Bears gain revenge in Middleton Cup opener

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
Despite reaching the Middleton Cup semi finals last year the Warwickshire campaign started with a heavy defeat away to Worcestershire. This year Stratford upon Avon BC played host the game against Worcestershire. In a thrilling afternoon the Bears triumphed 132-111 gaining 16 out of the available 22 points.

Tom Wheeler (Rugby), Will Brundle (Welford), Keith Wooding and Mark Ireland (both Avenue Coventry) provided the story of the afternoon as they found themselves 15-0 down after seven ends.

Over the next seven ends they cut the deficit down to two and three ends later they took the lead for the first time. A nip and tuck finale saw Ireland and co finish up with a 25-21 victory. While Ireland’s rink had a poor start the same couldn’t be said about Mark Smith (Avenue Leamington), Jordan Ward (Rugby), Luke Horne and Adam Smith (both Avenue Leamington) as they raced to an eleven shot lead after five ends.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

By the midway point the lead had been increased to fourteen shots, with five ends left the lead was still fourteen and a strong finish saw Smith’s rink run out 31-12 winners.

Ireland and co contemplate shotIreland and co contemplate shot
Ireland and co contemplate shot

Sam Shuttleworth (Whitnash), Harry Smith (Nuneaton), Adam Shuttleworth and Tom Millership (both Whitnash) started well but were just one shot up after ten ends. A good spell saw that lead increase to seven with six ends to play, the rest of the game was pretty balanced, Millership and co winning 24-18.

The all Nuneaton rink of Keith Avery, Andy Manning, Scott Ashby and Graham Ashby were all square at the halfway stage and also after seventeen ends.

The visitors took three singles in the next three ends leaving Ashby and co a difficult final end, they could only take a single, final score 13-15.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Andy Prickett (Welford), Ian Billington (Whitnash), Dan Ellicott (Avenue Leamington) and Andy Walters (Welford) also got off to a tight start, the scores all level after ten ends.

Worcestershire made the early running in the second half but with two ends to go the scores were still level.

A shot to potentially turn a deficit into a positive in the penultimate end had some misfortune, the visitors picking up three, despite their best efforts Walters’ rink could only take a final end single, final score 18-20. Aiden Maries (Avenue Leamington), Josh Tiffin, Craig Carter (both Rugby) and Dan Box (Welford) started well, ten up after three ends.

However Worcestershire fought back to level the game after twelve ends and took a six shot lead with three ends to play. The sides exchanged doubles and Box’s rink finished with another double to lose 21-25.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

* A wet Nuneaton BC hosted the clash between Warwickshire and Leicestershire in the latest inter county friendly. In a rain shortened game the foxes pipped the bears 77-72.

Neil Crowther (Avenue Coventry), Steve Martin (Grange), County Secretary Michael Jackson and Past President Nigel Hewitson won six of the opening seven ends, picking up a four and treble in the process to open up a 12-1 lead.

The visitors did better in the final eight ends but couldn’t deny Hewitson and co a 15-10 victory. Lee Ingleston (Rugby Railway), Match Secretary Mike Hall, Allan Kinge (Nuneaton) and Bruce Truman (Rugby Railway) were a shot down after six ends but hit five over the next three ends to move ahead. A double, single and four took the Foxes three up with three ends to go, Truman’s rink cleared the deficit over the next two ends and took a final end single to win 14-13.

Barry Sheasby (Oakfield), Martin Webster, Brian Beere (both Grange) and Past President Brian Mace Humphries and their opponents were locked in a tight battle, the first twelve ends all being decided by singles, though it was Leicestershire that led 7-5. The visitors doubled their lead on the next end, Mace Humphries and co replied with a single and double, not quite levelling the game, the Foxes winning 9-8. Peter Litchfield (Oakfield), Wilf Pinfold (Nuneaton), Ted Coupe (Executive) and Assistant Secretary Bob Allcock were all square after five ends and ten ends. Allcock’s rink scored a trio of singles to move ahead with two ends left but the visitors took the lead with a four on the next end and a final single to win 14-12.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

County President Aubrey Brookhouse, David Burrows (Wellesbourne), Colin Daly (Lillington) and Past President Geoff Moran trailed by a shot after eight ends but moved ahead with a treble on the next end, the sides exchanged singles to leave the visitors one up with three ends to play. Moran and co levelled the scores on the next end but a penultimate end five swung the game firmly in the Foxes favour, final score 15-12 to the visitors. Late stand in Martin Hockey (Nuneaton), Chris Dickens (Norgren), Steve Bird (Avenue Coventry) and Tom Duggins (Executive) were two adrift after seven ends but slipped to seven down with ten ends gone. A double and treble brough Duggins’ rink to within two but the visitors hit back with a treble of their own, the sides exchanged singles to give the visitors the 16-11 win.