27th August 2016 - HOUGHTON DUO MISS OUT

The latter stages of this seasons Champion of Champions have been taking place this week, the main final will see Silksworth’s David Bolt look to become the first player to notch four successes the first being 22 years ago against Houghton Town’s Paul Wallace who will be looking to record his first. In the quarter finals on a rock hard Barnes West End green Bolt defeated Roker Park’s Arthur Hall 21-4 while Wallace received a walk over due to Seaham’s Bryan Henderson (jnr) playing at Skegness in the EBF’s finals. The semi-finals were held in trying conditions at Washington Glebe whereby Bolt secured a final spot with a 21-12 win over host clubs Malcom Thomson while Wallace had to hold his nerve for a hard fought 21-16 win over Hetton Workmen’s Chris Fish. In the seniors competition this year’s final will see Thompson Park’s Dennis Hulley look to repeat his 2002 success against Barnes West End’s Richie Jobling (pictured right) who will be looking to take the title for the first time. In the quarter finals at Barnes Park Hulley defeated Hetton’s Albie Cullen 21-16 before fightback form 20-14 down in the semi-finals against Washington Glebe’s Trevor Joicey to win 21-20. Jobling’s route to the final was a hard fought quarter final 21-15 win over Seaham Town’s Mal Baker followed by a 21-6 win over Houghton Town’s Alan Wilkinson who struggled with the conditions. Both finals are due to take place at Houghton Dairy Lane. The final of the Silver Jacks between Houghton Dairy Lanes Joe Sutherland & Alan J Dunn and Silksworth’s Jaxon McKenna & Billy Ferry did well to last two ends until the heavy rain brought proceedings to a halt; the final is due to take place at the same time as the Champion of Champion finals at Dairy Lane.

As the season enters its final few weeks the Sunderland & District leagues are reaching the crunch time, having already secured the Earl Cup title Houghton Dairy Lane are set to clinch a third consecutive Swan Cup title, victories over Barnes Park and Seaham Town will seal a first ever domestic double for Dairy Lane, bottom of the table Houghton Town kept alive there hopes of avoiding the drop with a cracking 5-2 win at Roker Marine, South Hylton need results to go there way and beat Barnes West End to have any chance of getting out of trouble. In Division 2 Hetton Workmen’s 7-0 home win over Roker Park ensured they go up as champions while it also ended Roker’s slim hopes of sneaking into the second promotion spot, Usworth take the second spot. In the Harold Howey Barnes West End have ended a 22 year wait for a second Howey title as they cannot be caught at the top, long time leaders Thompson Park B who were unbeaten for 10 games have dropped to third, with Dawdon already relegated Washington A kept their very slim hopes alive with a 3-1 win over third bottom Thompson Park A although the latter do have a better shot difference. The top two met in Division three as Hylton CW A defeated Washington B 3-1 to go level on points with Washington, Houghton Town A’s 4-0 loss at Sunderland B means only North Biddick B can stop the top two from getting promoted although the top two only need appoint from their final games against Hetton Park and Pemberton B respectively.

