Succession of knockout blows for Leamington

Action from Royal Leamington Spa men's friendly against Whitnash at Victoria Park. Pictures: Morris Troughton
Action from Royal Leamington Spa men's friendly against Whitnash at Victoria Park. Pictures: Morris Troughton

There was disappointment for Royal Leamington Spa in national competitions as they bowed out of the men’s fours, two-fours and over-60s’ mixed two-fours.

Playing Welford in the latter competition, there was nothing to separate the sides until a run of nine shots in six ends helped Spa’s Ray White build up a 20-12 lead on his rink with just four ends remaining.

Dick Williams was trailing by two shots on the other rink but despite him coming back to draw 19-19, White let slip his advantage to draw 21-21.

This forced the game to be decided by an extra end and with just one bowl left to deliver, Spa held shot.

However, in a dramatic finale, skip Ken Chedgzoy put his team through to the next round as he played on to a short Welford bowl to turn it over and take shot.

Two days later, Avenue were the visitors in the men’s two-fours.

Fielding five of this year’s Warwickshire Middleton Cup squad, Avenue started as strong favourites, although the rink skipped by Spa’s Dick Williams had the better of Avenue’s Matt Wordingham’s foursome until well into the second half of the match, holding a 13-10 lead at one stage.

However, Wordingham finished with 13 unanswered shots to take the contest 23-13.

On the other rink, Andy Smith beat Spa’s Ray White 25-15 to give overall victory to Avenue 48-28.

The two clubs also met in the national fours, with Nick Ward skipping Avenue to a 24-16 win over Leamington’s Ray White.

On Saturday, Whitnash were the visitors to Victoria Park as Spa’s men played a five-rink friendly match and for the second time in a week, Spa let a potential match-winning lead evaporate.

As late as the 15th end, things were still looking good for Spa as they were ahead on four of the five rinks and held an overall lead of 16 shots.

However, although they still finished with wins on three of the five rinks, Whitnash outscored Spa by 18 shots over the final six ends to narrowly take the match by 108 shots to 106.

For Royal Leamington Spa, Dick Allibon led Barry Dale, Allan Chamberlain and Graham White to a 27-18 win, while there were also wins for Dick Williams (25-17) and Ray White (23-22).

On the other two rinks Peter Higgins was narrowly beaten 18-17 and Bill Griffin went down 33-14.

Spa’s ladies notched up their tenth successive win, beating Hall Green-based Sherwood Park 73-42 in a three triples encounter.

Captain Jenny Wickens led from the front and, with Lyn Williams and Jean Leyland, secured a comfortable 29-8 win.

On the other rinks, Janice White won 28-19 and Elizabeth Glynne-Jones edged to a 16-15 success.