In what is, sadly, expected to be the last throw of the dice under the 153 year old banner of Bo’ness Bowling Club their ace player of today has turned up trumps in the WLBA Champion of Champions with 43 year old Ewan Shearer capturing the coveted Burnside Cup for a record extending fifth time.
If Bo’ness – a founder club of The Linlithgowshire Bowling Association in 1882 – is going down the tubes at the shortly to end 2016 season then Shearer made sure it was a glorious exit with his fanfare farewell to bring the C of C crown into the club house making it a signature departure in the grandest of styles.
The final at East Calder against Richard Mark of Uphall Station was an epic encounter that lasted 22-ends and Shearer’s wings were well on the way to being clipped when his 59 year old opponent held the whip hand at 11-6. Shearer’s response under pressure was immense in the shape of scoring 2, 3, 2 to cross 14-11 then two ends later the Bo’ness champion produced a brilliant game-changing moment with an inch perfect last bowl draw that killed 3 shots destined, it seemed, to make it to the Mark side of the card. A double to 17-13 then put Shearer into the driving seat and the loss of a single to 14 was answered by a 2, 2 finish that triggered the victory salute
in front of an appreciate banking.
“I was looking good on several occasion’s but Ewan produced the big bowls at vital times and that is what wins games and title’s – I am of course aware of the Bo’ness situation and have to say the result was brilliant for them”, reflected Mark. Perhaps the fairy-tale ending was written in the stars as an early exit was on the cards when Shearer trailed 19-13 and 20-15 to second round opponent Peter Lynch of Whitburn – the current District Champion and a past WL Master.
What happened next can be compared to a tale of the unexpected with Shearer escaping from the jaws of defeat in spectacular fashion with a run of 3, 2, 1 to 21 that left Lynch both stunned and downcast. “I don’t know how I lost that one other than a mixture of bad breaks for me and good ones for Ewan so perhaps it was all part of supernatural script”, summed up Lynch.
Other victims of the Champion of Champions legend were, Cameron Nicol (Deans) 21-12; Jamie Deegan (Harrysmuir) 21-8; Davie Hay (Polbeth) 21-9. Shearer has hallmarked a glorious career at Bo’ness by stamping his identity on the sport at club, county, and national levels – Having also etched his name on the Championship Board a record 14 times, reigned as County Champion (2), District Champion (3), winning the WL Junior Open (2), the WL Masters, and parading his skills for Scotland in the last
seven international series.