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11a - INTER-COUNTY GAMES - 2012/13

(Created 5/9/12)

January 13th v Cornwall at the City of Birmingham IBC (ICC prelim) - Our first year as full participants in the ESMBA ICC came to an end today after a close match against Cornwall Premier in the preliminary KO round of the Consolation competition. Although we were missing 3 of our normal line-up, this can in no way be blamed for our defeat as all 3 substitutes contributed admirably to the match.


In the SINGLES Sean took the place of David and had 2 convincing wins - 4 points, whilst Ben, who has had a great season all round was disappointed in not to score in this critical game. In the PAIRS vet Gordon Raggett was recalled and played his usual cool game  to contribute to the 6 points gained after 2 wins, a draw and the shared aggregate. The TRIPLES also picked up 6 points with 2 wins and the aggregate but the FOURS once again could only muster a single win to pick up a final 2 points. One more win would have seen a tied game but would have been enough to take us through to the Quarter Finals (on match points).


An exciting conclusion against friendly opposition who we wish well in their QF. Next year we will be back to have another go - hopefully with a little more success. 


December 16th v Cheshire (Home) - It was only 3 months ago that Cheshire made us wonder what we had let ourselves in for by moving into the "unknown" environment of the ICC. Our 6 points in that opening match of the season came from 3 narrow wins and this time, with Cheshire unassailable at the top of our group we were at least hoping to double the away tally. In the event, we turned in our best performance of the season and perhaps a little surprisingly, gave the opponents their second defeat of the season. In the SINGLES David and Ben clocked up a win each and also took the bonus - 6 points. The PAIRS, Sean & Roger and Richard & Francis again performed well with three wins a draw and their bonus adding a further 9 points. Three more wins in the TRIPLES, two to Simon, Andrew & Jayne and one to Gareth, Jactinta & Pat B plus another bonus meant 8 more points whilst Rose, Bryan, Paul & Pat J added the final 2 points in the FOURS. Final tally - 25-15 (183-169 shots) - our second match win. 


Next match - knockout preliminary- Sunday January 13th (venue and opponents tba) . How far can we now go?

November 11th v West Midlands (Home) - Armistice Day - after observing a 2 minutes silence and a few appropriate words from visiting captain Chris Willies, the match got underway with the expectation of improving substantially on the previous encounter. There was even talk of the possibility of a second seasons win if things went well.  Well, its good to have expectations but the match ended with another defeat - but  not by much 17-23 and by 11 shots, 175-186.

In the SINGLES, David recovered from 2-9 down against Craig Strong to go into the last end with a 1 shot advantage. However Mr. Strong picked up a 2 to win by 13-12. Ben meanwhile took 2 points off Chris Willies with a decisive 20-7 victory. In the second session, Ben also went down to Craig 11-16 having been 8-2 up at the halfway point. David kept in touch against CW and with a deficit of only 4 on the last end it looked like the aggregate (bonus points) would come our way. However a fine final wood from Chris clinched a 3 and a 16-9 win and the bonus was shared - 1 more point.

Both PAIRS had a good day (in spite of  WM binging in England's Jon Pitcher and Simon Willies), with wins of 18-8 and 18-12 for Richard and Francis and 12-9 and 23-14 for Sean and Roger - a full house of 10 points.

2 more points came in the TRIPLES after Jacinta, Pat and Megan put a decisive 2-15 defeat by veteran Malcolm Follis behind them to win their second game by an equally decisive 17-4. 

Similarly, in the FOURS, although suffering a 3-13 defeat in their second game, Rose, Paul, Bryan and Pat had started the day by picking up 2 points in their first game with a 7-5 win.


So, with our last group game to come against Cheshire a big score is required to reach 100. No problem!


