Title win number seven isn’t in the bag but it came very much into sharp focus as East Lothian hopes continue after beating defending champions Lanarkshire South in last Saturday’s Scottish Counties Championship thrilling quarter-final clash at Haddington BC.Read More
Wins for the rinks skipped by man of the match Glenn Blair (+11), Brian Young (+10) and Alister Kennedy (+4) paved the way for a 116-112 win while the defeats sustained by Derek Oliver (-4), Billy Mellors (-6), Derek Oliver and John McCrorie (-11) were appreciated as great battling efforts. But the scoreline does not near tell the full story as it looked all doom and gloom for the garden county as the visitors took the initiative on a fast playing surface to lead 41-18 after five ends and then by ten ends had increased the advantage further to lead 72-38. However, a heavy rain shower appeared to change the pace of the green slightly and with it came an East Lothian comeback that has been hailed as one of the best ever. The home side players found a higher gear than their opponents and it spurred them on to produce a fantastic grandstand finish to eventually overtake their highly talented opponents to record a phenomenal win from the jaws of defeat and send the large home support into raptures.
“What can I say about these boys – with six or seven ends to go across the green chances of us winning the match looked virtually impossible as we trailed a very talented side by nearly 30 shots but the magnificent team spirit we have built up once again shown through and the phenomenal finish we produced in the final few ends had the Lanarkshire boys running for cover”, said a delighted team manager Stewart Johnston.
Lanarkshire West now awaits East Lothian in the semi-final at neutral venue Broughty BC in Dundee on Saturday (2pm). The garden county will again enter the fray without the services of icon figure Alex Marshall MBE while holiday commitments rule out the talented pairing of Steven Morgan and Derek Oliver. Team manager Stewart Johnston recalls team captain Scott Kennedy and his Cockenzie & Port Seton teammate Craig Valentine to the line-up and they will form a strong looking back end combination in a team that reads: – R.Thomson (ELCO), D.Whitson (Tra), T.Young (Dun), G.Blair (Hadd) skip C.Johnston (Orm), M.McCormack (Win), C.Valentine (C&PS), S.Kennedy (C&PS) skip A.Martin (Tra), J.Gordon (C&PS), W.W.Wood M.B.E. (Giff), J.McCrorie (Tra) skip M.Osborne (Tra), B.Cormack (Mac), B.Dunleavey (Aber), B.Young (Tra) skip S.Thomson (Hadd), C.McLeod (Win), S.Cochrane (ELCO), A.Kennedy (Hadd) skip G.White (Aber), G.Pryde (ELCO), J.Mower (Hadd), B.Mellors (Hadd) skip Any player selected who is unable to play is requested to contact team manager Stewart Johnston immediately on 07939 700720. Bus pick-up times as follows: Haddington (Corn Exchange) 10.15am Macmerry (Miners Club) 10.25am Tranent (EL-Coop BC) 10.30am
Any supporters wishing to travel on the team coach are asked to contact ELBA Vice President Andy Burt on 07783 323079 to check on availability of seats.
East Lothians senior side experienced heartbreak hotel scenario for a second week running in the shape of another agonising single shot defeat inflicted upon them this time by West Fife in a tension-filled climax to the Matt Purdie Trophy clash at Headwell BC in Dunfermline. Good wins on the rinks skipped by Alan Morgan (+5), George Cowan (+3) and team captain Tommy Young (+1) plus a peel for Alistair Russell were not enough to cover the damaging 10 shot defeat for John Smith. “It is so frustrating but we were not consistent enough in the early period of the match and had to chase the game thereafter. We showed great character in the closing stages but left ourselves just too much to do but hopefully the luck will go with us next game when we play our first home tie of the campaign”, said team convenor Andy Burt. The side is back in action on Monday when they play West Lothian at EL-Coop BC in Tranent (12 noon). The following side has been announced:- T.Thomson (C&PS), J.Greenwood (Aber), R.Strang (Elph), T.Young (Dun) skip/capt B.Scott (Mac), K.Morgan (C&PS), JP.Hamilton (W/B), A.Russell (Tra) skip D.Arnott (ELCO), G.Gray (ELLC), G.Smith (ELCO), G.Cowan (E/L) skip B.Brunton (Dun), D.Hogg (ELCO), P.Fallen (Elph), J.Murray (Dun) skip D.Temperley (Orm), A.Stewart (Muss), G.Blyth (ELLC), A.Morgan (C&PS) skip Reserves:- D.Kennedy (W/B), W.Fotheringham (Aber), E.Denholm (Giff), A.Jamieson (C&PS), A.Delaney (Hadd), J.Smith (ELLC) Any player selected who is unable to play is requested to contact team convenor Andy Burt immediately on 07783 323079. All players to report at EL-Coop BC by no later than 11.15am.
