South Shields hoping to see off Darlington to book Denny Plate quarter-final place

Bowls by Richard Mckie

As the second half of the indoor season gets underway, locally, the Denny Plate takes centre stage as South Shields and Darlington battle it out today for a quarter-final place.

For all, the Plate is for first round losers in the actual Denny Cup, and it’s still classed as a national title, something that Darlington have lifted on three occasions and were beaten finalists last season.

South Shields have cruised past The Parks, Houghton and Copelands to reach this stage, although the pain of that Denny Cup first round exit will not have been erased quite yet.

The following Shields squad will take to the green: At Shields: N.Ridley, S.Cairns, I.Riches, I.Maccas, J.McKenna, P.Sainthouse, S.Hubbard, S.Maccas.

At Darlington: P.Dixon, M.Peach, K.Storf, D.Bolt, D.Paterson, J.Minto, J.Sneller, G.Farqhuar.

Tomorrow will see all three local sides return to Inter Club action.

In Division One, Houghton Gilpin will be looking to bounce back from their last game loss to Gateshead as they take on The Parks.

Also in Division One, Houghton Kepier will need a positive result against a newly promoted Darlington outfit who have lost both opening games.

In Division Two, South Shields’ resources will be put to the test as other commitments have hampered their attempt at promotion having had to cancel their last two games.

Shields face a Stanley squad that only just rejoined the league this season.

Houghton Gilpin v The Parks: At Houghton: M.Baker, S.Patterson, D.Wright, B.Henderson (Snr), J.Sutherland, D.Armstrong, R.Robson, B.Henderson (Jnr). At The Parks: K.Waterson, F.Johnson, I.Whorlton, F.Froud, M.Noble, T.Patterson, M.Davis, J.Jones.

Houghton Kepier v Darlington: At Houghton: P.Collings, K.Armstrong, G.Wallace, J.McAdoo, A.Grimes, B.Johnson, B.Walsh, TW.Todd. At Darlington: M.Wright, R.Thorpe, A.Patterson, R.Mckie, P.Thomson (Snr), E.Downes, G.Brown, P.Thomson (Jnr).

South Shields v Stanley: At Shields: S.Hubbard, S.Cairns, K.Taylor, K.Thompson, I.McIntosh, N.Ridley, E.Weightman, M.Baker. At Stanley: D.Paterson, M.Peach, D.Robson, J.Morgan, P.Sainthouse, P.Brickle, M.Carr, W.Upsall.

Prior to Shields’ Inter County fixture, they face Cumbria in the next round of the Top Club competition after comfortable wins over The Parks and West Denton.

This should be a good test for the ambitious Shields squad with the winners set to face Durham or Aycliffe in the last 16.

The following squad has been selected: 2 Bowl Singles: Mens: I.McIntosh. Ladies: N.Riches. Mixed Pairs: JS.Tallack, D.Bolt. Mixed Triples: P.Dixon, A.Upsall, I.Riches. Mixed Fours: K.Paterson, P.Carlin, G.Farquhar, S.McIntosh.

The action in the Seniors Inter Club will recommence this week as Houghton Sancroft make a vital trip to leaders Stanley on Monday (10.30am).

With Sancroft currently outside the second play-off place by a couple of points and with games running out, they need something from this trip to keep alive their qualification hopes.

Houghton Sancroft v Stanley: J.Sutherland, A.Wood, D.Wright, TW.Todd, P.Thomson (snr), G.Brown, F.Johnson, I.Whorlton, J.Swinney, T.Joicey, J.Jones, F.Froud.

On Wednesday, the Houghton Gilpin seniors squad also return to action when they face a tough trip to unbeaten group leaders Hartlepool A.

The following squad will look to spring a surprise: Houghton Gilpin v Hartlepool A: K.Waterson, A.Ross, W.Longley, W.Roberts, E.Downes, P.Robinson, P.Noble, D.Gibson, R.Leonard, M.Walker, R.Robson.

Houghton Ladies return to Inter Club action on Wednesday when they face South Shields.

