Billy Mellors has carried the East Lothian Banner into the semi finals stage of the Scottish Indoor Bowls Singles Championship and the 43 year old will bid to emulate his headline 2015 title triumph when parading his skills in the showcase stage of the event at Blantyre IBC over the weekend of January 6 and 7.Read More
Mellors was in tip top form in the playdown action staged at the Dewars Stadium in Perth where he reeled off a hat trick of wins at the expense of Dundee champion Kevin Brunton Snr, Stephen Davidson of Buchan then Callum Taggart of Paisley. Two other high profile national and international figures are through to the Last Four line up in the shape of World Champion stars champ Paul Foster (5) of Prestwick and Stewart Anderson (1) of Blantyre. But there is also a rank and file foot soldier of the sport forcing himself into the intense glare of the national limelight in the shape of 60- year old West Lothian champion Richard Mark. Mark a prominent figure down the years on his local scene of indoor and outdoor bowls – made a major impression at Perth where he claimed four scalps in the shape of, Inverclyde champion Michael Stevenson, David Auld of Elgin, Graeme McDougall of West of Scotland, and John McCabe Jnr of Galleon.
There was little joy however in the playdown action for the champion figures of Bainfield (Kevin Tennant), Balbardie (Mark Bonar), and Midlothian (David Peacock) with all three making early round exits.
Mellors progress was excitingly dramatic having been pegged back from 19-11 to 20-19 before carding the winning single on the 25thend of his first round battle against Kevin Brunton.
Mental toughness was again called for in his second round clash against Stephen Davidson with Mellors answering a 20-20 nail biting situation with the winning single on end 28 of an epic marathon confrontation. His clash with fellow cap Callum Taggart in the quarterfinals was Mellors toughest opposition on paper but the East Lothian champ produced a dazzling performance to triumph 21-12 in 20 ends.
Meanwhile Mark led from start to finish in his prelim tie against Michael Stevenson and finished on a double to win 21-17 in 21 ends then raced to a 21-9 win over David Auld in 17 ends. The WL champ next fired up his support with an 11-2 lead that he converted into a 21-15 win over Graeme McDougall in 19 ends to set up a quarterfinal clash against John McCabe Jnr- which he highlighted with a grandstand style finish of 2, 1, 1 to win 21-18 in 24 ends.
Meanwhile Bonar (Balbardie) crashed to a 21-5 first round defeat from Stuart Pagan of Abbeyview; Peacock (Midlothian) beat Gary Neilson of Lanarkshire, 21-18, while Tennant (Bainfield) beat Gary Mackie of East Fife, 21-7. But the second round play saw Peacock slip to a 21-17 defeat from Jason Banks of Garioch while Tennant was sidelined by a 21-15 defeat from Michael Stephen of Aberdeen. The semi final draw pitches Mellors against Mark and Foster against Anderson.