BOWLERS in the Stamford and District Bowls League have captured seven county titles to secure places in the English Bowling Federation finals at Skegness in August.
The Northants Bowling Federation Championships finals were staged at Blackstones in Stamford on Sunday when Adam Warrington from the host club earned his fourth successive two-wood singles title and then went on to win the Champion of Champions singles.
In the two-bowl singles, against the former Langtoft bowler Paul Dalliday (Whittlesey Manor), who had earlier won the four-bowl event, Warrington edged home 21-17.
But as the pace of the green speeded up in the warm sunshine and in the event for the county’s 2011 club champions, he showed no mercy against Robert Heath from Yaxley. Warrington romped home 21-6 in little more than an hour.
Langtoft’s Helen Crow, however, just failed to make it a “singles double” in the women’s events. She beat Joan Robinson 21-15 in the four-bowl competition then lost 18-21 to Sheila Craig, also from Peterborough.
Empingham Bowls Club have two players through to the national finals.
Mike Ramsden finally achieved his dream to compete at Skegness when he overpowered Whittlesey Town’s Neil Boon 21-7 in the Secretaries Singles.
Then it was the turn of 15-year-old Stephen Harris to claim a place in the under 25 singles. The Stamford Queen Eleanor School pupil had earlier paired up with Blackstones’ Jon Bailey in the junior pairs and lost out to Joe Randall and James Harford 13-20.
But showing great maturity, learned from the defeat, kept up the pressure and finally toppled Randall 21-13.
In the veterans pairs Ketton’s Peter Edwards and Albert Horton were aiming to defend their county title but came up against Mick Linnell (West Ward) in sparkling form, alongside his partner Ken Smith.
They looked to have forced an extra end, until Linnell rolled his final red bowl to within a couple of inches of the jack to secure the win 17-15.
When illness forced Great Casterton’s Barrie Plowman to pull out at the 11th hour, his wife Pam drafted in Andy Shaw as an able substitute for the veterans mixed pairs. It proved a lethal combination and earned a narrow 20-15 victory over Ketton’s Jan and Dougie Want.
Dougie, however, was determined to earn a return visit to Skegness and combined with Alan Pearce and Bob Warters to claim the two-bowl triples title over the fancied Whittlesey Manor rink of Paul Dalliday, Colin Brown and Martin Welsford.
And the Ketton trio never relaxed their iron grip on the game - their opponents finally conceding 24-3 with still three ends to play.