Midlothian gents failed to get into a challenging position for top spot in the A Division of the indoor bowls Premier League; but made a mighty impact on the final outcome with their last match defeat of campaign favourites Blantyre.Read More
Blantyre unbeatable at home but with vulnerable away form- visited The Dalkeith Stadium sitting joint top with Falkirk; but with the huge advantage of 177 more shots in the bank meaning a win would clinch their place in the playoff final. With news filtering through that Falkirk were in the driving seat for what turned out to be a handsome 31 shot away victory (93-62) over relegation zoned Ayr the atmosphere in an epic battle at Dalkeith was reaching fever pitch.
Midlothians 88-76 triumph sealed the fate of a strong Blantyre team forced to settle for the runners up spot and considering the 12 shot margin deal with the frustration of conceding a last end five on one of their rinks. In a clash of world stage stars it was Ronnie Duncan that finally put the visitors to the sword with his mighty count of five shots coming at the expense of Ian McLean.
What promised to a winning rink for Blantyre finished as a peel and with the visitors edging narrow wins over Billy Peacock and David Peacock it was a spectacular triumph for Colin Walker that tipped the scales in favour of Midlothian.
Blantyre came close to rocking Midlothian back onto their heels with a strongly focused opening show of good form to capture the first seven-end phase, 34-27 with David Peacock and Duncan outscored 13-4 and 12-4 respectively. It was Walkers 13-5 lead that kept the home ship afloat, and his 12-5 supremacy on the second phase influenced a strong turn of the tide that saw Midlothian dominate it with a 35-17 outcome to gain an 11 shot ascendancy and bring their visitors under pressure.
The final phase was fought out on a knife-edge and for a team with nothing at stake league wise it was a real honest effort for Midlothian to battle all the way to the line and emerge with a 26-25 edge that kept Blantyre at bay. Walker included two counts of five as he skipped Andy Caldwell, Ian Fleming, and Lindsay Plenderleith into a 13-2 lead then sustained that level of form to inflict a punishing 32-15 defeat on Jim McCann.
Duncan and his front three of Scott Runciman, Craig Hodge, and John Stevenson looked to be set for a hiding at 12-4 then 1-8 down to Ian McLean but rallied impressively to cross 16-15 then came again from 16-21 to grab a 21-21 peel. David Peacock and his rink of Ian Forbes, Keith Stables, and Scott Briggs were under the cosh at 16-7 down so did well to finish just 19-17 down to Brian Irvine.
Billy Peacock was headed for hero status as he skipped Neil Murray, David Salkeld, and Jim Cullen into a 17-9 lead; but slipped to a 21-18 defeat from Scott Bishop.