After over 40 years it looks like the Edinburgh Evening News has given up taking reports from any games. Stewart has been given a few hints about this but there has been no Bowling News in the paper for over a month. A very bad way to tell someone that not wanting any more story’s . Im sure that all Bowling clubs and their Members would like to thank Stewart for all his hard work over the years when the sport was getting all the publicity they could take. It now means that a lot of thought will have to go into this site if it is worth while for 2020.
BRUCE RAYMOND HENSELL – 1937-2019
In some remote outpost of the bowling world there may be some poor soul who has never played with or against a ‘Henselite’ bowl, but I doubt it. For in no other sport has a name reigned so supreme for so long.
It was in 1918 that Willam D. Hensell first developed a rubber bowl for the Dunlop Rubber Company and, with his son Ray, went on to overcome the problem of expansion in extreme temperatures by experimenting with a new, more stable material called phenolformaldehyde, thus creating the first composition bowl in 1931. The ‘Henselite’ was to revolutionise the sport worldwide and supplant a centuries-old tradition of ‘woods’. But it was Ray’s son Bruce who made the Henselite company into a global business which touched the lives of millions of bowlers in every country where the game is played. To date over seven million sets have been produced.
A Victorian to his bootlaces, Bruce spent his entire life in Melbourne but visited every country where the game of bowls is played, and introduced the game to many of them. Although he dabbled at the game himself, his real hobby was motor cycling, not in competition, but touring with friends throughout Australia and in different parts of the world.
A shrewd businessman, a gentleman, a loving husband and father, and for those of us who were lucky enough to call him a friend, a kind and generous soul who will be sadly missed. His contribution to our game is immeasurable so, the next time you step on the green spare a thought for Bruce Raymond Hensell who sadly passed away last week.
Bruce is survived by his wife Jenny and sons Mark and Alistair, and the Hensellite Company enters its second century and fourth generation in the care of Mark. A memorial service takes place on Thursday 11th April.
Thanks for your patience since the beginning of the Year my wife Rhona sadly passed away on Ist March – a bit quicker than anticipated.Read More
West Lothian however will also be well fired up with their semi final result in crushing premier league runners up Falkirk, 10-0. The WL name is etched six times on the much coveted silverware, the last in 2015, however in bidding to make it a magnificent seven they have to avenge their defeat by Blantyre in the 2012 final. Cameron Greer is a notable absentee in a strong WL line up that reads; Rink 1. George Sneddon, Barry Sword, Jamie Aitken, and Craig Moss. Rink 2. Bryan Cooper, Ian Drysdale © Thomas Mann, and Neil Speirs. Rink 3. Darren Pearce, Raymond Logan, Mark Allison, and Calum Logan. Rink 4. Richard Mark, Dougie Mitchell, Gary Orr, and James Speirs. The draw for the final has been announced as; Calum Logan v Iain McLean; James Speirs v Brian Irvine; Craig Moss v Jim Meikle; Neil Speurs v Stewart Anderson.
Balbardie IBC champions Sharon Leitch and Lorraine Craig made the boldest of bids to retain the Scottish 4Bowl Pairs title in last weekends national finals played at Arbroath but suffered an agonising defeat on the last end of the final.
Victory would have clinched the high prestige title for a spectacular fourth time and it did look to be in the bag when adding a 4 on end 11 to lead their Auchinleck opposition, Colleen Cowie and Claire Claire Johnston, 14-5. However failure to count at the next four ends cost them losses of 3, 2, 1, 4 to be crossed 15-14 then in a battle to the line they were back in front at 17-15 only to be piped at the post by conceding a hat trick of singles. In their earlier semi final action the Balbardie duo recovered from 13-8 down to score a 20-16 win over Catherine Morrison and Helen McVicar of Cowal.
West Lothian IBC stars Cameron Greer and Calum Logan raised hopes for national crown celebrations in the Gents Pairs when defeating Steven Dudgon and Graeme Peacock of Galleon, 22-16, in their semi final. But a slippage from 8-9 to 8-13 in the final saw them come under pressure from Stuart Pagan and Paul Brown of Abbeyview and the strong Fife partnership went on to clinch a handsome 23-15 victory.
East Lothian IBC entertained high hopes of super-star quartet Jamie Higgins, Scott Kennedy, Derek Oliver, and Billy Mellors making a successful defence of their Scottish Fours Title but challenged by an uncustomary poor start they suffered a 22-9 defeat from a Galleon rink that went on to capture the national crown.
