Tanfield have booked a place in the final of The Virgin Trains sponsored Edinburgh Top Ten Championship having produced a first class performance to beat title favourites Craigentinny in an epic semi final clash at Corstorphine.Read More
Craigentinny entered the battle against their long time city rivals fuelled by the fizz and vigour generated by their recent EBL Division 1/Edinburgh Cup double while Tanfield were combating low self esteem having just avoided being relegated to Division 2. Tanfield turned the formbook upsides down with wins in the Singles and Pairs delivered by Liam McKay and the partnership of Alex Thompson and Stuart Campbell respectively.
The battle for supremacy was far from being a one sided affair however with Craigentinny keeping themselves in contention with triumphs in the Triples and Fours. The 4-4 share of the points might have set up a knife-edged climax however a shot margin plus of 13 tipped the winning scales in Tanfields favour without an excess of sweat gathering on the brow.
The battle of the spearhead figures in the Singles pitched Liam McKay against Andrew Caldwell and the Craigentinny support was the first to make a noise as they cheered a Caldwell lead of 12-6 after 10-ends. Caldwell a vastly experienced and distinguished player failed to kick on and a game-changing run of 1, 3, 2, 3, 1, 2 accelerated McKay in clear sight of the winning line at 18-12. McKay waited four ends before landing the killer blow and he delivered it in the shape of a double on end 20 to clinch a 21-16 victory.
Tanfield’s developing triumph in the Singles was in tandem with an explosive start in the Pairs where Thompson and Campbell blitzed Josh Spalding and Daniel Gormley, 17-0, over the first seven ends. The astonishing bombardment of the opposition did tail of but sufficient damage had been done for Tanfield to celebrate a 21-9 win that was healthy boost to their shot margin bank. It was good for Tanfield morale that the Triple of Graeme Swan, Charlie McLaren, and Robert White were more than holding their own to edge a 10-9 lead over Gordon Bold, Andrew Jeffrey, and Willie McDonald after 10-ends. McDonald finished the stronger to win 16-12 but the low shot margin difference meant their rink had much to do in the Fours. It looked at one stage that former Tait Trophy champion Ian Paterson could deliver a heroic escape from jail when adding 3, 2, 2 to skip Darren Smith, Kevin McFarlane, and David Brown into a 17-10 lead with four ends still to play. But Tanfield’s Andy McNab decided attack was the best form of defence and skipping Stuart McKean, Calum Munro, and David Snodgrass to a strong 2, 2, (2), 2 finish reduced the margin of his defeat to a non threatening 3 (19-16).
The outcome of the other semi final saw Sighthill power to a commanding 6-2 points victory over Colinton at Goldenacre with spearhead figure John McDermott charging to an inspirational 21-8 win over David Fisher in the Singles. The partnership of Adam Melrose and Graeme Eddington made an awesome start of 1, 4 (1), 3, 3 to lead 11-1 in the Pairs and converted it into a 25-9 win over Brian Davies and Cammy Cairns. Stuart Isbister and his front-two of Aaron Donald and Scott Lyell also made a blitz start to lead 11-2 in the Triples and went on to a 16-8 win over Ian Campbell, Mark Church, and Gary MacDonald. Colinton made their only mark in the Fours with Ross Byrers carding a mighty 5 at the last to clinch a 20-14 win over Ross Moodie, Davy Connelly, Ross Noble, and Gary Connelly. The final takes place at Postal BC on Saturday August 26.