October 21st v West Midlands (Away) - The team made their way through foggy conditions to the Tamworth IBC (in use temporarily as the Erdington venue was unavailable) for their last away fixture of the season but our first against the brummies.  With 5 former National title holders and 3 members of the current England squad (2 recently selected for the British Isle team) this was never going to be an easy fixture. We had also been "warned" that we would be up against a noisy side that were not averse to some friendly "intimidation". In the event, we found a side who were confident of their own prowess and vociferously supportive of each other as the games progressed. For those easily distracted this may have posed a problem but for most the answer was just to focus on the job in hand and play bowls!

Enough of the comment - how did we fare? Maybe not as well as we should have done with a final tally of only 9 points when we could have been expecting 14 or 16.

In the SINGLES David had chances against Craig Strong but could never make the breakthrough, losing 9-14. Ben however, having slipped to 2-10 down, won 7 of the next 8 ends to pick up 2 points winning 17-12. However neither could make any impression against Chris Willies who justified his BI selection with 20-7 and 22-8 wins.

In the PAIRS, Francis & Richard conceded too many 2's and 3's in their first game, losing 8-20 but contained the opposition better in their second, still losing 10-15. Sean & Roger had a good day - decent consistent drawing from Roger and some fine running shots from Sean when needed gave them two wins, 14-9 and 16-11 and 4 points.

In the TRIPLES, Simon's trio had a disastrous start going 0-11 down after 4 ends. However they rallied well winning 6 of the remaining 7 ends, just losing 11-12. In the second game, the wheels came right off  resulting in a 22-2 defeat. Gareth's trio started well in both games. In the first, a 9-3 lead with 3 ends remaining slipped away after the WM picked up a 3, 3 and 1 to win 10-9 whilst in the second they managed an 8-8 draw having been 8-4 up with 4 ends to go - 1 point.

In the FOURS, a 5-2 lead after 5 ends for Jo's rink  turned into a 5-8 defeat but in their second game they clocked up a 9-7 win giving us our final 2 points. In her first game, Rose's four never capitalised on a 3 off the first end, losing 4, 1, 3, 2 on the next four ends to go 10-3 down with 4 ends remaining. They rallied a little but lost 8-11 whilst in their second game, they rued the 5 they dropped on the first end, losing 7-10.  


Maybe the lessons to be learnt from this match (and indeed the last one) are that 'damage limitation' is as important as winning shots. Once you have a lead.....hang on to it. Let's see what we can now do on November 11th.   

October 7th v Shropshire (Away) - Although not at full strength, the Shropshire side still fielded 9 of their "top 10" including  Nationals title holders Alan & Chris Williams, Alan Jones, Warwick France and Martin Simcock. In addition, the side was bolstered by past World Singles Champion, Chris Grocott recalled from semi-retirement. For our part, the Jones's and Sean Conroy were otherwise engaged but were ably replaced by Lesley and Robert Harris and 14 years old Megan Holtby.

Our score came mainly from the SINGLES and PAIRS. In both disciplines there were 2 wins and 2 losses but enough was done to also claim the aggregates giving 12 valuable points.  Shropshire had put their "aces" into the TRIPLES and FOURS but never the less, Jo Newsome's Rink and Simon Holtby's trio picked up 2 points apiece. Captain Rose Haynes' Rink had two good chances to score with points level in both games coming to the final end, which unfortunately went to Shropshire leaving Rose with nothing to show for the days work.  Gareth Townend's triples were 6-3 up at the halfway mark  in their first game but let it slip to lose 7-11 whilst in their second, they conceded three 4's to make a positive result too difficult.

All in all a satisfactory outing which gave us 16 points and a shot difference of +5.

Now then........did somebody say West Midlands were struggling!! Ear plugs at the ready for 2 weeks time.

