Sunderland make solid start to year

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Bowls notes by Richard Mckie

THE Sunderland Senior A team made a good start to 2013 as they comprehensively beat Hebburn 65-22 (5-0) at Crowtree to maintain their end-of-season play-off hopes.

Joe Flett, Billy Hearne, John Jones and Tommy Jopling eased to a 29-6 win over D.Hagath.

Billy Ferry’s quartet of George Brown, Hendy Shields and Fred Knubley built on a 12-0 lead to see off A.Birrell 22-8 while Bobby Graham’s rink of Pat Collins, Ronnie Robson and Ray Robinson survived a late scare to beat R.Richardson 14-11.

Next up is a trip to Houghton in early February.

The B team’s planned trip to Consett was an early casualty of the weather. They are next in action at home to Hartlepool B.

In the county seniors champions of champions, Sunderland’s Tommy Jopling defeated Hartlepool’s J.Aginer to set up a semi-final tie against Darlington’s B.Cooper.

In the senior fours, Houghton’s Jim Scullion is into the semi-finals and faces Durham’s B.Richardson, while in the normal fours Sunderland’s Stevie Angus faces South Shields’ Ian Riches in the semi-finals.

The local stage of this season’s national competitions are reaching their latter stages.

In the singles area final, The Parks’ Chris Yeomans face will face Stanley’s Gary Smith. Yeomans made the area final by beating Stanley’s Alan Lawton 21-18 while Smith defeated fellow Stanley player James McKenna 21-17.

The pairs area final will see South Shields’ Ian McIntosh play Stanley’s Brett Arkley. The latter came out on top in the all-Stanley affair against David Bolt and Gary Smith 17-9.

In the triples, The Parks’ Steven Harvey will face the winner of the Gary Robson (Stanley) and Martin Cooper (West Denton) semi-final.

The fours area final will see Stanley’s David Bolt face Gateshead’s B.Orrell. Bolt gained revenge for the pairs defeat after a 21-20 win over Brett Arkley.

In the Over 60s pairs area final, Park View’s Eddie Henry defeated The Parks’ Ian Brown 20-10 to book a place in the last 32 at the national finals in February.

In the Yetton Trophy, South Shields ladies’ hopes of reaching the last eight were dashed as York inflicted a 101-73 defeat.

In the Denny Cup, Hartlepool put in a five-star performance to book a semi-final spot after thumping Torquay 80-36 with the losers shaking hands after only 15 ends.

In the semi-finals, Hartlepool will face the winners of the Bournemouth/Acle tie which was cancelled due to the weather.

Cumbria’s quarter-final against Cotswold also fell victim to the weather.

In the Denny Plate, Darlington booked a semi-final place with a narrow 73-67 win over Torbay and will face either Egham or Beccles in the semis.

In March, the men’s and ladies’ British Isles Championships return to the Stanley club. Tickets are now available from the Stanley club for all days and the event runs from March 8-16.

At the World Indoor Championships currently being held at Potters, defending champion Andy Thomson MBE was a surprise first round loser after a qualifier from New Zealand Phil Bennett ran out an 8-8, 8-3 winner.

The 2013 fixtures for all Sunderland & District outdoor leagues are now on the clubs website – www.cityofsunderlandibc.co.uk.