This week the National Championships at Leamington Spa will enter its third week with the majority of ladies competitions having been completed. In the ladies pairs the Houghton Dairy Lane duo of Susan Forster and Joan Rodgerson recorded wins over Oxfordshire’s Pam Shepherd 21-9, Suffolk’s Julie Spice 21-12 and then Hampshire’s Viv Mansell 23-16 to set up a semi-final against Devon’s international duo Sophie Tolchard & Natalie Chestney. Sadly the Dairy Lane duo missed a cracking chance of reaching the final, after racing into 10-1 lead and 13-7 after 11 ends the semi-final slipped away from them as a 15-2 return over the next 10 ends in the Devon pairs favour sealed a 22-15 defeat for Forster & Rodgerson, the fact the Devon pair went onto to win the final will be scant consolation for the Dairy Lane pair. The other local hope Elm Tree’s Lisa Simpson reached the third round before losing to Hampshire 22-18. Durham County ladies suffered Walker Cup semi-final heartache as they were beaten 37-32 by Devon, Gill Jones steered her quartet which included Forster & Rodgerson to a 17-17 draw however Ann Anderson’s rink was always playing catch up and finished 20-15 down. The spotlight turned to the men’s finals last weekend, in the senior pairs Houghton’s Jimmy McKinney & John Thurlbeck’s hopes were dashed at the first hurdle as they were beaten 19-12 by Norfolk’s Tom Dunton. In the four the Silksworth quartet of Kevin Donkin (sub), Stevie Cairns, Billy Ferry and Gary Farquhar opened up with a 23-20 win over Buckinghamshire’s Richard Reid before going out in the next round 24-14 to Devon’s James Webber, the other Durham hope was Stockton’s Paul Mosley however they suffered a 28-13 first round defeat. Silksworth’s Jaxon McKenna’s hopes of a junior singles title were dashed at the first hurdle after a 21-14 defeat at the hands of Hampshire’s Daniel Taylor, there was also no joy for Darlington RA’s Barry Hopkin’s after a second round 21-6 loss. Both local hopes in the triples made first round exits, Dairy Lanes Colin Brown, David Armstrong and Dan Todner were beaten 24-6 by Suffolk’s former internationalist Mark Royal while Hartlepool’s Dale Oram was beaten 19-12. This week in the singles Silksworth’s David Bolt will look to repeat his 2011 National title success; in the first round Bolt faces a tricky opener against Herefordshire’s Ryan Atkins 


Houghton Dairy Lane hosted the final of this season’s Burkett Shield, the final was an all Seaham Town affair as Matty Henderson, Alistair Meek and David Wright took on Bryan Henderson (jnr), Mal Baker and Brian Henderson (snr) pictured right. The early exchanges saw Henderson open up a 7-3 lead before  Wright levelled the scores with a four on the 8th end. With Wright producing some quality bowls the underdogs went into a 11-9 lead with only four ends to play, Henderson however hit back with a four to lead 13-11 and going into the final end Wright needed a two to force an extra end, however Henderson controlled the final end and ran out a 15-12 winner. This was the Seaham club’s first Burkett success, also part of the winning squad was Michael Lowis who featured in an early round.

The Silver Jack’s quarter finals and semi-finals were completed this week as Dairy Lane’s Joe Sutherland & Alan J Dunn and Silksworth’s Jaxon McKenna & Billy Ferry secured places in this season’s final. Roker Park hosted the quarter finals, holders John Smith & Fred Knubley (Roker Marine) looked set for a semi-final spot as they led Thompson Park’s John Horton & Dennis Hulley 13-3 with only seven ends left however the Thompson Park pair produced a stunning comeback to secure a 20-17 win, David Bolt subbed for Ian Riches and alongside Neal Ridley won an all Silksworth affair against Gary McPeators 26-12, Billy Ferry also won another all Silksworth affair 18-12 against Terry Todd, the remaining quarter final saw Dairy Lane’s Alan J Dunn recover from 11-6 down to snatch a last end 13-12 win over Marine’s Alan Middleton. The semi-finals were played on a holding Washington Glebe green, McKenna & Ferry led 17-8 against Horton & Hulley and despite a late charge by Hulley it was Ferry who held on for a 20-16 win. The other tie saw Dunn race into a 10-1 lead over Bolt who was always playing catch up before shaking hands at 24-12, the final will be played at Dairy Lane.

Houghton Dairy Lane completed a twelve match unbeaten Earl Cup campaign with a 6-1 win at neighbours Houghton Town, the win means Dairy Lane finish 13 points clear of holders Silksworth with Marine back in third, Thompson Park and Seaham Town are relegated.
Earl Cup standings -  Houghton DL 73, Silksworth 54, Roker Marine 37½, Barnes Park 35½, Houghton Town 30, Thompson Park 23, Seaham Town 20

In Division Two both promotion places had already been decided however Hetton Workmen’s go up as champions by two points from Barnes West End. South Hylton’s 6-1 win at North Biddick kept them up and relegated Biddick who will be joined by Sunderland in Division Three.
Division Two standings – Hetton Workmen’s 63, Barnes West End 61, Hylton CW 39½, South Hylton 39, Usworth 37½, North Biddick 31, Sunderland 23

In the Third Division Whitburn go up as champions with Roker Park as runners up, the result of the week was Grindon Mill’s 5-2 win over the newly crowned champions.

