The clubhouse was rocking at Craigentinny late Wednesday night with the celebratory anthem ‘we are the champions’ getting big licks from the jubilant choristers hailing the Division 1 title capture of the Alpha Trophies sponsored Edinburgh Bowling League for a record extending eighth time.Read More
The rinks skipped by Andrew Jeffrey, Ian Paterson, and Andy Caldwell were the hero figures with their winning performances however the bonus point is an important feature and the defeat of Daniel Gormley was a narrow one that didn’t do the home team any harm.
The final outcome of the 2016 campaign had gone right down to the wire with the seven times champions going into match 14 defending a slender 1˝ point lead over dark horse challengers Maitland. Parkside arrived at Craigentinny intent on spoiling the party but last season’s champions were sent home nursing a 7-2 defeat from a strong home team performance that left Maitland a lot to do at home to Queensberry. Maitland did come tantalisingly close to achieving a Leicester City outcome but were denied living the dream of a 9-0 result by late swings against them on two rinks. “When the news filtered through that our close rivals had only managed to win their game, 5-4, there was a tumultuous roar and a range of new jig time dance steps broke out to herald us being crowned kings of the EBL one more time”, said team captain Darren Smith.
Meanwhile there was a double dose of downcast feeling in the Maitland clubhouse with the result there not only sentencing the home club to the runners up spot; but plunging last seasons ‘club of the season’ through the relegation trapdoor. Queensberry – the 2015 winners of The Edinburgh Cup and dark horse runners up to Parkside in the race to capture the Division 1 title – making a bold bit to retain their top echelon status; but left viewing a league table showing them one point adrift of Northern.
Northern didn’t do their survival cause any big favours in a 7-2 away defeat at Tanfield; but in the final countdown the 20-10 win achieved by the rink of Darren Prentice, Grant Young, Gordon Wilson Snr, and Jamie Reid –over Bob White – was a lifesaver.
Pilrig made a quick return to Division 2 and there is a general sadness that the inaugural champions of 1998 continue to suffer a mid life crisis highlighted by a 7-2 defeat at home to middle of the table Hillside.
There were nervous times for a Craigentinny team bursting with ambition to deliver a title clinching performance but Andrew Jeffrey brought calm as he produced a 3, 1 finish to skip Craig McCall, Scott Duncan, and Gordon Bold to a 19-12 win over Kevin Boyd. The win supported the 22-10 contribution from Andy Caldwell at the expense of Neil Watson then Ian Paterson held on from 15-7 to beat Paul Veitch 17-15; Daniel Gormley though lost 14-11 to Robert Donaldson. The scores at Maitland were; Graeme McIntosh 25 Frank O’Reilly 9; Brian Higgins 23 Paul Kirkland 11; Alan Trotter 12 John Kidd 15; Gary Stout 13 Brian Pollard 14. Final Positions: Craigentinny 85; Maitland 81˝; Parkside 69˝; Hillside 67; Tanfield 66; Northern 55˝; Queensberry 54˝; Pilrig 25.