Day 6 and the climax to the Bowls Scotland National Championships played at the well-attended Ayr Northfield Complex saw stars from Edinburgh and Lothian capture a fantastic 4 Scottish Crowns.Read More
The cheer raisers basking in the limelight of the joyous Champion of Scotland applause included heroic capital city trio Brian Salvona, Kevin Boyd, and Paul Veitch of Parkside having etched their names on the silverware of the gents Triples Trophy.
The Parksiders were joined on the Gold Medal rostrum by East Lothians Dee Hoggan (Ladies Singles) and Joe Mower (Gents Junior Singles) also the West Lothian Ladies Pairs partnership of Sandra Steven and Kirsteen McLelland.
Great campaigns were fought by Billy Mellors of East Lothian in the Gents Singles and 21 year old Dean Mackintosh of Edinburgh in the gents Junior Singles; but both are nursing the heartbreak of losing their respective final.
Parksides triumph in the Triples bridges a long Scottish title gap since Robert Donaldson triggered a free bar celebration at the club with his 1998 Junior Singles success. The journey that has ended with Messrs Salvona, Boyd, and Veitch entering a grassroots bowlers dream of Wonderland is a long and arduous one with challenges at club then District level followed by five rounds of parading their skills under the intense spotlight on the national stage at Ayr. We are over the moon, reflected Veitch with the skip of the trio adding Amateur sportsman like we three dream of such adventure that leads us to the capture of A Holy Grail prize and to be acclaimed as Scottish Triples Champions triggers a fantastic emotion Parkside sparked the eruption of wild celebration on the banking by delivering what finished up as a commanding 15-8 win over the Cowdenbeath trio of Peter Graham, Steven Hunter, and Rab McFarlane. However, the snapshot of the developing picture in the opening stages of the final was a negative one for Parkside as they trailed 7-3; but that landscape changed with a 2, 1, 1 fight back to stand peels after 10-ends. Their focus on the title sharpened with a continued run of 3, 2, 2 to lead 14-7 then the trading of a single clinched the snapping of triumphant picture destined to grace the Parkside Hall of Fame. The Parksiders were following through on a strong morning semi final performance that saw the trio kick on from 11-9 down to a 20-11 win highlighted by a whirlwind finish of 1, 2, 3, 2, 3 against Castle Douglas. Cowdenbeath had enhanced their credentials as worthy finalists by winning 10 of 15 ends to spring a 15-9 surprise on the fancied Haddington trio of Colin Dick, Stuart Thomson, and Alister Kennedy.
Dee Hoggan reinforced the well-earned East Lothians reputation as a garden county blooming with bowling talent, the 27 year old niece of 2000 national singles champion John McCrorie storming to a 21-11 win, in 17 ends, over Gillian Gorman of Glenluce in the Ladies Singles. Winner of the Junior Singles in 2009 and the 2016 Mixed Pairs with her Uncle John Hoggan hit the lids to race into a 12-0 lead then remained in command at 15-5 and 17-11 before reaching the magic figure of 21 with a 1, 3 finish. The excitingly talented star from Tranent was following through on a sparkling semi final performance that produced a runaway 21-4 win over Lisa Thomson of Westhill.
Joe Mower emerged a spectacular winner of the gents Junior Singles title; but his tremendous fight back from the gaping jaws of defeat to snatch a 21-19 victory over Dean Mackintosh was a heartbreaking experience for his London Road Foundry challenger. Mackintosh thrilled his support with a tremendous start that saw him establish a commanding 18-10 lead over his vastly experienced 21 year old opponent a fairly recent winner of the World Indoor J/Singles title. Mower remained under immense pressure at 19-13 down; but he is a fighter not fazed by the psychological challenge of sitting in the trap of the graveyard figure, as he proved. The 19 year old Haddington ace escaped to 16 with a magic count of 3 then inspired by that he grinded out further scores of 1, 1, 2, 1 to capture the glory in a 25-end thriller. Mackintosh was suffering an agonising runner up fate similar to that of his dad (Scott) who lost out in the final of the mainstream singles in 2009. And like his Dad he should remain a force to be reckoned with.
The high profile Uphall Station partnership of Sandra Steven and Kirsteen McLelland reign as Ladies Pairs Champions for a fifth time, adding to their triumphs of 2006, 2008, 2014, and 2016 by surviving a nail-biting 20-19 battle with Jenny Agnew and Liz ONeil of Townholm. All looked hunky dory for the Station having steamed into a commanding 16-4 lead then 20-8; but their fire went out and the sweat formed on their brows with the alarming loss of 2, 5, 3, then a single that was cut down by a title saving last bowl draw by the skip to the edge of the ditch. Phew!
Finals Gents. Roll of Honour
Singles; Martyn Rice (Dumfries) 21 Billy Mellors (Haddington) 13.
Junior Singles; Joe Mower (Haddington) 21 Dean Mackintosh (LRF) 19.
Pairs; Houldsworth 21 Fairfield 13;
Triples; Parkside 15 Cowdenbeath 8.
Fours; Irvine Park 20 Huntly 7.
Finals Ladies. Roll of Honour
Singles; Dee Hoggan (Tranent) 21 Gillian Gorman (Glenluce) 11.
Junior Singles; Claire Walker (Eddlewood) 21 Bethany Hart (Crookston) 8.
Pairs: Uphall Station 20 Townholm 19.
Triples; Ayr Craigie 13 Cowdenbeath 11.
Fours; Newton Park 23 Stranraer 7.