The Swan Cup title destination edged a little nearer to Dairy Lane as the top two both recorded 6-1 wins, the leaders and holders Dairy Lane maintained their three point lead over Silksworth with a 6-1 win at relegation threatened South Hylton while Silksworth defeated another relegated threatened side North Biddick, the battle to avoid the drop took another twist as Seaham Town beat Houghton Town 6½-½ to leap frog them and out of the relegation area. In Division Two Usworth’s 6-1 home win over Hylton Colliery moved them to the top as leader Hetton Workmen had a bye. Third placed Roker Park’s promotion hopes took a knock as they went down 5-2 at Washington.

Champion of Champions Results – J.Richardson (RM) 21 V.Hendry (RY) 17, A.Hall (RP) 21 A.Hill (BP) 20, F.Froud (BWE) 13 P.Wallace (HT) 21, R.Craggs (WH) 11 C.Fish (HW) 21
Seniors Results – R.Craggs (WH) 13 JA.Smith (RM) 21, D.Gibson (SU) 18 R.Moorhead (DA), M.Wright (BP) 10 A.Wilkinson (HT)

The Quarter finals of both competitions take place at Barnes Park on Tuesday 6.30pm

The SWBA Champion of Champions final takes place on Monday (1.30pm) at Barnes Park, the final will see the host clubs Margaret Eggleston take on Sunderland’s Durham county lead Jean Graham. In the semi-finals Eggleston defeated Whitburn’s Florence Rodenby 21-16 while Graham defeated Ryhope’s Brenda Forrest 21-13.

The final of the ladies Town Singles was played at Barnes Park this week, the title went to Ryhope’s Brenda Forrest after a 21-15 win over Whitburn’s Anne Raine.

Roker Park will again host the Jeff Wilson sponsored Ladies Pairs competition, the action starts at 10am on Wednesday with the latter stages taking place the following week.

Hopes of clinching funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund to help redevelop Roker Park including the bowling clubhouse’s were dashed as more than £30.7m were awarded to 16 UK parks, locally South Shield’s North Marine Park was awarded £2.6m.        

There was National success for the region at the National Championships at Leamington Spa, in the ladies Senior Singles Darlington Woodland’s Ann Anderson put together four wins to reach the final against Berkshire’s Bet Aubrey, happily for Anderson there was no repeat of the final defeat in 2008 as the Woodland player ran out a very impressive 21-4 winner in only 14 ends. In the main competitions the Durham qualifiers have struggled to reach the latter stages, in the triples Dairy Lane’s Joan Rodgerson won there preliminary tie before going out 22-20 to Kent’s Jean Phillips, the other Durham hope Elm Tree’s Lisa Simpson also made a first round exit. In the Two Bowl singles Houghton Town’s Ellen Faith was beaten 17-10 by Somerset’s Katie Herbison in the first round however Lyndhurst’s Sandra Hind manged a couple of wins before going out 16-13 to Northants Alison Dring. The final of the two team event’s saw Kent beat Lincolnshire 121-116 to take the John’s Trophy while the Middleton Cup went to Devon after a 115-104 win over Kent.

World Bowls has submitted its recognition request file to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) sports department. Acceptance by the IOC would pave the way for potential inclusion at the Olympic Games in future.Lawn bowls is already an established event at the Commonwealth Games, but the sport's efforts for IOC recognition were previously hindered by a requirement for 75 affiliated countries.This has recently been lowered to just 50 nations, however, to give World Bowls the option of applying.Bowls has been a Commonwealth Games sport since the inaugural edition of the event's precursor, the 1930 British Empire Games. It is a core sport and must be included in the sporting programme of each edition of the Games. 

13th August 2016 - WEST END 3-2-1 KINGS AGAIN

The final of this season’s Sunderland & District 3-2-1 knock out triples was a repeat of last year’s final as holders Barnes West End took on Roker Marine at Houghton Dairy Lane, in last year’s final West End cruised to a 46 shot win and history repeated itself albeit the winning margin was smaller. Across the green West End had three winning rinks, Brian Sanderson defeated Alan Middleton 65-43, Bobby Alexander beat Fred Knubley 62-46 and Frankie Froud beat Stevie Don 56-52, the only Marine success saw Bobby Graham beat Richie Jobling 61-47 however it didn't stop West retaining the shield by 28 shots overall. Next year West End will attempt to match Usworth’s feat in the 90’s of three titles in a row.