The Alex Marshall Arena is also gripped by Cup Fever today with their talented EL team of Ladies bidding at Abbeyview (12noon) for a first time capture of The Planet Grass Scottish Cup but having to beat defending champions Glasgow to do so. Kim Hoggan is a notable absentee in a team that reads; Rink 1. Megan Kivlin, Margaret Murray, Dee Hoggan, and Yvonne Veitch. Rink 2. Melissa Penman, Mags Thomson, Emma Logan, and Janet Fairnie. Rink 3. Jackie McFarlane, Beth Riva, Gillian Mackintosh, and Lauren Baillie-Whyte.
Wishing Newbattle Bowling Club all the best tonight in there fundraiser for a Defibrillator for the Club.
The strong Edinburgh and Lothian expectations of staging a serious attack to capture the Holy Grail Gents Singles Crown in the Bowls Scotland national championships at Ayr Northfield suffered a torturous wipe out blow for all four of there talented second round challengers.
The axe fell with various degrees of anguished exits on West Lothians Gary Smith, Midlothians Stuart Fleming, and Edinburghs dual representation of Colinton ace Halley Cockburn and Craigentinny king pin David Brown.
And the tale of woe in the Singles continued later in the day with Megan Kivlin of East Lothian Co-op making a third round exit in the ladies event to a 21-8 defeat from Laura Welsh of Baillieston.
Browns dreams of glory were dashed in true nightmare fashion as the District 14 champion produced a purple patch run of 2, 2, 3 that accelerated him into an 18-9 lead over Darren Gaultieri of Hyndland. The prize of victory and a passage into the third round remained in sharp focus at 19-10 and 19-14 suggesting the end was nigh, and it was, but it was Brown going through the exit door having lost 21-20 to an explosive 1, 4, (1), 2 finish from Gaultieri.
Cockburn is a player that gives his game 100percent effort on the domestic scene and on this demanding occasion on the national stage he made an encouraging start to lead 7-6 but his carding of shots became sporadic in a 21-13 defeat from Craig Brown of Bellshill & Mossend.
Fleming of Inveresk stayed in the picture with a couple of 2s that closed him to 12-14 against Alistair McLelland of West Netherton then having remained competitive at 15-18 he bowed out to a 2, 1, finish.
Smith of Linlithgow made a decent start to lead 6-0, 10-3, 11-5, 15-10 but the abrupt loss of 1, 2, 2, 3 brought him under intense pressure at 18-15 down and he lost 21-18 to David McColm of Sandhead.
Play in the third round of the gents Pairs brought mixed fortune for Edinburgh support with Craigentinny making in though to todays semi final stage but Colinton failing to join them. Willie McDonald skipped Gordon Bold into a comfort zone lead of 17-3 after 11 ends then wrapped up a commanding 21-7 win over Westermains; however brothers John and David Fisher dipped from 6-7 and made an 18-8 exit to Port Glasgow.
Play in the third round of the Ladies Pairs saw sisters Leanne and Lauren Baillie of Cockenzie & Port Seton step up their bid for a fifth title triumph with a power packed display to crush Larbert, 28-6. They are joined in todays semi final line up by West Lothian sisters, Delia Flannigan and Angie Uttley of Glenmavis, with the 2007 champions defeating Kelvindale, 20- 14.
Laim McKay of Tanfield – the reigning E&L Tait Trophy Champion- carries the hopes of Edinburgh and Lothian in the Junior Singles – facing Robert Lenza of Thornhill in the semi finals.
Lorna Smith the former World No1 skipped her Linlithgow Fours rink of Emma Fleming, Annette Howlett, and Morven Shearer into todays semi finals with a 20-12 win over Dumbarton having rocked their opposition with 4, (1), 2, 2, 5 finish.
Wardie in the gents Triples and Carrick Knowe in the Fours scored impressive third round wins to bring added attraction for the Edinburgh support hoping to cheer title-winning performances. John Maginnes skipped Scott McDonald and Alan Ward into a 12-5 lead after seven ends then stayed resolute to deliver a 21-10 win for Wardie over Houldsworth while the Carrick Knowe rink of Graham Pringle, John Priestley, Stephen Pringle, and James Hogg finished 3, 3 to beat Kirn & Hunters Quay, 18-9.
No third round joy though for the Edinburgh Northern rink of Andy Reid, Gordon Wilson Snr, Jamie Reid, and Gordon Wilson Jnr who were bang in the picture at 13-9 up after 10 ends; but stayed trapped in the bowlers graveyard, losing 24-13 to a 6, 1, 1, 3, 2, 2, finish from Gordon.
Sighthill carry the Edinburgh Banner into the Purdie Worldwide sponsored Inter County Top Ten Tournament that celebrates its 37th year and swings into its prelim round action tomorrow (Sun).