September 23rd v Shropshire (Home) - That's a bit better! A convincing performance by Ben and David in the SINGLES against Alan Jones and Chris Williams (2012 National Pairs Champion) was worth 9 points whilst in the TRIPLES, Simon, Jayne and Andrew put a 4-15 defeat in their first game (against Nick Tideswell - the other 2012 Pairs Champion) behind them to win their second game by 16-2 which, together with a win and a draw from Gareth, Jacinta and Pat, gave us another 7 points. 4 more points came from Sean and Roger in the PAIRS plus a win for Rose, Paul, Pat and Bryan in the FOURS was enough to claim a narrow match WIN - hopefully not our last.  The Shropshire side was somewhat weakened by absentees lured away to big money end of season Crown Green events but nevertheless their "top 10" players were all present so this was no hollow victory.

September 16th v Cheshire (Away) - The County 'A' team's run of 19 consecutive games (2 years) without a defeat came dramatically, if not unexpectedly, to an end today at the hands of Cheshire. Looking for a higher level of competition than that provided in the NESMBA league, and a new challenge, Rose's merry band got just that. Cheshire showed just why they have been National ICC (Premier) Champions for the last 6 years by only conceding 6 points and convincingly defeating us by 235 shots to 124. They have strength and skill in depth (and also a few tricky mats to throw us off course) and this historic game (our first ever in the ICC) was somewhat of a baptism of fire.  However we look forward to a better result when they visit us to play on our own very friendly surfaces just before Christmas.

Our 3 (narrow) wins came from Jo Newsome's FOUR (vet Derek Beardsley and 'new boys' James Clark and Matthew Jackson - both England U21s) 8-7; Simon Holtby's TRIPLE (Jayne Rudd and Andrew Mather) 11-7 and Gareth Townend's TRIPLE (Jacinta Townend and Pat Beardsley) 11-10. Unfortunately, even the experience of World Pairs Champions David Newsome and Ben Render (playing Singles) were to no avail and some of our other defeats do not bear mentioning.  

Are we downhearted? Not at all - this is what we are after and if the quote in this years Handbook means what it says, we will bounce back and improve as time goes by. "Winning is great, but the secret is learning how to lose. Nobody goes undefeated all the time. If you can pick up after a crushing defeat, an go on to win again, you are going to be a champion someday". Now let's see what we can do against Shropshire next week!

**For the latest ESMBA ICC results see **


Last updated on JAN 14 at 5.50pm



Points Shots for Shots against
Sep 16 CHESHIRE AWAY  Lost 6-34 124-245 6 124 245
Sep 23 SHROPSHIRE HOME  Won 22-18 181-167 28 305 412
Oct 7 SHROPSHIRE AWAY  Lost 16-24 165-160 44 470 572
Oct 21 WEST MIDLANDS AWAY  Lost 9-31 148-211 53 618 783
Nov 11 WEST MIDLANDS HOME  Lost 17-23 175-186 70 793 969
Dec 16 CHESHIRE HOME  Won 25-15 183-169 95 976 1138
Jan 12/13 CORNWALL ICC Prelim  Lost 18-22 159-176 113 1135 1314
Feb 23/24 KO Q-Finals Next year?          
Mar 2/3 KO S-Finals Next year?          
Mar 10 Finals Next year?          

March 3 v Humberside A (Home) A disappointing result to end the season with considering the draw obtained in their last match when playing the same team away on their home turf. The SINGLES failed to score although two of their games were only lost by 2 shots.  Both the PAIRS and FOURS picked up 1 win each (4 points)  - Lesley & Robert Harris with a 15-9 win after just losing their first game by a single shot and Alan Banthorpe, Mick Ridge, Barry Simmonite and Joyce Hughes with a 16-7 victory. However, in the TRIPLES Anne Ridge and Jim & Jean Weatherill won both their games with a shot difference of +16 which also helped them secure the Pairs aggregate after Dennis Jarvis went down by 10 shots. Their 6 points made the final score 10-30 (-33 shots).

