West Lothian bowlers Neil Speirs and Lorraine Malloy served up Gold Medal winning performances as part of the Scotland team competing in The Atlantic Rim Championships that finished earlier this week in Cyprus.
Speirs skipped Stewart Anderson and Darren Burnett to Gold in the gents triples having qualified in the top four then defeating Ireland, 15-14, after an extra-end, in the semi finals then recovering from 0-6 to beat Wales, 17-14 in the final. Speirs just missed out on a second gold when settling for Silver in the Fours where playing second to Anderson, Paul Foster, and Alex Marshall they were piped 15-14 by Jersey in the final.
Malloy celebrated Gold in the Women’s Fours where playing second to Rebecca Craig, Stacey McDougall, and Claire Johnston having defeated England, 16-11 in the semi finals then Wales, 18-14 in the final. The Scotland triple of Malloy, McDougall, and Linlithgow’s Lorna Smith suffered extra-end trauma when piped 16-15 in the semi finals by Ireland who then went on to beat England, 19-13, in the final.
Malloy’s exploits in Cyprus denied her the delights of a Winters outing to Midlothian where her place in the Balbardie triple competing in the qualifying action of The Scottish Triples Championship was taken by Delia Flannigan. Flannigan lined up in the middle of Kim Ross and full cap Sharon Leitch and the trio put up a bold show to reach the section final where they lost out to a young trio from Dumbarton. Leitch skipped her front-two to an encouraging 22-15 win over a strong East Fife opposition in the first round proper then put in another sound performance to beat Tweedbank, 26-23 in the second round. The section final against Bryony Thomson, Ema McIntyre, and junior cap Michelle Keegan was a battle royal that saw Balbardie always in contention; but accepting their 20-16 defeat in a very sporting manner.
West Lothian’s Lynne Greer, Jenifer Richardson, and Lisa Barrett had a bye into the first round where they edged a 20-19 nail biter over West of Scotland; but were then out-battled in a 17-14 defeat from Dumbarton.
The West Lothian IBC gents trio of Stewart McMaster, Connor McKendrick and Blair Mackie edged a 20-19 thriller in their prelim round against Teviotdale at East Lothian IBC; but then made an 18-9 exit to Josh Spalding, Daniel Gormley, and John McDermott of Bainfield.
The Bainfield trio went on to win the section and are joined by Auchinleck, Coatbridge, and Turriff in the semi finals line up at Falkirk on Saturday 2nd April.
The Balbardie trio of Graham Keery, Diz Drysdale, and Gary Orr shoeed up well to defeat Clydebank, 17-6 in the first round proper but then made a 26-10 exit to Robert Kennedy Jnr, Thomas Allan, and Richard O’Malley of Dumbarton.
This weekend’s calendar highlight is the qualifying action of The Scottish Pairs Championship with Derek Hagart and Stuart Johnston carrying the WLIBC banner at Coatbridge, and Graham Keery and Gary Orr of Balbardie also at the same venue. Both sets of ladies also head for the Coatbridge venue with Sharon Leitch and Lorraine Malloy on duty for Balbardie, and Jenifer Richardson and Lisa Barrett carrying the hopes of West Lothian IBC.