Sanderson is Champion of Champions

JUST CHAMPION: Left to right, Brian Sanderson (Barley Mow), Sunderland & District President Billy Davis and Rod Maxwell (Roker Marine).

JUST CHAMPION: Left to right, Brian Sanderson (Barley Mow), Sunderland & District President Billy Davis and Rod Maxwell (Roker Marine).

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Brian Sanderson clinched the Champion of Champions title in dramatic style after he inched out David Bolt in a tense final.

Barley Mow’s Brian Sanderson faced Silksworth’s England Internationalist David Bolt on a tricky rink and in trying conditions both players served up a classic.

The early exchanges saw Sanderson open up a 9-4 lead, only for Bolt to notch six shots without reply, to lead 10-9.

Following another set of five ends, Sanderson regained the lead at 14-12, but three consecutive Bolt singles saw the final take another turn in the Silksworth star’s favour.

Sanderson bounced back in the 24th end. to lead 18-17.

The next three ends saw Bolt collect three singles to lead 20-18, and looked set to collect his fourth success in the competition.

However, Sanderson never gave an inch, and a single narrowed Bolt’s lead to 20-19, and then Sanderson put four within a foot to hold game.

Bolt having narrowly missed with two running bowls, tired a third, but drifted under to leave a delighted Sanderson a 21-20 winner.

This was the Barley Mow star’s third success on the back of the 2010 and 2011 titles.

In the Senior Champion of Champions final, a new name would be added to the roll of honour as Roker Marines Rod Maxwell faced Barley Mows Bobby Sanderson.

The early exchanges saw Maxwell get off to a flyer as the Marine star raced into a 8-0 lead.

Sanderson looked to have got a foot hold into the final at 8-5, but Maxwell was not going to be denied and in the end, only allowed Sanderson to score on three ends as Maxwell rapped up the final with a very impressive 21-8 win.

This season’s Northern Counties Championships were held last weekend at Houghton Dairy Lane, but sadly for the Durham County champions, it was a disappointing championships.

In the fours, despite having home advantage, the Houghton Dairy Lane quartet of Jimmy McKinney, David Morgan, Ian Lambert and John Thurlbeck never got going and went out in the semi-final to the eventual winners of Lancashire’s Bob Wood 18-7.

In the triples, Darlington RA’s John Hills did make the final only to go down heavily 22-1 to Yorkshires Chris Kelly.

In the Pairs, Darlington RA’s Neil Buckley lost 21-13 in the preliminary round to Yorkshires Paul Humphreys.

In the end, Cumbria’s David Forster took the title.

Hopes of success in the singles were dashed as Darlington RA’s Andrew Kirtland went down 21-20 in the semi-final to Yorkshires Nigel Brignall, who went on to win the final.

In the Under 25 Singles, Darlington RA’s Liam Macey went down 21-16 in the semi-final to the eventual winner, Yorkshires Dominic Kelly.

Neville Cross youngster Noah Cummings went down 15-9 to Cumbria’s Paul Wallace in the final of the Two Bowl.

By the end of the championships, Yorkshire secured three titles, Cumbria two titles, Lancashire one title, while both Durham and Northumberland were left empty handed.

In the Tom Butler Under 25 Double Fours Tournament, the Lancashire youngsters ran out winners over Durham.

As the outdoor season comes to a close, thoughts would normally turn to indoor action, however, the full impact of the closing of Crowtree in April has finally hit home.

The majority of the 350 members of the Sunderland Indoor Bowls Club will be left in the wilderness as progress to find an alternative venue has been very slow.

Various funding opportunities are available, but without an existing building to refurbish, the future of indoor bowls in Sunderland is looking bleaker by the day.

The planned meeting with the council has been put back a week to September 16, at the council’s request.