Billy Mellors is now reigning as the gents Singles Champion of East Lothian Indoor Bowling Club for a record equalling third time having captured the coveted crown at the 21-17 expense of fellow iconic figure Scott Kennedy in a quality final that attracted a large crowd to the Alex Marshall Arena last Friday evening.Read More
The head to head between two international stars of proven records produced a thrilling 23-end encounter and held the packed stadium spellbound as the final outcome went right down to the wire. “The unanimous after match view is that the final was of epic proportions with both players played brilliantly and it is a pity that there had to be a loser”, commented ELIBC President John P Hamilton.
The destination of the title was very much in the melting pot after 18 ends played with the master scoreboard flashing a 16-16 deadlock that held more significance for Mellors as he had recovered from 16-11 down. Having, marginally, been mostly against the collar it was galvanising moment for Mellors when he added a double at end 19 to lead 18-16; but four battling ends later the match temperature remained sky high with Kennedy carding a single to stay bang in contention at 20-17 down. The whole stadium held its breath as end 23 developed in cliff-hanging style then erupted in appreciation of the match winning single edged in a nail-biting climax by Mellors to give him a record equalling third championship title success joining Ian ‘Dinger Bell and Graham Robertson as three time champions. “The extra bonus for the winner is entry into next season’s Scottish Singles and that is a prize of major proportions. It was a fantastic game to be part of and it feels great to have won but the pendulum could just as readily swung Scott’s way”, reflected Mellors. Mellors and Kennedy teamed up with Andrew Jeffrey to capture the gent’s triples at the expense of Craig McCall, Gary Darling and Jamie Higgins but there hopes of landing the 4 Bowl Pairs were put to the sword by the experienced pairing of Mark Johnston and Willie Wood MBE. The gents 2 Bowl Pairs title went to the Uncle and Nephew partnership of Lessel Middler and Steven Clark defeating Andy Burt and Glenn Blair on a tie break. The gent’s junior singles final was a classic before Lewis Betts emerged triumphant following an epic 21-20 win over Craig Mackintosh. Betts also enjoyed title success in the Under 18 singles while Joe Mower was crowned Under 21 singles champion. Craig Mackintosh captured the Under 17 singles title while Christopher Robertson and Robbie Shields won the Youth Pairs title.
The final of the ladies Singles was a real corker and the outcome of a battle royale was a 21-18 win for Dee Hoggan. Hoggan stole an early march on fellow cap Emma Logan but found herself under late pressure with her opponent closing but the leader answered the test of menace in fine style and seen it out to clinch a remarkable fourth championship honour in six years. The triumph for Hoggan completed a double title success in finals week for her as she also won the ladies Fours title along with Janet Fairnie, Yvonne Veitch and Margaret Thomson. The talented sister act pairing of Leanne and Lauren celebrated title success in the ladies 4 Bowl Pairs while Emma Logan, Margaret Thomson and Yvonne Veitch reigned supreme in the ladies Triples. A new name will be etched on the ladies junior singles board after Megan Kivlin claimed her first title success following a 21-7 win over Melissa Penman. Jean Russell produced an exceptional performance to win the ladies Senior Singles at the 21-7 expense of Rosemary Mackintosh. The win for Russell completed a double title winning success as earlier in the week she landed the ladies Senior Pairs along with Muriel Hamilton.
Peter Fallen was crowned gents Senior Singles champion for a first time when he held all the aces in a 21-13 win over Lessel Middler. The talented trio of Alastair Russell, Billy Higgins and Willie Wood MBE celebrated title success in the gents Senior Triples while the trio combined forces to also land the gents Senior Fours along with Tommy Moffat. In the other finals played Alan Young, Joe Mower, Graham Robertson and Stuart Fleming won the Division 1 Grand Final defeating Lessel Middler, Matt Osborne, Steven Clark and Derek Oliver while the rink captained by John P Hamilton held on to their Division 1 status after a narrow win in the play-off decider against Davie Sands. Lindsay Bell, Gordon Good, Dougie Kennedy and Jock Brodie won the seniors Kiwi Quaich after a 16-15 victory over John P Hamilton’s rink.
East Lothian IBC inscribed their name on the Jock Brodie Senior Challenge Cup for a remarkable thirteenth time in its 19-year history after a hard fought 6-2 points win over West Lothian in last Wednesday’s grand finale at the Alex Marshall Arena. During the course of the 12-week tournament, club members Morag Wood and Muriel Hamilton organised a raffle that eventually raised a tremendous sum of £950.00 for club funds. The club would like to thank Morag and Muriel for their tremendous efforts and the tournament sponsors, Norman T Craig and Co-operative Funeralcare, for their invaluable continued support.
There was to be end of season celebrations at the Alex Marshall Arena last Saturday evening after a mixed side from East Lothian IBC bridged a 10-year gap by winning the Headwell Mixed Team Championship title for a fourth time. The garden county beat defending champions Abbeyview 6-4 on points in the final of the event played at host club Headwell to reclaim a title they last won back in 2007. Wins for the Ladies rink skipped by Janet Fairnie and the Senior rink skipped by Tommy Young combined to more than compensate for the defeats sustained by Dougie Berwick in the Gents rink and John McCrorie in the Mixed rink. “A wonderful way to sign off what has been a truly memorable season for the club”, beamed ELIBC President John P Hamilton.
Meanwhile, officials at East Lothian Indoor Bowling Club have confirmed that the club will remain open during the summer months from 10am to 3pm daily (including weekends).
Turning attention to the outdoor bowling season and the fixture list in Division 1 of the East Lothian Leagues recently issued by ELBA Match Secretary Keith Fender sets the scene for a cracking opening week of fixtures next Friday (April 28) evening. Champions Haddington face a tough opening week fixture as they head to Polson Park to tackle 2015 champions Tranent. EL-Coop will look to build on last season’s third place finish and they open at home against East Linton while Cockenzie & Port Seton also start on home terrority against Division 2 champions Dunbar. Castlepark play host to West Barns while newly promoted Aberlady visit Gifford. All clubs in Divisions 1-4 are reminded that the starting time for the opening four games of the season is 6.30pm.
Finally, you can now keep up-to-date with all that is happening on the outdoor bowling scene in the garden county by following the website by East Lothian Bowling Association. All bowlers are urged to view by clicking on www.eastlothianbowls.com