Local hopes miss out in Durham County finals

Record-breaking Durham County singles champion Andrew Kirtland receives the trophy from County President Dale Oram

Record-breaking Durham County singles champion Andrew Kirtland receives the trophy from County President Dale Oram

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Wearside’s three local hopes all endured disappointment in the Durham County finals on a tricky Blackhall green.

In the pairs final, Silksworth’s Kevin Donkin and Billy Ferry saw a 19-14 lead slip away as Elm Tree’s Rob Carson and Glenn Skipp produced a late charge to secure a dramatic 21-19 win.

The Seaham Town trio of Bryan Henderson (jnr), Jimmy McAdoo and Brian Henderson (snr) missed on a first county title as Leadgate’s David Wanaby, Ian Peacock and Garry Robson took the triples title with an 18-13 final victory.

The area’s third defeat came in the two-bowl singles final when Barnes West End’s Brian Sanderson was beaten 17-10 by Elm Tree’s David Fenwick.

In the blue riband singles final, Darlington RA’s Andrew Kirtland became the first player to win the title three years in a row with a 21-17 triumph over Hundens’ Graham Peacock.

The win was also Kirtland’s sixth in total, surpassing the record of Owton Lodge’s Cliff Simpson, who has won five.

Kirtland also landed the fours title, seeing off Keith Hind (Hartlepool Old Boys) with a convincing 20-10 win.

Other County final results – Junior singles: B Hopkins (Darlington RA) 21 N Cummings (Darlington RA) 20; Champion of Champions: B Hopkins (Darlington South Park) 21 G Robson (Leadgate) 11

The Burkett Shield triples final will see Barnes West End’s Frankie Froud take on Grindon Mill’s Alan Patterson.

Patterson has produced a couple of coupon-busting results on the way to the final – a 19-11 quarter-final victory over Silksworth’s Gary Farquhar was followed up with a 22-12 semi-final success against Silksworth’s Patrick Thomson.

Meanwhile, Froud defeated Silksworth’s Paul Baker 19-12 and then had to survive a last-end 14-13 thriller against Hetton Workmen’s Chris Fish. This week, the Silver Jack pairs will be played to a finish, with the quarter-finals at Roker Park on Tuesday.

The semi-finals are on Thursday, with the final scheduled to be staged at North Biddick on Friday.

The weather was the winner this week as the majority of Earl Cup and Swan Cup fixtures were rained off.

Out of the few that got the green light, Silksworth moved to the top of the Swan Cup First Division after a 7-0 home win over South Hylton, while Seaham Town’s 6-1 triumph at Hylton CW moved them to the top of the Second Division.

On Monday, the Earl Cup’s top two meet as leaders Silksworth entertain unbeaten Houghton Dairy Lane in what could be deemed as a title decider.

The Harold Howey Trophy First Division is still wide open as the top three teams all won. Leaders Silksworth remained three points clear after a 4-0 win at Ryhope B, while Houghton Dairy Lane B are still second after a 4-0 victory at Thompson Park B while the Dairy Lane A team are third after a 4-0 home success against Ryhope A.

Hylton CW A eased their relegation fears with a cracking 4-0 win at Roker Park A.

Ryhope B and bottom club Wearmouth are in the relegation places.

In the Second Division, the top two faced each other as leaders Roker Marine A extended their lead at the top to 10½ points with a 3-1 home win over second-placed Thompson Park A. Seaham Town B are third, with Houghton Town A a further place back.

The Storey Bowl holders, Hetton Workmen, hold a 12½-point lead following a 5-2 win over Houghton Town. Second-placed Seaham Town defeated Thompson Park 6-1.

Roker Park outgunned Dawdon 6-1, while Hylton CW had a bye.

The AeroBowls National Championships start today at Leamington Spa, with the latter stages of the team events kicking off the action.

In the men’s Middleton Cup, Cumbria face Cambridgeshire and Kent take on Devon, while, in the ladies equivalent, the Johns Trophy, Yorkshire tackle Leicestershire and Surrey meet Somerset.

The first local hope takes to the green tomorrow as Houghton Dairy Lane’s Joan Rodgerson opens up her Senior Pairs campaign against Sussex’s Maxine Clarkson.

After several enquiries about the Aero Trifecta colour range and the potential health risks these bowls could cause to players, spectators and officials, the English Indoor Bowls Association engaged the services of two leading experts in the field of photosensitivity, following an investigation process which involved two physical tests and the review of television footage of the Trifecta Bowl.

Based on the findings, the EIBA are content that Aero Trifecta Bowls can be used in indoor bowls clubs. In addition AeroBowls, based on these independent reports, have tailored the Trifecta range available within the UK.