Balbardie IBC ladies made a bold bid to reach the final of the Scottish Cup but their exciting campaign in search of title glory ended in the disappointment of a 7-3 points defeat at the hands of Aberdeen in their semi final clash at East Fife.Read More
The formbook had suggested a slight edge of favouritism in the direction of the Bathgate based team however that wasn’t translated to where it matters, on the carpet, and the final outcome of one winning rink supported by one peel wasn’t good enough.
The developing picture however was never bleak over a hard fought first 15ends with Balbardie leading by nine shots on one rink and five on another albeit trailing by margins of three and nine respectively on the other two. The match aggregate is worth another two points and at that stage morale in the Balbardie camp was boosted by a two shot lead; representing a 6-4 advantage in the match.
But there were still six more ends to play on each of the four rinks and the final straight was destined to be a punishing one for a Balbardie effort that seemed to run out of steam. Not so though for Angie Uttley who had skipped Lynn McDougall, Irene Horsburgh, and Delia Flannigan into a healthy 20-11 lead over Ann Gauld; and the top performing Balbardie rink went on to deliver an impressive 26-15 victory.
The stand in presence of icon figure Margo Duff looked sure to pay a winning dividend when she made an encouraging start to skip Sarajane Wright, Erin Fraser, and late substitute Morven Shearer into a 16-9 lead after 13-ends. But a barren spell that lasted an unexpected six ends cost Duff and Co the loss of nine shots to trail 18-16 and it was then to their credit that a spirited one, one finish rescued an 18-18 peel with Mary Legge. Lorraine Craig and her rink of Margaret Armstrong, Nan Mitchell, and Helen Wilson rallied well from 6-15 to 12-15 but suffered a 27-13 defeat when chinned by a 1, 1, (1), 3, 6, 1 onslaught from Lorraine Mearns.
Sharon Leitch and her front-three of Catherine Lochran, Helen Keys, and Kim Ross were caught cold from the outset and suffered a chilling 19-3 punishment from Margaret Durward after only nine ends played. Leitch and Co did extremely well to win the remaining 12-ends, 17-5; but the 24-20 defeat cost Balbardie two points; although it did give the team a fighting chance to snatch the match aggregate points. In the event Balbardie were outscored 10-5 over the final two ends and Aberdeen bagged the aggregate points with an 84-77 superiority. Coatbridge beat title favourites Auchinleck with a 6-4 upset in the other semi final played at Dumbarton.