Feb 10 v Humberside A (Away) - The team seems to be finding some form at last, securing another good result - a draw to Humberside 'A' on their own turf. The SINGLES had their best match yet  with two draws and a win to net 4 points. (Another 3 shots by both players in their drawn games would have doubled that tally!) The PAIRS continued their steady season and also netted 4 points, but again, another 6 shots overall would have secured the aggregate as well. Although the TRIPLES have seen more changes to their line-up than any of the other disciplines, they picked up  a full house of 10 points and have now contributed more points overall than any of the others (38 out of 105). The FOURS went down by 20 shots overall but  never the less added another 2 points. Final result 20-20 (-4 shots).

Feb 3 - v West Yorkshire A (Home) - At last - a match win and against one of the top contenders in Division 1. The visiting team were hoping for a strong result to put them back up near the top of the table but it was not be with our team putting in their strongest performance of the season. This was in spite of no points from the SINGLES who went down by 31 shots overall. A valiant effort from Jill in the final match against Steve Packer was thwarted by a fine final wood from Steve who trailed the jack to pick up the 3 shots he needed to win 17-16. Unlucky Jill.  The PAIRS had a great day collecting a full house of 10 points (+35 shots) whilst both the TRIPLES (+15 shots) and FOURS (+17 shots) each conceded a single game to collect 8 points each. Final result 26-14 (+36 shots).  

Dec 16 v Derbyshire (Away) - It is probably fair to say that Derbyshire are probably past their peak (league winners in 2006 and 2007) but are still a strong team to contend with on their home turf. And so it proved as they restricted our team to just four game wins and a draw. In the SINGLES there were no points to be had although Jill Newsome only lost to Ross Martell by a single shot 10-11. The PAIRS picked up 2 points thanks to a 13-10 win by George McDowell and Keith Hughes. The TRIPLES each had one good win - Anne Ridge, Barry Simmonite and Lucy Hubbard 17-6 and Jim & Jean Weatherill and Harry Welch 15-5 and this added a further 4 points but the aggregate was just out of reach at 41-46 shots. The FOURS came closer losing out by just 27-30 shots but Hilda, Eli, Stan and Colin had a 12-8 win for 2 points whilst Alan, Mick, Ken and Joyce gained 1 point with a 7-7 draw.  

Nov 25 v Derbyshire (Home) - The best result of the season so far (just) thanks largely to a full house of 10 points from the TRIPLES. In these Dennis Jarvis with Harry Welch and Doreen Sorely started with a very convincing 20-2 win followed by another in their second session of 10-5, whilst their colleagues Barry Simmonite, Lucy Hubbard and Anne Ridge won both their tight games by a single shot, 7-6 and 11-10. 2 more points came with an 8-5 win in the FOURS from Eli, Ken, Stan and Colin with the remaining 4 points down to two wins from the Harris's in the PAIRS. At the halfway point the team now have 50 points but with only 6 of these coming from the aggregates.   

Nov 11 v Staffordshire (Away) - Another tough game resulting in only 3 wins. One of these was in the FOURS where Hilda, Eli, Stan and Colin had a 9-5 victory after losing their first game by a single shot 9-10. The PAIRS produced the other 2 wins - one for the Harris's 15-6 and one for George and Keith 21-9 and this combined effort also gained them the 2 aggregate pairs points by 62-47 shots.  The SINGLES and TRIPLES had a disappointing day losing all games and going down 34-69 and 18-76 respectively.

Oct 28 v West Yorkshire A (Away) - The Harris's returned to the team in the PAIRS just losing their first game 12-13 but picking up 2 points in their second with a good 18-7 win over Royston Lewis and Glen Scott. The only other points came in the SINGLES where Arthur Jackson narrowly beat Steve Packer 13-12 but could not quite do the same to Darren Cookson losing by the same one shot margin. 3 of the 4 TRIPLES games were lost by just 2 shots and one of the Fours by a single shot. However, unfortunately you do not score points by "just losing" and the final result could be viewed as disappointing with only 4 points gained overall.

