but could find themselves in the safety zone for the first time this season.

Second division leaders Peel A put in another strong performance as they beat Port St Mary C 9-1 in the Sunset City to move eight points clear at the top. Castletown B picked up their own 9-1 over Onchan B to keep the pressure on in second place.

Peel B also secured a 9-1 win over their C team to move into third only 2 points behind Castltown. These three teams now have a gap building between them and the chasing pack and if they continue to perform this well it will be a three horse race for the two promotion places.

Douglas C are doing their utmost to win Division Three and remain out in front thanks to a very impressive 8-2 win away at South Ramsey C last time out. They have the tough task of taking on new boys Marown C this week and another win will do their championship credentials no harm at all.

Marown on the March

Marown A continued where they left off in Ellan Vannin Fuels Division One with another breathtaking 10-0 maximum, this time at the expense of Castletown A.

This is their fourth maximum out of only ten games and really does throw the gauntlet down to their rival and set their stall out for the rest of the season. The Crosby side travel to third placed Onchan A next time out, when play resumes in TT week, and they will be hoping to continue in this rich vein of form to remain in pole position.

Second placed South Ramsey A are still very much in touch after a strong 8-2 away from home against North Ramsey A leaves them just two point off the pace. They too have a tricky encounter next time out as they face their own talented B team in an interclub derby, however they will be hoping that the stars align to see them close the deficit on Marown.

It was Onchan’s turn to sit out last week and they now find themselves ten points adrift of the leaders. If they want to mount a serious defence of their title now is the time and they will need to get back on track against Marown next week.

Port St Mary A have now slipped into rhythm and are in fourth place, where most people expect them to finish, and a strong 8-2 win away from home over Finch Hill A has done their points tally no harm at all.

Fifth place Douglas A travelled to Ballaugh A where they picked up a 7-3 victory. If they want to chase down any of the teams above them they need to start winning bigger as although they have won seven of their ten games they have by far the lowest games for tally of any of the top five.

South Ramsey B showed once again why they are a team no to be taken lightly this term with another strong showing to beat Port Erin A 7-3.

Douglas B also continued with a good account of themselves picking up another valuable home win as they toppled Nobles A 7-3.

Peel A are the cream of the crop in Division Two and another impressive display, as they swept aside Port St Mary C 9-1, will do nothing but enhance their title credentials.

Second placed Castletown B kept the pressure on the leaders as they matched their result with their own strong 9-1 showing over Onchan B, however they trail Peel by eight points.

The Govags second string have now joined the party and a 9-1 win for Peel B over their own C team sees them move into third place just two points behind Town.

Port St Mary B are in fourth after a hard fought 7-3 win against North Ramsey B, to keep their hopes of promotion very much alive.

Douglas C are looking the most likely to win Division Three after a very strong 8-2 victory away at South Ramsey C sees them move seven points clear at the top.

Port Erin B continue to be their closest rivals after a 7-3 win over South Ramsey D sees them cement the work they have already put in.

Congratulations to new boys Marown C on their first away win of the season and what a win as they put in a scintillating performance to beat Finch Hill B 9-1. They are currently mid table but more results like this would certainly see that change.

Tight At The Top

Things are hotting up at the top of Ellan Vannin Fuels Mens League Division One with the top three teams all tied on 73 points.

Onchan A are top after two solid 9-1 wins away at Nobles A and South Ramsey B respectively, however they have played a game more than both of their rivals and with them sitting out this week it will be a case of how many do they trail by when they take to the green for their next match.

Marown A are next on points difference and they will be delighted with their 10-0 maximum over a battling Douglas B side at the Villa Marina. South Ramsey A are third after two 8-2 home wins over Finch Hill A and Port St Mary A.

With Onchan sitting out this week both Marown and South will be battling it out for top spot, however with a trip to Onchan next on their agenda Marown will be hoping to give themselves a little breathing space.

Peel A are won the big game in Division Two beating Onchan B 6-4 away from home to move eight points clear in first position. Castletown B are in second place after their own battling 6-4 win away at Marown B. Onchan B are third on the same points as Town B.

Douglas C are top of the Division Three Tree however were made to fight all the way by Castletown C just having enough to win 6-4. Ballaugh C are second four points off the pace after a superb 10-0 maximum away at Peel D. Port Erin B are just two points further back.