There is a stark contrast to the early campaign fortunes of Tanfield and Pilrig in Division 1 of the Alpha Trophies sponsored Edinburgh Bowling League with the two promoted clubs holding prominent positions at opposite ends of the table.Read More
Both clubs both enjoy proud records in the top echelon of the EBL with Pilrig the inaugural champions in 1998, and top dogs again in 2008, while Tanfield include five in a row in their six title celebrations.
This weeks third round of matches pitched the two clubs into an eye catching head to head confrontation at Pilrig, and the outcome was a spectacular 9-0 triumph for Tanfield. The result kept Pilrig anchored on the bottom rung with a miserable tally of two points that puts them a sizeable 16½ points adrift of a Tanfield team that occupy a lofty second top position.
Parkside are the early pacesetters with the defending champions going great guns and exceptionally pleased to turn in a strong home performance that resulted in a 7-2 dominance over last seasons runners up, Queensberry. The champions of 2007, 2012, and 2015 sit four points clear of Tanfield and have opened up a gap that is an encouraging 6½ wide between them and record seven times champions, Craigentinny.
Craigentinny will be less than pleased by a narrow 5-4 win at home to Maitland and the sleeping paper giants of the EBL seem to have lost the killer instinct and replaced it with a self handicapping policy. Maitland showed themselves to be tough nuts to crack last season and although presently sitting third from bottom share the 13½ point mark with Queensberry and Hillside.
Hillside normally rely on strong home form to stave off the threat of relegation blues and the yo-yo club of Division 1 did themselves a favour with a 7-2 win over Northern that gives the home club a five point advantage over of their second from bottom rivals.
Andy McNab was the high-flyer in Tanfield’s clean sweep over Pilrig and soared from 2-2 to 24-2 as he skipped Graham Mitchell, Alex Thompson, and Derek McLean to a 26-6 crushing of Mark Wilson. Mal Higgenbotham crushed Darren McKenny, 28-10, and Robert White beat Graeme Gow, 16-11; but it took a 2, 1, 1 finish for Stuart Campbell to escape to a 16-14 win over Euan Craig.
Wins for Andrew Jeffrey, 33-7 over Brian Higgins, and Daniel Gormley, 25-8 over Graeme McIntosh, were whopping wins that easily earned Craigentinny the bonus point over Maitland (84-51). But Maitland eclipsed two of the home team stars with Alan Trotter skipping Allan Small, Ross Barclay, and Jim Robertson to a 20-13 win over Willie McDonald, and Gary Stout kicking on from 10-11 to inflict a 16-13 wound on Andy Caldwell.
It is difficult to come to terms with one of the Capital City’s top clubs parading their skills in Division 4 of the EBL but Carrick Knowe were punished for not joining up for several years, as were other former Water of Leith loyalists Bainfield, Colinton, Sighthill, and Gorgie Mills. Carrick Knowe were at home to Bainfield and won 6-3; Colinton edged a 5-4 away win over Dean; while in Division 5, Sighthill derailed Tramways, 9-0 and Gorgie Mills beat Trinity, 6-3.