Huge honour for hosts of national finals
Spalding Indoor Bowls Club are the proud hosts of the national under-25 singles finals over the weekend of January 25 and 26.
They have prided themselves on their junior section and have had a number of young men and women represent England so to hold such a prestigious event is quite an honour for the club.
There will be some local interest as Spalding’s Stephen Harris and Ruby Hill - both junior and senior internationals - have qualified in the men’s and women’s events respectively.
Joining them will be Sleaford’s David Bristow so there will be plenty for the local supporters to cheer on.
The last person to win the men’s event from Lincolnshire was Dean Tute from Lincoln back in 2009 while you have to go as far back as 2007 when Spalding’s Annie Dunham won the women’s event.
Hill qualified to this stage of the competition last season before losing out to the eventual winner in the semi-final.
In the last 16, Harris will play Lloyd Sabatini from Berkshire and Hill takes on Ellie Hamblett from Barwell.
Defending national and British Isles champions Connor Cinato and Devon Cooper have also qualified, as well as some of the country’s top young bowlers.
On the Saturday, play will start at 10am while on the Sunday, the semi-finals will take place at 9.30am before the final at 12.30pm.
Meanwhile, there were mixed emotions for Spalding as the men progressed to the national quarter-final of the Denny Plate while the women lost out in the last 16 of the Yetton Trophy.
In the Denny Plate, Spalding’s men were probably favourites going into the match and showed their class before closing out a comfortable 105-69 win.
Spalding stamped their authority from the outset and were 25-15 up by five ends which was extended to 55-40 at 10 ends and 76-57 at 15 ends before accelerating to their 36-shot win.
They won on all rinks but an impressive 29-15 victory for the away rink skipped by Andy Dunham with Nick Wilkie, John Needham and Martin Simpson led the way.
Spalding will play last season’s finalists Blackpool Newton Hall on Saturday.
Rink scores: home - Matt Whyers, Steve Hill, Simon Lilley and Graham Smith won 23-18; Harry Mycock, Rhys Hill, Maurice Elding and Martin Spencer won 28-18; away - Brian Martin, Nigel Eagle, Stephen Harris and Jordan Philpott won 25-18; Nick Wilkie, John Needham, Martin Simpson and Andy Dunham won 29-15.
In the Yetton Trophy, Spalding’s women found it tough going against 2012 and 2013 national champions Lincoln.
Rink scores: home - Ann Newbury, Barbara Hurst, Lauren Finbow and Annie Dunham won 16-11; Jean Patterson, Judy Jackson, Ruby Hill and Chelsea Tomlin lost 15-18; away - Freda Lyon, Tracy Philpott, Maisie Belding and Betty Deaton lost 15-37; Jan Sinclair, Karen Martin, Pearl O’Brien and Gill Needham drew 16-16.
Spalding over-60s won on three of the five available rinks against Boston. The overall points score was 14-4 in a final scoreline of 103-99.
Spalding’s friendly bowlers won on five of the six rinks and overall by 45 shots (122-77) at home to a team of Perkins Retired bowlers.