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Harris moves step closer to retaining county title

Stephen Harris - county finalist again.
Stephen Harris - county finalist again.

Stamford’s Stephen Harris moved a step nearer to retaining his Lincolnshire IBA four-bowl singles title when on his home surface in the county semi-finals he overwhelmed Lincoln’s Sam Ashton 23-6.

In the finals at Louth on Sunday, April 22, Harris will play Graham Smith (Spalding) - the current national two bowl singles champion – who beat Jonathan West (Boston) 21-16.

Harris never allowed his opponent to settle and built up a 14-2 lead, scoring 11 shots without reply from the fifth end with immaculate drawing.

Ashton responded with three singles but nine further shots including a full house put the 20-year-old beyond reach.

Also reaching the county finals are Christine Ford and Martyn Dolby whom, after trailing Rachel Stanley and Simon Reeson (Louth) early on, ran out winners 21-12.

The turning point came at the 12th of the 18 ends with a string of four, two, two, two finally clinching it with a three count on the final end.

Unfortunately Stamford chairman Keith Rippin failed to rediscover the form that had earned him a place in the semi-finals of the Over 60 singles and Lincoln veteran George Draper ran away an 18-7 winner.

Draper, who will play Trevor Bannister (Sleaford) in the final, also won his pairs with Ashton 21-12 over fellow Lincoln bowlers James Staples and Tony Conroy.

They will play Danny Brown and Billy Jackson in the final, the Lincoln pair overcoming Andy Reeson and Richard Vinter (Boston) 15-10.

The Lincolnshire IBA and competition secretary Simon Reeson wishes to acknowledge the support of Stamford IBC who supplied all the volunteer singles markers under the guidance of acting umpire Mal Smith.


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