Houghton Fours conquer ‘A’ team

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HOUGHTON enjoyed another success over the Sunderland A team – this time in the national Over 60 Double Fours competition.

The format is usually one rink at each venue, but the homeless Sunderland squad lost any home advantage as both rinks were played at Houghton.

The Sunderland quartet of J.Flett, F.Knubley, J.Jones and T.Jopling looked in deep trouble as M.Barker, A.Pratt, D.Simm and J.Scullion raced into a 9-1 lead.

By the 11th end, Jopling had recovered to 12-12 and did in fact open up a 19-14 lead by the 16th end.

However, Scullion rallied and a 4-1 return left the final score 20-18 to Jopling, with the crucial extra end also going to Jopling.

On the other rink, the Sunderland quartet of A.Baker, R.Robinson, R.Graham and W.Ferry raced into a 9-1 lead against Houghton’s J.Doyle, A.Tate, J.Thurburn and P.Harding.

At 11-3 after 11 ends, Ferry looked set for a good win but the Houghton quartet enjoyed an 11-2 return over the next seven ends to lead 14-13.

With nothing in the overall game, Ferry collected a four on the 18th end to lead 18-14 as overall Sunderland led by seven shots.

However, back came Harding again and consecutive counts of 3 and 4 saw Harding lead 21-18 with one end left.

That swing also saw Houghton leading overall by a single shot. With the other rink finished, Sunderland only needed the shot on Ferry’s final end to go through on the extra end rule but in the end they were the makers of their own downfall.

Despite holding shot and with only the skips to play, Sunderland gave the shot away leaving Harding a 22-18 winner as overall Houghton ran out 40-38 winners.

In the next round, Houghton will face Park View.

H Both the Sunderland Senior squads will be looking to bounce back from defeats as they return to Senior Inter Club action this week.

On Tuesday, in group three, the Sunderland A team travel to The Parks.

Team: A.Baker, R.Robson, R.Robinson, R.Graham, R.Rollason, W.Hearne, J.Jones, T.Jopling, EJ.Forster, H.Shields, F.Knubley, W.Ferry. The game starts at noon.

Group three leaders Houghton A will be looking to make it three wins out of three as they entertain Hebburn on Thursday at 12.30.

Team: J.Doyle, J.Sutherland, J.Thurburn, P.Harding, T.Joicey, D.Simpson, J.Scullion, D.Sim, T.Winship, T.Hayes, F.Sanderson, E.Weightman. Reserves – M.Barker, V.Sowerry

Latest Group Three standings: Houghton A 8½, Sunderland A 6, South Shields ½, Hebburn 0, Gateshead A 0, The Parks B 0.

H The Sunderland B team return to Group two action on Wednesday as they entertain unbeaten Darlington B at Houghton. The game starts at 12.30pm.

Team: A.Grimes, P.Thomson, A.Ferguson, TW.Todd, P.Bulmer, R.Usher, F.Froud, G.Gibson, P.Brickle, W.Roberts, R.Jobling, W.Conway

Latest Group Two standings: Darlington B 9, Hartlepool A 7, Stanley 3, Park View 1, Sunderland B 0.

The start time for the Sunderland B fixture away to Park View on October 31 has been changed to 10.30am.

In Group Four, Houghton B will be looking to get their campaign back on tracks as they travel to Durham on Friday (10am start).

Team: C.Leach, B.Johnson,l T.Baister, T.Ainsley, B.Lemmon, A.Pratt, D.Vincent, T.Burt, J.Matthews, A.Gregory, A.Dix, B.Phythian. Reserves – S.Barnes, G.Charlton.

Latest Group Four standings: Ferryhill 8½, Parks A 4, Gateshead B 1, Houghton B 1, Durham B ½, Hartlepool B 0.

H The local bowls scene sadly lost another popular figure as Tommy Hall (76) sadly passed away.

The Hetton Workmen’s and former Herrington Workmen’s member was a well-respected bowler and will be missed.