Youngsters Megan Kivlin, David Young and Dean Riva of EL-Coop BC were crowned national champions last Sunday when they brought home the Scottish Cup Triples title to East Lothian for a first time. The talented trio were in awesome form at Linthouse Bowling Club in Glasgow and the path to national title glory was secured with wins over Zetland, Stonehaven and Ardeer/Blacklands.
Tranent based side EL-Coop have hit the front entering the final six match straight in the race for the coveted Division 1 title of the East Coast Carpets sponsored East Lothian Leagues with their latest 6-2 victory at home to West Barns good enough to punish the shock 8-0 defeat of Cockenzie & Port Seton at home to title holders Tranent. Cockenzie & Port Seton’s defence of their hard-earned table top position has proved to be short lived as they were soundly beaten by a Tranent side that will go top if they can fire on all three cylinders for a second successive game in tonight’s (Thursday) rescheduled home match against Prestongrange. Haddington reignited their title challenge as they moved to within five points of the leaders with a convincing 6-2 win at home against Castlepark. The relegation battle looks likely to go right down to the wire and Elphinstone gave themselves a great chance of surviving when they escaped from Gifford with an outstanding 6-2 triumph while foot of the table Prestongrange are four points from safety following their 4-4 draw at home against mid table East Linton.
Defending champions Tranent could have the chance to stamp their authority on the Division 1 title race when they go head to head with relegation zoned Elphinstone in Friday night’s 13th round of fixtures of the 18-match campaign. EL-Coop face a testing visit to Castlepark while Cockenzie & Port Seton welcome back Craig Valentine and Scott Kennedy into their line-up that heads up the A1 to tackle West Barns. Haddington make the short trip to East Linton while Prestongrange entertain Gifford.
All club secretaries are requested to ensure that all league and cup results, including shots aggregate score, are phoned into ELBA Match Secretary Keith Fender on 01620 860217 or via text message 07786 110416 immediately after each match.
The climax to the ELBA Top 5 singles tournament for the Andrew McKellar Trophy will be staged on Sunday as West Barns BC and East Linton BC jointly host finals day from 12 noon. Both clubs host a semi-final clash before the grand finale is staged at East Linton at around 3pm. The eventual winners will go forward and represent East Lothian in the national event later in the season.
Cockenzie & Port Seton Bowling Club is staging an Open Pairs tournament on Saturday 13th August with a high-class field expected to challenge for the lucrative £400+ prize fund on offer in the Belhaven Brewery sponsored event. The tournament is a round robin event and entries are now being accepted and can be obtained by contacting club match secretary Steven Morgan on 01875 810481.
Draw for Gifford Bowling & Sports Club Senior Open Triples tournament, sponsored by MacKenzie Hughes, Leisure Time Sports and Jock Brodie, on Wednesday (20th July) is as follows:- 9.30am R.Rattray, R.Mabshall, W.Gray, G.McLeod, E.Denholm, M.McLeod, J.Brodie, Jas.Grindlay, A.Cross, J.Gray, A.Dugay, J.Forbes 10.30am S.Plenderleith, J.Whitfield, M.Grindlay, Bellsburn, A.Young, S.Galloway, Bellsburn, J.Kerr, M.Wood, T.Kerr, W.W.Wood MBE, Late Entry can be obtained by contacting tournament organiser Brian Bissett on 07903 541373.