Very close at top

There were no positional changes, but things are much closer between the top three in the Manx Petroleum sponsored Outdoor Winter Bowls League after the latest two days of action, which included the 100th fixture.

Before any bowls were played, the margin between first and third was 34 points, whereas at the conclusion on Sunday that gap was down to 14.

Leaders Outsiders kicked the weekend off against an Erin Porters team who are clearly not settling for a place in the bottom half and they fought out a contest in which the top team dropped 18 points.

Porters then pushed southern neighbours Louie’s Angels in a clash that was decided by only five points from a high scoring result that leaves Porters 24 chalks behind sixth placed Parkers, with victors Angels currently fifth.

Things didn’t get any easier for Outsiders when they re-joined the action against an Angels outfit with players quite capable of causing an upset and after a draw on games the table toppers triumphed by just nine points.

Although having dropped 28 chalks during the session, Outsiders retained their position at the top, but their average dropped to 117.8, with Lakers close behind on 117.1 and the A-Team due to play 24 hours later, now 258 adrift, with a possible 252 available.

Results for Saturday, January 19: Outsiders 108 (3), Erin Porters 96 (3); Erin Porters 113 (2), Louie’s Angels 118 (4); Louie’s Angels 107 (3), Outsiders 116 (3).

Govags are another team fighting to improve their position in the table, they are currently eighth, and they began Sunday afternoon with a maximum score against Bits n Bobs.

Hoping to take advantage of the dropped points by the leaders the day before, A-Team had to overcome a Bowl Rollers side who were always going to put up a fight, and this they did, taking eight points from their opponents final total.

The next fixture on the list – number 100 – produced the closest outcome of the weekend with Govags getting the better of Bowl Rollers by just two points – two less than the last time they met.

Unfortunately for bottom side Bits n Bobs, the final outcome went to form and A-Team recorded their fourth and the campaign’s 21stmaximum to move onto an average of 116.9 – cue that headline from a few months back!

This leaves the top three separated by less than one point on average and they are being chased closely by Seven-Up who are currently on 116, having played two fixtures less.

Results for Sunday, January 20: Govags 126 (6), Bits n Bobs 80 (0); A-Team 118 (5), Bowl Rollers 88 (1); Bowl Rollers 101 (3), Govags 101 (3); Bits n Bobs 62 (0), A-Team 126 (6).

Romping to victory in their group at the midweek round robin were the trio of Doug Allan, Tricia Bull and Peter Karran, with Derek Allen, Brenda Bowyer and Reg Temporaza finishing as runners-up.

Also played as triples the other gang had Terry Bates, Brian Lindsay and Bernie McPhee as winners, ahead of Pat Lenton, Brian Corner and Steve Crampton.