The destination of the Division 1 title of the East Coast Carpets sponsored East Lothian League will got right down to the wire with 2014 champions Haddington entering this week’s final round of fixtures defending a slender 1-point lead over defending champions Tranent, with EL-Coop still in the mix but a further 3 points behind the leaders.Read More
Last week’s head to heads saw Haddington totally overpowered relegation threatened West Barns and recorded an impressive 8-0 home win while Tranent were rejoicing with a 6-2 win away at neighbours EL-Coop. Alister Kennedy, Glenn Blair and Angus Blair were the star performers for Haddington as they skipped their rinks to decisive wins over their respective West Barns opposition. “It’s a clean sweep result that was gained under intense pressure as many thought we had blew it but now we have the title in our grasp and it is now up to us not to let go of it”, said a Haddington spokesperson. Meanwhile, Graham Robertson and John McCrorie were the hero figures for Tranent after skipping their rinks to victories over Gareth Lusk and Paul McLaren respectively while Stephen Cochrane grabbed a consolation win for EL-Coop with Brian Young his victim. The battle to avoid relegation is also going to be an exciting climax with only four points separating the bottom four sides. Prestongrange remain at the foot of the table but are fighting for their lives and a great 6-2 win at home against Prestonpans rivals Castlepark still gives them hope of beating the drop. Elphinstone remain one point from safety but their 6-2 home win over a severely depleted Cockenzie & Port side gives them a serious chance of staying up and in the process ended their opponents title hopes. Gifford’s 5-3 win at home to mid table East Linton gives them a bit of breathing space over their fellow relegation rivals going into the final round of fixtures. The race for the Division 2 is also going to an exciting climax as joint table toppers Aberlady and Dunbar go head to head in a final game title decider, however, a big defeat for one of the sides could open the door for third placed Tranent A to snatch the second promotion place. Winton look in pole position to land the spoils in Division 3 but Athelstaneford and Macmerry still remain in contention going into the final games. One point or more for Dunbar A in their final game will see them confirmed as Division 4 champions with Gifford A and Prestongrange battling it out for the other promotion spot.
In Friday night’s climax to the action in Division 1, all eyes and ears will be on Haddington when they play host to Elphinstone. The home side require 7 points to be crowned champions for the second time in three years but the visitors will go at them with all guns blazing, as they know they need to try to get something from the clash to give them a chance of avoiding relegation. Second placed Tranent probably need a maximum points win at home to East Linton then hope Elphinstone can do them a massive favour by grabbing a couple of points from the leaders. Third placed EL-Coop are the rank outsiders for the title but miracles do happen so they must try and do the business at home against foot of the table Prestongrange then hope for the best. West Barns are the only side in the relegation dogfight that have home advantage so they must make it count when they entertain Castlepark while Gifford face a tough away assignment at a Cockenzie & Port Seton side who should be back at near full strength. All clubs are reminded that the remaining fixtures of the season, including all ELBA County Championship ties, must all commence at the earlier start time of 6.30pm.
East Lothian 2015 champions West Barns are in 2016 Inter-County Top 5 Singles quarter-final action on Sunday when they tackle Dumfries & Galloway champions Stranraer at home. The talented mob of Calum Gordon, Kevin Thomson, Gary Landells, Ian Thorburn and Scott Thorburn are the players given the responsibility of trying to book a place in semi-final.
On the international stage it’s congratulations to the EL-Coop BC duo of Megan Kivlin and Dean Riva on being selected for the SYBA team to face a side from North England for the second successive year at Sighthill BC in Edinburgh on Sunday September 18.
Billy Mellors has made an instant mark at his new club Haddington by winning the championship singles title at the first time of asking. Scotland cap Mellors served up a strong performance to beat fellow new recruit Joe Mower, 21-11, in a high quality final. In the ladies final Zoe Whellans was crowned queen of her club for the first time after beating defending champion Janice Blair. After a few near misses, Alastair Russell finally got his hands on the championship singles trophy at Tranent after producing a fine display to beat Kevin Jones in the final. Michael Baillie continues to make his mark at Prestongrange and is celebrating a second championship singles title success after defeating Craig Innes, 21-19, in a cracking final. Its congratulations to Eric Dickson after he became champion of Macmerry for the first time after edging a thrilling final against Brian Maynard, 21-20. Gareth Lusk is celebrating after he won the championship title at EL-Coop for the first time after holding most of the aces in a 21-13 triumph over Steven White. Current national junior singles title holder Megan Kivlin retained the ladies title while Davie Arnott (Seniors), David Young (Youths) and Kieran Dodds (Under 13) were also on winner’s rostrum.
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