The destination of the Earl Cup has been confirmed this week, leaders and still unbeaten Houghton Dairy Lane’s 6-1 win over Barnes Park virtually sealed it however it was confirmed when holders and nearest challengers Silksworth were beaten 5-2 at home by bottom of the table Seaham Town, the win for Seaham was only their second of the season but will not stop a return to the second division, Thompson Park will join them in the second division after a 6-1 defeat at Roker Marine. In the second division Hetton Workmen’s 6-1 win at Hylton Colliery sealed promotion while Barnes West End’s 6-1 win over Sunderland confirms their promotion, the destination of title is up for grabs as only two points cover the two teams, at the foot of the table Sunderland need results to go their way to avoid the drop while second placed South Hylton face a crunch game against third bottom North Biddick on Monday, if the latter collect all seven points they will stay up. In the third division Whitburn’s 6½-½ win over New Herrington sealed promotion while Roker Park need to avoid a 7-0 defeat at third placed Washington Glebe to take the other spot. In the Swan Cup top of the table clash holders Houghton Dairy Lane took a massive step to retaining the title with a 6-1 win at Silksworth, the holders are now three points ahead with a game in hand. The fight to avoid the drop is wide open as only three points cover the bottom four, Thompson Park’s 6-1 win over South Hylton gave them some breathing space but left the latter on half a point off the bottom, on Wednesday the bottom two Seaham and Houghton Town meet. In the third division Hetton Workmen’s and Usworth occupy the two promotion places with Roker Park chasing them. In the Harold Howey Barnes West End’s 4-0 win at long time leaders Thompson Park B has put them 5½ points clear with a game in hand of Houghton Dairy Lane B, that lead could increase this week as Dairy Lane have their bye, Dawdon and Washington A occupy the relegation places. In the second division the top two had a week off which allowed North Biddick B to keep their promotion hopes alive with a 3-1 home win over Pennywell. With the Storey Bowl title already in the bag Hetton Workmen’s celebrated their third consecutive title with a 6-1 home win over Hylton Colliery Welfare.

This season’s Burkett Shield has reached its final and it will be an all Seaham Town affair as Brian Henderson takes on David Wright. In the Quarter finals at Roker Park Henderson defeated Hetton’s John Wilkinson 21-16 while Wright defeated Dairy Lane’s Jeff Wilson by the same score. In the semi-finals at Washington Glebe the all Seaham final was confirmed as Henderson defeated Grindon’s Alan Patterson 22-9 and Wright beat Hetton’s Chris Fish 16-12. The Quarter finals of the Silver Jacks will be held on Tuesday at Roker Park.

Champion of Champions Draw – JS.Richardson (RM) v V.Hendry (RY), A.Hall (RP) v A.Hill (BP), B.Poulter (US) v M.Thomson (WG), F.Froud (BWE) v P.Wallace (HT), A.Patterson (GM) v W.Holmes (DA), B.Henderson jnr (ST) v D.Gowland (TP), R.Craggs (WH) v C.Fish (HW), J.Deverson (SU) v D.Bolt  (SI)
Seniors Draw – R.Jobling (BWE) and A.Cullen (HW) both have byes, R.Craggs (WH) v JA.Smith (RM), W.Barkes (RY) v T.Joicey (WG), D.Gibson (SU) v R.Moorhead (DA), W.Piggott (NB) v M.Baker (ST), M.Wright (BP) v A.Wilkinson (HT), T.Jopling (SI) v D.Hulley (TP)

The 59th Sunderland & District Tour went to Solihull under the stewardship of current President Vince Classen (Houghton Dairy Lane), the six match programme over the seven days saw the tourist’s record three wins and three defeats on another successful tour.           

