The first County title of the season has been decided, with Houghton Dairy Lane taking the Ladies fours crown.
The semi-finals and final were played at Sunderland this week, with Joan Rodgerson’s Dairy Lane quartet, also featuring Susan Forster and Margaret Metcalf triumphant.
In the final, Rodgerson defeated Sunderland’s Sue Almond 21-16, having overcome Hetton’s Norma Stephenson 21-14 in the semis, while Almond booked her final spot with a 18-11 win over Lyndhurst’s M. Wright.
Both finalists qualify for the National Championships at Leamington Spa in August.
On Monday. the triples title will be decided as the semi-finals and final are played at Consett Park, with Rodgerson. looking for a quickfire double. facing a tough semi-final against the host club’s Gill Jones (10am).
The first of the District Two area finals nights takes place at Barnes Park on Tuesday, with four of the five second stage places up for grabs. Sunderland’s S.Summers has already claimed one of the spots with a second consecutive walkover.
Fours draw: S Baker (Silksworth) v WS Ferry (Silksworth), R Graham (Roker Marine) v M Winter (South Hylton), R Campbell (Sunderland) v D Bolt (Silksworth), M Laydon (Silksworth) v R Mckie (Sunderland)
The triples area finals take place on Thursday, again at Barnes Park, with four places up for grabs.
Triples draw: I Riches (Silksworth) v E Cook (Roker Marine), R Graham (Roker Marine) v A Hill (Barnes Park), K Richardson (Barnes Park) v J Kelly (Silksworth), D Bolt (Silksworth) v W Ferry (Silksworth)
The Northern Counties Muras Trophy got underway last weekend as Durham County’s A team made the trip to Alnwick to face Northumberland, only to succumb to a 19-shot defeat.
Durham had two wins and a draw out of the six rinks, with the pick of the results being John Fielding’s Darlington RA quartet securing a 24-13 defeat of Paul Ging.
Elm Tree’s Glenn Skipp steered his rink to a two-shot win, while Silksworth’s County team manager, David Bolt, had to settle for a draw.
Scores (Durham skips first): P Mosley 11 P Harvey 26, D Bolt 18 R Train 18, A Kirtland 11 C Palmer 23, G Skipp 17 S Richardson 15, J Fielding 24 P Ging 13, J Mansfield 15 C Cooper 20
Standings: Northumberland 17, Yorkshire 16, Lancashire 6, Durham 5
The Muras title will be decided today as the double header against Lancashire and Yorkshire takes place at Redcar.
Durham: M Gleeson (Spennymoor), K Burton (RA), J Ballantyne (Stockton), B Hopkins (RA); M Ray (Owton Lodge), S Cairns (SIlksworth), I Jackson (Park), J Mansfield (Park); P Dixon (Silksworth), J Harston (Hundens), D Fenwick (Elm Tree), D Bolt (SIlksworth); M Peach (Houghton DL), L Maughan (Silksworth), W Ferry (Silksworth), G Skipp (Elm Tree); V Rewcastle (RA), M Laydon (Silksworth), K Donkin (SIlksworth), P Smithson (Silksworth); J Hills (RA), J Wells (Park), N Cummings (RA), P Mosley (Stockton). Reserves: C Boston (Elm Tree), N Buckley (Darlington RA), N Ridley (Silksworth), A Ward (Owton Lodge)
Durham County ladies’ Stella Logan team bounced back from their opening defeat to Yorkshire to claim an impressive 49-shot win over Northumberland at Pelton Fell.
The win moves them into second place in the table, with Cumbria next up in June.
In the national Top Club event, Silksworth were beaten 3-2 at Leadgate, however, in the double fours, both Silksworth squads made progress.
The A team beat Consett Park 57-27 and the B team saw off Spennymoor 47-37. Houghton Dairy Lane also progressed with a 42-18 win over Pelton Fell.
The third round of Earl Cup fixtures took place this week.
In the First Division, Houghton Dairy Lane needed a last bowl from former County star Keith Makepeace to sink Roker Marine 4-3, but it wasn’t enough to move Marine off the top.
There was another cracking finish as Houghton Town defeated Thompson Park by a single shot to record a 6-1 win, while Barnes Park beat Seaham Town by 37 shots (7-0).
In the Second Division, with leaders Barnes West End on a bye, Hetton Workmen’s moved top with a six-shot (5½-1½) win at North Biddick.
South Hylton got off the mark with a 23-shot (6-1) home win over Hylton CW, while Usworth beat Sunderland 6-1. Third Division leaders Whitburn suffered their first defeat of the season, 5-2 at Roker Park, while Washington broke their duck with a 6-1 victory over New Herrington.
Rain washed out Wednesday’s Swan Cup fixtures.
In the Storey Bowl, holders Hetton Workmen’s moved top with a cracking 7-0 success at Dawdon, while unbeaten Thompson Park overcame Hylton CW 5-2, Seaham Town beat Houghton Town 5-2 and Roker Park bagged a first win of the campaign, 5½-1½ against Wearmouth.
Pennywell produced the result of the week in the Harold Howey Trophy, securing a comprehensive 26-shot 4-0 Second Division triumph at unbeaten leaders Washington B.
The draws for the Silver Jacks Pairs and Burkett Shield Triples have been made.
Holders Marine’s John Smith and Fred Knubley open their pairs defence at Thompson Park, while Burkett holders John Patterson, Richie Jobling and Frankie Froud (Barnes West End) entertain Houghton Town’s Paul Wallace in the first round.
The quarter-finals are set for Tuesday, August 9, with the semi-finals on the Thursday and the final on the Friday.
The Durham County IBA held its AGM this week, with Aycliffe’s Alan Cooper installed as the 2016 County president.
Hartlepool’s Les Parnell is junior vice president.
The Inter-County League will now change to a Denny Cup format, with two rinks home and away, with clubs offered the chance to enter an extra team.
This year’s First Division saw Hartlepool finish top, but, as only Gateshead fulfilled all their fixtures, the title was offered to Gateshead, however they declined the offer, so, for the first time ever, there will be no winner.
Darlington and Aycliffe were relegated, with The Parks and Houghton promoted.
The local bowls scene lost yet another well-known player as Houghton Dairy Lane’s Tommy Hayes (78) sadly passed away.