BOWLS: Spalding beaten in Yetton Trophy final

England senior vice-president Margaret Allen presenting the runners-up trophy
England senior vice-president Margaret Allen presenting the runners-up trophy
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Spalding missed out in Sunday’s final of the national women’s inter-club championship as St Neots went home with the Yetton Trophy.

While St Neots fielded the newly-crowned national women’s indoor singles champion Michelle Barlow, one of Spalding’s skips was Annie Dunham who won that title in 2016 and the WIBC world mixed pairs title earlier this month.

Barlow and Dunham - who is seven months pregnant - had both skipped a rink for England in last month’s home international series in Belfast where a number of Spalding’s young team were in the England squad.

A strange final turned out to be a game of two halves - St Neots dominating proceedings on the left side of the green and Spalding having the edge on the right-hand side.

Barlow skipped her St Neots rink to a 22-7 win and June George’s quartet won 21-9 against Dunham on rinks three and four.

Meanwhile, Spalding rinks skipped by Gloria Haney and Chelsea Tomlin chalked up wins of 23-15 and 23-8 respectively on rinks six and seven.

Spalding v St Neots

Spalding v St Neots

Trailing by two shots overall, Spalding looked to have the winning post in their sights when Haney’s rink held three shots on the penultimate end.

But Hayley Felce, whose daughters Emma and Hannah were also in the team, drew a brilliant shot so St Neots led 65-62 with just one end to play.

June George, skipping against Dunham, was the one who made sure that Spalding’s chances of making three to tie or four to win were virtually nil - her last bowl on the last end taking the shot.

Final: St Neots 66 Spalding 62

Spalding

Spalding

Rink scores (St Neots skips first): Rebecca Moorbey, Lesley Wood, Emma Felce, Michelle Barlow 22, Freda Lyon. Maisie Belding, Betty Deaton, Sylvia Wade 7; Rebecca Thatcher, Robyn Hall, Wendy Hayden, June George 21, Pat Crampton, Judy Jackson, Rebecca Simpson, Annie Dunham 9; Hannah Felce, Sandra Baxter, Bev Thatcher, Hayley Felce 15, Danielle Wild, Val Bowker, Barbara Hurst, Gloria Haney 23; Christine Goodwin, Veronica Brown, Sally Anstee, Hazel Wright 8, Ruby Hill, Gill Needham, Louise Catchpole, Chelsea Tomlin 23.

In the semi-final,Spalding shared the rinks honours - two apiece - with the 2008 champions North Wilts but the scale of the winning margins on two rinks gave them a convincing 78-54 victory.

Hill, Needham, Catchpole and Tomlin led a North Wilts rink skipped by the normally dependable Fizz Mace by just two shots after 13 ends - but finished in style with a 4-3-5-2-4 sequence (18 shots without reply) and returned a handsome 29-9 scorecard.

Crampton, Jackson, Simpson and Dunham led Sue Cooke’s rink 8-7 after eight ends but also finished with a flourish, scoring a treble and a five on the last two ends to win 21-9.

Photos courtesy of David Rhys Jones and EIBA

Photos courtesy of David Rhys Jones and EIBA

Semi final: Spalding 78 North Wilts 54

Rink scores (Spalding names first): Freda Lyon. Maisie Belding, Betty Deaton, Sylvia Wade 13, Molly Manning, Brabra Shepheard, Viv Baskerville, Jean Collier 20; Pat Crampton, Judy Jackson, Rebecca Simpson, Annie Dunham 21, Carol Massey, Karen Funnell, Irene Button, Sue Cooke 9; Danielle Wild, Val Bowker, Barbara Hurst, Gloria Haney 15, Ann Roberts-Phare, Jane Taylor, Janet Hardie, Alex Jacobs 16; Ruby Hill, Gill Needham, Louise Catchpole, Chelsea Tomlin 29, Margaret Cooke, Jan Toombs, Wendy Ivory, Fizz Mace 9.