On Sunday, Houghton will play hosts to the Durham County Vice Presidents. Houghton’s planned Top Ten tie against Durham has been rearranged to Saturday, January 20 (10.30am)

The local stages of this year’s national competitions are entering the make or break stages with only one National Championships qualifying place at stake.

The only action over Christmas was in the South Section of the Mixed Pairs when Paul Hartley eased to a 23-3 win against Ferryhill’s Colin Larcombe (BEM).

Hartley’s club mate Paul Mosley defeated Aycliffe’s Jane Pattison 20-10 which sets up an all Hartlepool affair next.

Latest Singles draw: Northern Section: I.McIntosh (Shields) v GR.Smith (Durham), S.McIntosh (Shields) v S.Hubbard (Shields). Southern Section: P.Hartley (Hartlepool) v C.Higgins (Hartlepool).

Latest Pairs draw: North Section: M.Higgins (Durham) v GR.Smith (Durham), J.Minto (Shields) v G.Farquhar (Shields). South Section: P.Hartley (Hartlepool) v B.Attwood (Aycliffe), A.Hind (Ferryhill) v A.Ward (Hartlepool).

Latest Triples draw: North Section: D.Paterson (Shields) v G.Farquhar (Shields), S.Hubbard (Shields) v G.Robson (Stanley). South Section: P.Bostock (Redcar) v P.Mosley (Hartlepool), R.Hudson v B.Attwood (Aycliffe).

Latest Fours draw: North Section: B.Arkley (Stanley) v G.Farquhar (Shields), P.Thomson (Houghton) v B.Orrell (Gateshead). South Section: P.Hartley (Hartlepool) v B.Attwood (Aycliffe), P.Bostock (Redcar) v G.Skipp (Hartlepool).

Latest Mixed Pairs draw: North Section: M.Laydon (Durham) v P.Browne (Parks), D.Bolt (Shields) v J.McKenna (Shields). South Section: P.Hartley (Hartlepool) v P.Mosley (Hartlepool).

Latest Mixed Fours draw: North Section: S.McIntosh (Shields) or P.Dixon (Shields) v M.Higgins (Durham). South Section: S.Pattison (Darlington) v C.Higgins (Hartlepool) or P.Mosley (Hartlepool).

The Durham County Liberty Trophy squad return to action next Saturday against Lincolnshire New Earswick.

The teams have met twice in the last four years, with both winning one each.

Following Durham’s impressive win over Cumbria it’s not surprising that the selectors have named an unchanged team for the quarter-final tie.

Squad is as follows: J.Forcer (Hartlepool), C.Higgins (Hartlepool), G.Farquhar (Shields), P.Hartley (Hartlepool), M.Barkess (Durham), K.Minnis (Durham), R.Bewick (Durham), GR.Smith (Durham), P.Dixon (Shields), M.Peach (Shields), I.Riches (Shields), D.Bolt (Shields), J.Halcrow (Hartlepool), M.Higgins (Durham), G.Skipp ( Hartlepool), V.O’Neill (Hartlepool), B.Arkley (Stanley), B.Houghton (Stanley), M.Jones (Hartlepool), J.Thurlbeck (Stanley), M.Ray ( Hartlepool), C.Boston (Hartlepool), P.Smithson (Durham), P.Mosley (Hartlepool). Reserves: J.Sneller (Shields), P.Sainthouse (Shields), B.Henderson, M.Laydon (Durham), M.Squirrell (Hartlepool).

Over recent years, the Stanley indoor club has had its fair share of trials and tribulations, but the club members’ commitment to McMillan Cancer Support has never wavered. The south west Durham club has raised a tremendous £25,454 for the charity.

It may be only January, but the Sunderland and District 2018 outdoor league fixtures have been released.

With New Herrington dropping out of the Earl Cup, it has seen a return to a two division Earl Cup, each one consisting of ten teams each.

The action starts on April 30, as holders Silksworth entertain Barnes West End.

The Swan Cup remains two leagues of nine teams, with holders Houghton Dairy Lane heading to Roker Marine on May 2.

The Harold Howey leagues start on May 3, but the season gets underway with the Storey Bowl on April 28.