Sunderland seniors teach Gateshead a tough bowls lesson

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IT WAS a great day for the Sunderland Senior A squad as they ran out 5-0 (44-26) winners over Gateshead at Crowtree in the inter club competition.

The top rink of Pat Collins, Ronnie Robson, John Jones and Tommy Jopling eased to a 20-8 win, while Ray Robinson’s quartet ground out a 15-10 win. In the third rink, Billy Ferry led 9-8 going into the last end, but lay two down with Ferry’s last bowl to play. An accurate Ferry bowl clinched the win 9-8.

With one game left to play, leaders South Shields have a comfortable lead over third-placed Hebburn with a place in the play-offs looking likely.

Group 2 (played-points): Darlington B 9-30, Stanley 6-24, Sunderland B 8-23, Hartlepool A 7-14½, Consett 7-6½, Park View 5-6.

Group 3: Sth Shields 8-29, Sunderland A 9-28½, Hebburn 8-21, Gateshead A 7-18, Parks B 9-17, Houghton A 8-11½.

H Sunderland ladies also returned to inter club action against South Shields. With South Shields having made progress to the latter stages of the Yetton, it was always going to be a tough afternoon.

At Crowtree, the pick of the results saw Alice Curtis, Madge Robins, Pat Johnson and Ella Baker hold on for a 16-15 win. The other two home rinks went down, Ann Good losing 18-8 and Anne Raine 21-14.

South Shields Ethel Pattinson’s quartet of Kathy Hulley, Mary Williamson and S.Thomson enjoyed a cracking 16-12 win. However, there were defeats for Margaret Mitchinson and Florence Rodenby.

H The area final of the national fours took place at South Shields. Stanley’s Gary Smith completed the first of a possible treble qualification with a comfortable 24-12 win over West Denton’s Peter Duffy.

The win seals a trip to the national championships in April, in Nottingham. Smith will face the winner of North Walsham’s Phillip Barr and Martin Christmas from area 14.

This weekend, Smith faces club-mate Robert Chisholm in the much-anticipated area final of the singles at Stanley.

H The Durham County seniors face a busy couple of weeks as they head to Nottingham on Wednesday, February 23 to face Notts in the latest round of Midland league fixtures.

Sunderland’s Tommy Jopling, Billy Hearne, Joe Flett and Houghton’s Eric Weightman have all been selected. Two days later the county heads to Melton Mowbray for the National County league final. In the final, Durham will face Kent, who defeated Northamptonshire 124-118.

H In the Over 60s double fours, Stanley’s run came to an end in the quarter-finals as Leicester proved too strong and ran out 37-30 winners.

H In the seniors county champion of champions, Sunderland’s Joe Flett, John Jones, Dennis Hulley and Tommy Jopling progressed to the final after defeating Durham’s B.Robson 26-15. Jopling will face Shildon’s Brian Hutchinson in the final at Hartlepool on either March 30 or 31.