Maitland’s spell as the surprise early season table toppers in Division 1 of The Alpha Trophies sponsored Edinburgh Bowling League continues despite the leaders suffering a 5-4 defeat at home to Queensberry.
Wins on the rinks skipped by Alan Flockhart and Alan Trotter failed to secure the bonus point but did keep Maitland ahead of the chasing pack and actually increased the margin of their lead over second placed Parkside from one to two. While Maitland’s points tally after three games played is 19 Parkside are left sitting on the 17 mark having lost 6-3 in their match of the night clash away to defending champions Craigentinny.
Craigentinny – bidding to capture the title for a record extending eighth time – join Parkside in second place while Queensberry will be delighted to be sitting in fourth place with a points tally of 15. Hillside might have hoped for a slightly better home result than their 6-3 win over newly promoted Leith but with 14 points in the bag they are six better of than Wednesday’s nights victims.
Northern achieved the best result of the night and their 7-2 win at home to Summerside moves them onto the 12 point mark but their foot of the table visitors are in dire trouble with a mere six points accumulated from their three games.
The action at Craigentinny saw the home sides campaign morale boosted by commanding wins on the rinks skipped by Andy Jeffrey and Willie McDonald while team manager Andrew Caldwell gained a further point from a peel. Jeffrey skipped Craig McCall, Stuart Betts, and Gordon Bold into a 14-8 lead after 13-ends then onto a 28-8 victory doubled their score with a spectacular run of 3, 2, 1, 3, 5 against opposition icon figure Robert Donaldson. McDonald celebrated a mighty count of 5 at end 11 and a super 6 at end 17 as he skipped Kevin Hunter, Scott Duncan, and Daniel Gormley to a 30-16 win over Derek Smith. Caldwell and his rink of Darren Smith, Grant McLaren, and David Brown added a 4 to peels at 14 then lay for a win at 15-14 playing the last but opposition skip Paul Veitch fluked a single to steal a peel. Kevin McFarlane was unable to kick on from 12-10 up and suffered a 17-12 defeat from the Parkside rink of Willie Watson, Danny McCourt, Kevin Boyd, and Neil Watson.
The action at Maitland saw Alan Flockhart of the home team recover from 12-9 down to skip Mark McIntosh, Steven Ritchie, and Gary Stout to an 18-14 win over John Kidd while Alan Trotter produced a last bowl ‘chap and lie’ to clinch a 13-11 win over Frank O’Reilly. More last end drama saw Brian Pollard of Queensberry card 5 shots from a take-out to clinch a 19-13 win over Graeme McIntosh while Scott Walker influenced the bonus point destination with a 20-13 win over Brian Higgins.
The action at Hillside saw close call wins for Colin Bell (13-12), BJ Smith (23-22), and Colin Hairs (20-16) tip the scales for the home side while Gavin Ramsay’s 23-7 win over Brian Irving earned the bonus point for Leith. David Poole kept Summerside on the map at Northern with his 19-11 win over Gordon Wilson Jnr but the home side ruled on the rinks skipped by Jamie Reid (21-11), Ian Miller (20-12) and Larry Sorrell (25-7).
Edinburgh & Leith recall Colin Hutchison of Goldenacre and Carrick Knowe duo Stephen Pringle and Kevin Tennant for tomorrows (Sat) visit to East Lothian in fixture number three of The Cities and Counties Championship. The three players missing from last weekends winning team against Fife County are Willie McDonald of Craigentinny, Brian Pollard of Queensberry, and Andy McNab of Tanfield.
Team manager Willie Watson has moved McNab to a place on the reserve bench while the other two were unavailable for selection. Hutchison comes in at third to Robert Marshall to fill the position vacated by Jamie Gracie who is promoted to skip in the absence of McDonald while Pringle leads to Paul Veitch and Tennant leads to Paul O’Donnell. Watson also shuffles some of his pack with George Kirk switching rinks to play second to Gracie and Pilley moved from lead to second in the rink skipped by O’Donnell while Daniel Gormley switches from Veitch to play lead for Mal Higgenbotham. “East Lothian reached the national semi finals last season so we have a challenge on our hands playing them on their own soil at Cockenzie & Port Seton”, said Watson. East Lothian lost by a single shot away to Borders in their opening match but bounced back to winning form last weekend against West Fife and team manager Ian Bell goes with an unchanged line up. The EL skips are, Craig Valentine, Billy Mellors, Derek Oliver, Scott Kennedy, John McCrorie, and Ian Bell while James Hogg, Robert Marshall, Paul Veitch, Mal Higgenbotham, Paul O’Donnell, and Jamie Gracie head up the E&L challenge.