The ultra-talented East Lothian pairing of Alex Marshall MBE (Gifford) and Derek Oliver (Cockenzie & Port Seton) are currently overseas as part of the Bowls Scotland High Performance Squad taking part in the Gold Coast 8 nations event in Broadbeach, Australia.Read More
Scotland have met the qualifying standard with Commonwealth Games Scotland in all 8 disciplines for next years’ Commonwealth Games meaning this is a key event for players to perform on Broadbeach greens before individual selections in September. There is a squad of 9 men and 8 ladies where all players will be rotating throughout the 8 Nations. The 8 Nations competing alongside Scotland will be New Zealand, Wales, Canada, Malaysia, Hong Kong China and 2 Australian Teams.
East Lothian suffered a damaging setback in their bid to dominate the East section of the Scottish Counties Championship with the current title holders of the Andrew Hamilton Trophy edged out to a three-shot defeat (106-103) by arch rivals Edinburgh & Leith in a dramatic climax to the head to head at Cockenzie & Port Seton BC last Saturday. The combined defeats of the rinks skipped by Glen Blair (-13), Malcolm Higgenbotham (-5) and team captain Billy Mellors (-2) proved too much to be covered by the wins delivered by John McCrorie (+7), Brian Young (+7) and host club star Steven Morgan (+ 4). Cockenzie & Port Seton is viewed as a win venue for East Lothian and the record they’re against Edinburgh & Leith over the years is impressive but the ‘townies’ are always dangerous visitors and having led for most of the game of this latest encounter will feel justice was being done when escaping from the jaws of defeat. It seemed that EL, facing a single shot deficit going into the tension filled moments of the match, were about to get off the hook when Billy Mellors rink combined to create a solid hold of two shots. The only escape available to Edinburgh & Leith skip Darren Hush was ‘a runner’ to ditch the jack that demanded 100% accuracy on a hand that is arguably the most challenging hand on the green but his perfect last bowl effort converted for match clinching three shots. “We were beaten by a wonder bowl that had no element of luck attached to it so deserves to be applauded and defeat is a setback but we still have everything to play for going into the final three fixtures”, reflected team manager Stewart Johnston.
East Lothian face Stirling County East at Denny BC in Falkirk in match number five of the campaign and team manager Stewart Johnston has rang the changes ahead of the must win clash. Johnston recalls Scott Kennedy (Cockenzie & Port Seton), Steven Mackie (EL-Coop), Chris Johnston (Winton) and Joe Mower (Haddington) to his line-up. Dean Riva and Graham Dodds are enforced absentees while Davie Whitson and Tommy Young drop to the reserve bench, and in a slight re-shuffle, makes a couple positional changes that involve Matt Osborne, Gordon Pryde and Glenn Blair. The team reads: – C.Darling (Hadd), C.McLeod (Win), G.Blair (Hadd), S.Morgan (C&PS) skip R.Thomson (ELCO), J.Carpenter Jnr (Athe), S.Cochrane (ELCO), J.McCrorie (Tra) skip M.Osborne (Tra), G.Pryde (ELCO), J.Mower (Hadd), M.Higgenbotham (Hadd) skip S.W.Thomson (Hadd), A.Martin (Tra), D.Sked (Giff), B.Mellors (Hadd) skip/capt
C.Johnston (Win), M.McCormack (Win), G.White (Aber), S.Kennedy (C&PS) skip
S.White (ELCO), S.Mackie (ELCO), B.Dunleavey (Aber), B.Young (ELCO) skip Any player selected who is unable to play is requested to contact team manager Stewart Johnston immediately on 07939 700720. All players are reminded the match has an earlier start time of 1pm and should report directly at Denny BC by no later than 12.30pm.
Bowls Scotland recently announced their final squads for the upcoming senior and junior British Home International Series. The 26-man senior squad includes Cockenzie & Port Seton’s Scott Kennedy along with Haddington’s Malcom Higgenbotham but the main talking point around the local bowls fraternity surrounding the squad is the shock exclusions of Haddington’s Billy Mellors and Brian Young of EL-Coop. Both players have recently enjoyed national title successes and were part of a Scottish rink that had the best record in last year’s international series. Both players are reportedly unsurprisingly gobsmacked and distraught by the unexpected snub from the Bowls Scotland selectors. The British Isles Senior Home International series is being staged at Belmont BC in Northern Ireland on July 1-2. Its congratulations to Haddington star Glenn Blair on being included in the final junior squad that will travel to Llandrindod Wells BC in Wales for the British Isles Junior Home International series on September 9-10. Meanwhile current national ladies junior singles champion Megan Kivlin of EL-Coop has been selected for the Bowls Scotland Ladies Junior International side that will participate in the British Isles Home International series, which this year is being staged at City of Derry BC in Ireland on July 22-23.
Week 7 of 18 in Division 1 of the East Coast Carpets sponsored East Lothian Bowling Leagues resulted in significance changes to the pecking order including new leaders in the shape of defending champions Haddington hitting the front and early leaders EL-Coop dropping back to third. Haddington surged four points ahead of the chasing pack after they produced a strong performance last Friday night to thrash their East Linton visitors, 8-0. EL-Coop’s excellent early season form was put to the sword in an 8-0 defeat away to Cockenzie & Port Seton who leapfrogged their victims into second place. Gifford are struggling badly and have been cast further adrift at the foot of the table by their not unexpected 8-0 defeat at Tranent. West Barns 6-2 win at Dunbar moved the visitors into middle of league terrority but the result brings the home side into a second from bottom position that will be of concern to them. Aberlady’s 5-3 away win at Castlepark is another terrific result for the team that came up as Division 2 champions.
On Friday night, Division 1 leaders Haddington face a huge test when they visit Tranent to tackle third placed EL-Coop. Second placed Cockenzie & Port Seton name an unchanged line-up when they head to foot of the table Gifford. Tranent make the trip up the A1 to face West Barns, Dunbar host Aberlady while East Linton entertain Castlepark.
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.
East Lothian senior convenor John P Hamilton has announced that the trial match for the forthcoming Inter-County Senior League Cup campaign for the Matt Purdie Trophy is being staged at EL-Coop BC in Tranent on Monday June 19. All players nominated by their respective club requested to report at EL-Coop for 11.30am. If any nominated player is not able to attend, please contact John on 07974648401 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. All players who have a team polo shirt from last year are requested to bring it with them on the day of trial match.
Finally, 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).