Bainfield faced an early deficit that challenged their resolve against Abbeyview in the indoor bowls Section B match of the Premier League played at The Hutchison Crossway Stadium but the challenge was well met with the Edinburgh Elite battling back to score a 77-71 victory.
Wins on the rinks skipped by Craig Paterson, Robert Marshall, and James Hogg added up to a combined plus of 11 shots that more than covered the six shot setback suffered by Gavin Smith. Smith – who doubles up as team manager – was a happy chappy after the match saying, “Home wins are vital in the battle for survival in this highly competitive section and this is two in a row for us so our team spirit and self confidence are both in a good place”.
Bainfield expected it to be a tough fight against The Fifers from Dunfermline and that proved to be the case with the visitors showing up strongly on the first seven-end phase to inflict 35-17 damage on the home team. “The master scoreboard actually showed us 25-5 adrift at one stage and that suggested a massacre was underway however the reality was that several breaks had gone against us and but for that we were playing and competing well” described Smith.
Smith himself was a frontline sufferer in the opening stages and in the process of getting a 14-0 pummelling from a Kenny Bald skipped rink that had former Bainfield emerging star Allan Ramsay at lead.
Pre-match drama had seen Smith lose his intended third player Stuart Douglas to a late call off resulting in Graeme McIntosh being drafted into play lead and Kerr McKail and Alan Brown moving up to second and third respectively.
“We didn’t panic as a rink and we didn’t panic across the carpet as a team and there was no magic moment that sparked a revival but we all dug in and made a steady progress towards pegging Abbeyview back”. The outlook started to look brighter over the second phase with Smith the major contributor via a 14-5 input to a 35-21 Bainfield supremacy that closed the match gap menacingly down to just 4 shots (52-56). “I just felt that the momentum was now with us and although the final outcome remained on a knife edge the scales were tipped in our direction by a 13-4 contribution from Craig (Paterson) to a 25-15 score”, reflected Smith.
Paterson did produce the major highlight of the match during these tense moments of the third phase and it came in the shape of brilliant first and second bowl ‘turnouts’ that yielded a super count of six shots on end 16. Paterson and his rink of Jamie Reid, Danny McCourt, and Daniel Gormley trailed 8-0 after four ends but fired up by the six to cross 19-15 went on to register a 25-19 win over Stuart Pagan.
Marshall made an encouraging start to skip Josh Spalding, Steven Pilley, and team captain Colin Hutchison into a 12-4 lead after 10 ends then went on to clinch a 16-12 win over Paul Brown. Hogg and his front-three of Mark McIntosh, Brian Stoddart, and John McDermott faced bleak prospects at 14-6 down after 10 ends and still at 12-17 but conjured a magic finish of 3, 2, 1 to snatch an 18-17 win over Jim McGuire. Smith, admirably, got his rink back into contention with a three at end 16 to stand just 20-17 adrift but lost 23-18 to Bald.