County pair exit at second stage of Nationals

There was joy for Thornfield’s Jamie-Lea Winch in the final of the junior singles at the Bowls England National Championships when she beat Bournville’s Kirsty Richards in the final at Victoria Park.

However, the 21-year-old was unable to guide Lillington’s Georgina Cooper to success in the under-25’s pairs, with the Warwickshire duo bowing out in the second stage.

Cooper and Winch beat Surrey 18-16 in the preliminary round but found Northamptonshire too hot and slipped to a 21-7 defeat.

In the senior singles, Lillington’s Margaret Grosvenor lost 21-15 against Herefordshire’s Sue Bard-Bodex.

There was no joy, either, for Leamington representatives in the opening rounds of the National Men’s Championships at Worthing where Whitnash’s Dan Ward lost in the first round of the junior singles.

And there was similar disappointment in the fours for Avenue Leamington’s Peter Hooper, John Strain, Andy Strain and Andy Smith.

The Avenue quartet went down 22-15 to Steve Dilkes, Craig Baker, Scott Burrell and Chris Kelly of Nafferton, Yorkshire.

Meanwhile, an improvement in the weather allowed Warwickshire County Council Staff to get in four uninterrupted games in eight days.

The first of those saw them leading Snitterfield 61-57 after 15 ends of their mixed friendly triples only to go down to a 17-shot defeat.

Snitterfield outscored their visitors 25 shots to four in the final three ends with all five Staff rinks suffering defeats.

The men enjoyed better fortunes at home to Home Guard in a four-rink triples, with Brian Wakefield’s narrow 17-16 reverse leaving the only sour taste as they overcame their visitors 66-54.

Barry Grant (20-13) gained the highest winning rink, with Ken Dorsett (16-11) and Richard Sharp (14-13) also successful.

Staff’s mixed side endured another late collapse against Police HQ two days later, getting outscored 24 points to nine in the final three ends of their five-rink triples friendly.

However, a 24-point buffer after 15 ends allowed them to hang on for an 89-80 success.

George Barber (24-9) and Richard Sharp (24-8) were emphatic winners for Staff, with Hilary Hickman tying her game 21-21.

The mixed team did, however, produce a strong finish against Kineton in their five-rink triples friendly, with Brian Wakefield’s 34-17 win setting the standard for a 112-70 success.

Barber (23-11) and Barry Grant (21-12) were also commanding winners, with Hickman edging another tight tussle 17-15.

The final of Lillington’s mixed triples competition was held last Sunday, with Malcolm Welch skipping Mike Calvert and Jane Henfrey to a 23-13 success over Norman Stephens, Jaqui Cook and Grace Gallager.

On the team front, Lillington suffered two overwhelming defeats at the hands of Norgren and Avenue.

In a mixed game at Norgren, Welch (16-15) skipped the only winning rink in a 122-64 reverse, while Goeff Ward was the sole victor as the men slumped to a 129-58 loss against their Spa neighbours. Andy Strain (29-5) secured the highest winning rink for an on-fire Avenue.

Finally, Royal Leamington Spa romped to a 144-98 success at Whitnash in a six-rink men’s friendly.

Dick Allibon’s 37-5 win over Les Clarkson proved the highlight.

Courier League: Division One: Little Compton 61 (8pts) Avenue 32 (0pts); Norgren 69 (7pts) RLS 4ths 33 (1pt); Stratford 47 (3pts) Homeguard 49 (5pts). Division Two: Welford 61 (8pts) Lillington 2nds 48 (0pts); Lillington 45 (4pts) Whitnash 2nds 56 (4pts); Southam 52 (4pts) Welford 2nds 46 (4pts); WCC A 43 (1pt) Homeguard 2nds 62 (7pts). Division Three: Fenny Compton 42 (1pt) WCC B 50 (7pts); Warwick Boat Club 83 (8pts) Snitterfield 2nds 27 (0pts); Lillington 3rds 45 (2pts) Snitterfield 67 (6pts); FISSC 52 ( 8pts) Shipston Sports 32 (0pts); Kineton 41 (0pts) Avon 57 (8pts); Kineton 47 (2pts) Fenny Compton 51 (6 pts).

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