Hopes are high that the four times champions of Edinburgh can succeed Carrick Knowe as national king pins and a favourable draw gives them home advantage against far travelled Tarves of Aberdeen & Kincardine.
E&L Hamilton Trophy star John McDermott spearheads the Sighthill challenge in the Singles and he is supported by, Adam Melrose and Graeme Eddington (Pairs); Aaron Donald, Scott Lyell, and Stuart Isbister (Triples: Ross moodie, David Connelly, Ross Noble, and Gary Connelly (Fours).
The champion club of all 25 City and County Associations nationwide are competing for the much coveted Jimmy Page Memorial Trophy – commemorating an Edinburgh personality figure of yesteryear – and this years final is being hosted by Bainfield BC on Sunday June 10.
Kirkliston are Top Ten legends having reigned as West Lothian champions on a record 12 occasions and The Cheesetown Boys have gone on to reach six national finals and capture the Scottish crown a record four times. Their bid to bring the 2018 title back to West Lothian is launched with a tough prelim round visit to their Stirling County counterparts- namely Adrian of Falkirk. The KBC line up features four times WL Master Grant Logan as the spearhead figure in the Singles while 2014 Commonwealth Games gold medal winner Neil Speirs skips Steven Forrest in the Pairs. Ray Logan – the 1998 Scottish Singles Champion – skips the Triple with his son Scott at lead and Mark Allison at second while his other son Calum skips Jordan Pearce, Andi Gray, and John Aitken – the 1988 Scottish Singles champion – in the Fours.
Cockenzie & Port Seton brought the national silverware back to The Garden County in 2007 and the giants of the East Lothian scene are expected to enjoy a strong 2018 campaign- albeit facing a tough test tomorrow away to Dumfriess. Scott Kennedy leads the line in the Singles while recent Gold Medal hero Derek Oliver skips Jamie Higgins in the Pairs while just announced new cap Steven Morgan skips Martin Munro and Jamie Gordon in the Triples. Michael Green, Gordon Baillie, Steven Thomson and Craig Valentine complete the line up in the Fours.
On the face of it Midlothian champions Deantown will line up as underdogs in an away visit to Law – the champions of mighty Lanarkshire – but there is a strong Top Ten tradition in the area and their Top Ten is not short of experienced figures. Six times club champion Brian Yuill skips John Fisher in the Pairs while his son Mark parades his skills in the Single while Grant King skips Robert Chapman and David Rattray in the Triples. County captain Sandy (AJ) Knight skips Colin Wilson Kenny Tait and Peter Rattray in the Fours.
Edinburgh & Leith launch their Cities and Counties campaign for The Hamilton Trophy against Fife at Sighthill today and under the new joint management of Duncan McLaren and Ricky Rutheford hopes of making a winning start to the East section are high. The return at skip of former captain Andrew Ramsay of Slateford is an eye-catching selection while eyebrow raisers is the benching of two inspirational brave-heart type figures in Daniel Gormley of Craigentinny and David Fisher of Colinton. Rink 1. Craig Mackintosh, Scott Rogers, Alan Brown, and Paul Veitch (cpt). Rink 2. Neil Watson, Andy McNab, Liam McKay, and James Hogg. Rink 3. Ross Noble, Stephen Pringle. Kevin Tenant, and John Ramsay. Rink 4. Graeme Eddington, Steven Pilley, Craig Paterson, and Andrew Ramsay. Rink 5. Adam Brock, Gordon Bold, Jamie Gracie, and Robert Marshall. Rink 6. Stuart Isbister, Stevie Ritchie, Robert Donaldson, and John McDermott.
West Lothian face Border at Gordon BC and team manager Gordon Logan makes six changes in personnel from the team that reached last years semi finals stage. In come Jamie Edwards of Broxburn, Bryan Cooper of Bathgate, Andi Gray of Kirkliston, Barry Sword of Buchan Park, Calum Black of East Calder, and Gary Orr of Linlithgow. They replace Scott Mushet of Linlithgow, David Lamb of Uphall Station, Drew Paterson of Newbridge, Andrew Semple of Newbridge, Andy Walker of Winchburgh, and the legendary John Aitken of Kirkliston. Logan and his co-selectors stay faithful to their six skips but five have new thirds with the back-ends reading; James Speirs & Grant Logan; Bryan Cooper & Neil Speirs; Greg Logan & Steven Fleming; Calum Logan & Andy Dunnett; Sandy McDougall & Ray Logan; Gary Smith (Cpt) & Thomas Mann.
Midlothian are without top stars Derek Oliver and Colin Walker for their match against Stirling County East at Newbattle and new manger Ronnie Allen gives a debut to Grant King of Deantown.
East Lothian open against West Fife at Inverkeithing.