Oct 15 v STOCKPORT (Home) - Same opposition as first match but this time on home turf with an expected improved result. The Pairs had a bad day losing all games and going down by 39 shots. The SINGLES, TRIPLES and FOURS picked up 4 match points each and with the added bonus of the aggregate 2 in the Singles, the match ended 14-26. Best performance of the day was Hilda Thomas, Eli Beardmore, Stan Spencer and Colin Stevens who won both their games.   

Oct 7 v STOCKPORT (Away) - Like the 'A' team, the season started with what may prove to be the toughest game of the season - away to Stockport - the Division 1 runners up for the last 2 years. The 8 points gained came equally from each discipline. In the SINGLES, Jill Newsome had a narrow 12-11 win over Geoff Griffiths. Keith Hughes & George McDowell drew both their games in the PAIRS. In the TRIPLES, Dennis Jarvis, Dennis Mather and Pat Adams had a good day winning their first game 13-7 and only just losing their second 11-12 whilst in the FOURS, Alan Banthorpe, Eli Beardmore, Stan Spencer and Colin Steven had a 14-11 victory in their second game.    

 **For the latest NESMBA IC league tables go to NESMBA **


Last updated on FEB 11 at 11.20pm



Points Shots for Shots against
Oct 7 STOCKPORT AWAY Lose 8-32 142-218 8 142 218
Oct 13 STOCKPORT HOME Lose 14-26 149-202 22 291 420
Oct 28 W YORKSHIRE A AWAY Lose 4-36 145-212 26 436 632
Nov 11 STAFFORDSHIRE AWAY Lose 8-32 139-229 34 575 861
Nov 25 DERBYSHIRE HOME Lose 16-24 160-177 50 735 1038
Dec 16 DERBYSHIRE AWAY Lose 9-31 145-198 59 880 1236
Jan 20 STAFFORDSHIRE HOME cancelled        
Feb 3 W YORKSHIRE A HOME Win 26-14 204-168 85 1084 1404
Feb 10 HUMBERSIDE A AWAY Draw 20-20 170-174 105 1254 1578
Mar 3 HUMBERSIDE A HOME Lose 10-30 154-187 115 1408 1765


FRIENDLY MATCH  v  HUMBERSIDE 'B' - (March 3rd 2013). With a view to launching a 3rd county team (our 'C' team) for entry into next years NESMBA IC league competition, Pete Render from Crossgates had been asked to set up a friendly match to gauge the level of interest and support. Pete had organised this against the Humberside 'B' team (currently lying 2nd in Division 2) and those taking part were in the main players who had attended the "Practice Day" at the beginning of the season together with some of the North Yorkshire 'B' team squad. The match was played away at Humberside's North Cave venue to the normal IC format. Points were picked up in all disciplines with the two young Singles players, Danny Langdon and Josh Burrow remaining undefeated and contributing 9 of the final total of 17 points. Although Humberside won this match, the final score was a very encoraging 17-23 (165-183). The NYSMBA committee will now have to decide whether there will be enough commitment to fulfil a complete season of 8 or 10 fixtures (depending on the size of Division 2) before finally applying to enter another team into the league.

COUNTY TEAMS PRACTICE DAY - (Saturday September 15) - This day served several purposes. For the 'A' team, which had seen some changes in their fixed format line-up, it was an opportunity of practicing in their new disciplines and getting to know their new playing partners. With their first game scheduled for the following  day, it was also essential to get back into "short mat mode" for the majority who had seen little or nothing of indoor bowling  since last season. For the 'B' team it was also an opportunity for the Captain/Vice Captain to try out various combinations before finalising their line-up for their first game in 3 weeks time and even though many 'B' team players play throughout the summer - all additional practice is useful. Finally, all clubs had been canvassed for the names of players who would be interested in playing for a potential 'C' team and those that could were invited to attend. The day consisted of about 8 bowling sessions of varying lengths (with a lunchtime break) and players played in a rota of mixed games involving both teams and the potential 'C' team players.

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