Bowls: Durham's last hope for National Championships succumb to Hartlepool in area pairs final

Durham's last hope of success in the National Championships ended with defeat in the area pairs final.

Saturday, 10th March 2018, 11:30 am
Bobby Graham secured his first county title in the Senior Champion of Champions

Hartlepool’s Paul Hartley continued his cracking run of form to sink Durham.

Having already sealed a place at Melton Mowbray in the singles, Hartley, accompanied by Carl Higgins, progressed in the pairs with an impressive 19-6 win over Durham’s Brian Henderson (jnr) and Mark Higgins.

In the last 16 at Melton Mowbray, the Hartlepool duo will face Swale’s Andrew Rodgers and Josh Pound.

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Hartley still has a chance of a third spot as he faces Gateshead’s Brian Orrell in the area final of the two-bowl singles.

In the Over-60s pairs area final, the Great Aycliffe duo of Fred Edwards and Barry Attwood defeated Stanley’s Brian Houghton 20-13 to clinch a spot at Nottingham.

In the last 16, Attwood will face Desborough’s Gordon Knapper and Brett Long.

There was more good news for Hartlepool in the Over-55s triples as Ian Peacock, Glenn Skipp and Dale Oram defeated Stanley’s Brett Arkley 19-10 in the area final.

Oram’s rink now heads to Nottingham where they will face a triple from Sutton or Egham.

In the Over-60s fours area semi-final, the run of South Shields’ Billy Ferry came to an end with a 19-3 home loss to Brian Harris’s strong Stanley quartet.

In the area final, the Harris quartet will face Hartlepool’s Mike Hagon.

The Over-60s singles final, Gateshead’s Ronnie Richardson is up against Peter Barion of Aycliffe.

In the ladies singles, Hartlepool’s Lauren Mosley will face Blackpool’s Janice Gower in the inter-area final, with the winner qualifying for the latter stages at Melton Mowbray later this month.

Next weekend, talented West Denton youngster George Rogan will head to Church Gresley for the latter stages of the Henselite-sponsored Under-18s singles competition.

In the last 16, Rogna will face Mote Park’s Joshua Austin.

The Seniors County Champion of Champions finals took place at Darlington this week.

In the singles, South Shields’ Bobby Graham collected his first indoor county title after defeating Ferryhill’s Alan Hinds.

The formidable Stanley duo of Billy Bell and David Webb took the pairs title with a win over Aycliffe’s Fred Edwards.

Webb then teamed up with Tom Duffy and Brian Houghton to secure the triples crown after beating Shildon’s Bill Dixon.

The fours title went to host club Darlington as Barry Cooper, G.Temple, Alan Stephenson and Stan Blewitt defeated Shildon’s Billy Madison.

Hartlepool host the remaining County Champion of Champions four finals on March 24-25.

March 24: Pairs final (12.30pm) – A Ward (Hartlepool) v B Attwood (Aycliffe)

Fours final (2pm): B Attwood (Aycliffe) v P Hartley (Hartlepool)

March 25: Singles final (10.30am): B Arkley (Stanley) v M Smith (Gateshead)

Triples final (2pm): B Arkley (Stanley ) v M Lynch (Darlington)

The 10th week of the Senior Premier League was played at Durham this week.

Houghton’s Richard Thorpe, Peter Thomson (snr) and Frankie Froud performed a great escape against Ferryhill.

Trailing 18-9 with five ends to play, Froud rattled off 21 shots without reply to run out 31-18 winners.

The other local squad, Houghtonians, were on a bye. Week 11 will be at Stanley on March 28.

It has been another frustrating week for a couple of the Houghton teams.

In the Seniors Inter-Club League, Sancroft were due to end their league campaign at Gateshead, but five late withdrawals meant the game was cancelled and will be rearranged.

After last week’s “beast from the east” disruption, Gilpin’s planned Inter-County League fixture against Darlington was moved back a week to tomorrow however that has now been cancelled due to the opposition being unable to field a team.

A new date has yet to be agreed.

Houghton ladies bring the curtain down on their Inter-Club League campaign when they face Great Aycliffe on Wednesday (12.30pm).

After last month’s loss to Durham, the Houghton squad will be looking to end the season on a high.

Houghton team – At Houghton: J Watt, E Barkes, S Forster, E Faith; D Fenwick, M Eggleston, B Robson, F Phythian; Reserve: O Charlton

At Great Aycliffe: M Metcalf, E Barren, J Baker, JB Smith; M Hall, E Morris, A Vout, N Stephenson; Reserves: M Angus, G Armstrong

Other fixtures: Durham v Darlington, South Shields v Gateshead, Hartlepool v Ferryhill.

Last weekend, South Shields held their Classic Open pairs competition and it was a home success as Gary Farquhar and David Bolt took the £500 first prize.

Houghton’s Frankie Froud and Peter Thomson (jnr) took the first-day top pair prize.

The men’s and ladies British Isles Championships got underway yesterday at Paisley IBC in Scotland.

Over the next eight days, the individual championships will be followed by the Home International Series.

On Thursday, England’s men will be looking to retain the Hilton Trophy. Locally. South Shields’ David Bolt will be in action, playing third bowl to Exonia’s Jamie Chestney.

With the outdoor season on the horizon, Bowls England have confirmed the 2018 qualification places for the latter stages of the various national competitions.

In the men’s junior singles, Northumberland were amongst the six counties with the lowest number of entries therefore will only be allocated one place at Leamington, while Durham held on to their two.

In the junior pairs, all counties will only receive one entry each.

Durham have no entries in the women’s junior pairs so lose their place.

In the main events, most counties are allocated two places, however any county with 5% or more of the total number of entries in that national championship are rewarded with a third spot.

Not surprisingly, Kent, with 161 clubs, and Surrey, with 131, get extra places in all eight events.

Extra places awarded –

Men’s singles: Devon, Essex, Hampshire, Kent, Surrey

Men’s two-wood singles: Devon, Essex, Hampshire, Kent, Surrey

Men’s pairs: Essex, Hampshire, Kent, Surrey, Sussex

Men’s triples: Essex, Hampshire, Kent, Surrey, Sussex

Men’s fours: Devon, Essex, Hampshire, Kent, Surrey

Women’s singles: Devon, Essex, Hampshire, Kent, Surrey

Women’s two-wood singles: Devon, Essex, Kent, Leicestershire, Surrey

Women’s pairs: Devon, Essex, Hampshire, Kent, Surrey

Women’s triples: Devon, Essex, Hampshire, Kent, Surrey, Sussex

Women’s fours: Devon, Essex, Hampshire, Kent, Surrey, Sussex

Aerobowls have announce that there new distributor for all their products in the UK will be Alex Marshall Sports Ltd.

Last year, the Australia-based Aero decided to reorganise their UK operations from their current Peterborough location and will now move to Marshall’s distribution centre in Dalkeith.