Seven 2021 champions crowned in Rugby Bowling Association finals

Round-up by Keith Oakes

Ralph Robins winner Paul Sharp (Thornfield) with past President Brian Mace-Humphries

After a year off from competitive RBA competitions due to Covid restriction, members now had their chance to play for the accolade of becoming 2021 champions in one of the seven competitions being played for at the Rugby Railway Bowls club.

There were 2 finals played on Sunday morning due to players in both games playing in other finals in the afternoon session, so a sunny dry day was hoped for.

RBA President, Terry Fuller (Rugby Railway) and Gary Tubb (Oakfield) played the final of the “Dick Avery” men’s singles with Bill Brown marking the card. Despite the showers, Gary took an early lead at 6 ends, Terry then scored to lead at 10 ends. Even scoring up to the 17th end to make 14 shots each but then Terry had a good run to reach the required 21 ends to win the trophy & title.

RBA Ladies Singles Winner 2021 Brenda Beere is presented with the trophy by past president Brian Mace Humphries

Two Railway teams contested the “Tony Dean” mixed pairs final, possibly hampered by the showers, an on form pairing of Vanessa Brazier & Bruce Truman took an early and commanding lead over Anita Wasson & Stuart Miles who at 3 shots each after 5 ends didn’t score until the 11th with a 3. Playing 18 ends, Ness & Bruce took the score to 17-11 to claim the trophy & title.

After lunch, the sun arrived as well as new competitors, markers, and Umpire Nigel Hewitson for the remaining 5 finals.

Liz Wragg (Railway) & Brenda Beere (Grange) played for the Ladies’ Singles title, Doug Anderson marking. Brenda got into her stride early with 10 shots to 1 in 7 ends, then Liz scored 7 over 4 ends closing the gap, 8-10. With both scoring 5 shots at 17 ends, Liz 13, Brenda 15. Even scoring 17-18 at 22 ends Brenda needed 3 shots which were collected with a 2 & 1 for a 21-17 win.

The “Ralph Robins” men’s supper singles trophy was quite a humdinger with Paul Sharp (Thornfield) playing ex-Thornfield bowler, Ian Gibbs (Rugby Club) with past RBA President, Brian Mac-Humphries marking. A very close game ensued with even scoring early on, Ian led 11-10 at 14 ends. Starting to increase the scoring rate, Ian led 19-14 at 22 ends, so needing just 2 more shots he seemed to be on his way to the title. Paul had other ideas though, namely scoring 7 shots over the next 4 ends to achieve his first major bowls title & trophy.

Ralph Robins winner Paul Sharp (Thornfield) with past President Brian Mace-Humphries

Two Thornfield ladies’ pairs played for the “Britannia Plate” title, Becky Lever & Pat Lowe versus Janet Bradley & Yvonne Bromfield., A very good start for Becky & Pat scoring 6, 1 & 3 shots to go 10-0 on 3 ends. Steady scoring though brought Yvonne & Janet back up to within 4 shots, 13-9 at 11 ends but slipped further behind only scoring 1 more shot leaving Becky & Pat to amass a high score over the 18 ends to take the title & trophy.

The “Coronation Cup” men’s pair trophy saw the return of 2019 champion, Adrian Johnston with new partner, Jacob Mills, an up-and-coming youngster both representing Rugby Club and opponents form Oakfield B.C., Gary Tubb & Brian Lever. A very tight game all the way for the allotted 18 ends it was even scores, 5 all at 7 ends, 9 all at 11 ends and then 15-10 at 16 ends for Gary & Brian. With just 2 ends to play, Adrian & Jacob needing 5 shots to tie and force an extra end only managed 4 shots giving Gary & Brian the title 15-14.

Two more Rugby Railway teams took to the green for the “Presidents Cup” game, which is played as 2 sets of 9 ends, extra ends if tied. The first set went to the RBA President Terry Fuller team 12-5, then Allan Hockin’s team replied by taking the second set 8-4 forcing a best of 3 extra end play off. Each team won an end, so it all came down to the very last extra end which gave Allan’s team the win.