The ladies three bowl triples sponsored by Jeff Wilson Ashbrooke Funeral Directors took place at Barnes Park this week with the honours going to Whitburn’s Kathy Hulley, Florence Rodenby and Anne Raine. In a tightly contested final the Whitburn trio defeated Ryhope’s Margaret Mitchinson 12-7.
Quarter Final Results – M.Felce (WH) 13 M.Pullan (SU) 7, M.Mitchinson (RY) 13 B.Robson (HT) 4, P.Robson (SU) 11 B.Parkins (SU) 9, S.Kempster (RP) 5 A.Raine (WH) 15
Semi Final Results – A.Raine (WH) 20-2 P.Robson (SU), M.Mitchinson (RY) 11 M.Flece (WH) 3

The National Championships at Leamington Spa started last weekend as the ladies events take centre stage, sadly for the Durham qualifiers it has been a disappointing week. In the fours however Houghton Dairy Lane’s Joan Rodgerson steered her quartet to a couple of wins, a first round 22-12 win over Isle of Wight’s Joyce Utteridge was followed by an impressive 29-12 win over Cumbria’s Beatrice Ross, sadly Surrey’s Pauline Clark ended Rodgerson’s hopes with a 24-10 defeat. Sunderland’s Sue Almond’s hopes were ended in the first round with a 26-16 loss to Hunts Catherine Popple. Both Durham hopes in the Junior Singles made first round exits, Stacey Pattsion 21-7 and Samantha Pattison 21-1 while Gill Jones did progress one round in the senior pairs before going down 19-15 to Lincolnshire’s Lynn Mountain.

6th August 2016 - SUPER SILKSWORTH

The Bowls Durham County finals day at Stockton proved to be a very successful one for Silksworth as they lifted three county titles. In the singles final David Bolt was never in danger of not recording a third success, Bolt’s opponent Dipton’s Michael English was left shell shocked and trailed 20-1 after only ten ends and twenty five minutes of play. Despite dropping back to back three’s it was inevitable that Bolt would get the winning single to seal a 21-7 win. The second Silksworth title came in the Two Bowl singles as Jaxon McKenna produced a polished performance to defeat Hartlepool Old Boy’s Carl Higgins 16-9 with three ends to spare. McKenna’s hopes of a county double were dashed however as in the final of the Junior Singles on a difficult rink defending champion Darlington RA’s Barry Hopkins inflicted a 21-14 defeat, this was Hopkin’s third Junior success in his final year in the event. The third Silksworth title came in the Fours as Gary Farquhar steered Shaun McIntosh, Stevie Cairns and Billy Ferry to a cracking 21-7 win over Stockton’s Paul Mosley. The Silksworth quartet were always in control leading 9-2 and then 15-5 at the half way mark, after the 16th end Mosley acknowledged it wasn’t his day and shook hands. In the Triples final Houghton Dairy Lane’s Colin Brown, David Armstrong and Dan Todner were always playing catch up against Hartlepool Park’s Dale Oram, 8-3, 12-5 and 14-7 down before shaking hands at 16-8 with one end un-played. The Pairs final saw Dipton’s Michael English comeback from 17-10 down with six ends to play to beat Stockton’s Paul Mosley 20-17, there was some consolation for Mosely twenty hours earlier when he beat Lyndhurst’s Peter Hudspith 21-13 in the Champion of Champions final.

The National Championships commence today at Royal Leamington Spa, over the next four weeks all the national titles will be decided. The team finals take place today as the Middleton Cup and Johns Trophy come to a conclusion. There is plenty of local interest in the Ladies Fours on Tuesday as Houghton Dairy Lane’s Joan Rodgerson will be hoping to steer her rink to national glory, in the first round Rodgerson faces Isle of Wight’s Joyce Utteridge. Sunderland’s Sue Almond will also be looking for a decent run in the fours and will face Huntingdonshire’s former England international Catherine Popple.

There was good news in the senior pairs as the Dairy Lane pair of James McKinney and John Thurlbeck secured a place at the national championships after defeating Darlington RA’s John Lynch 26-14, the Dairy Lane pair face Acle St Edmunds John Colcombe at Leamington on August 19.

Houghton Dairy Lane are on the verge of their first Earl Cup title for six years, following the win at Seaham Town the leaders need to win their last two games to take the title, at the foot of the table Seaham Town’s fate was confirmed after a 6-1 loss at second bottom Thompson Park who themselves look destined to join them in the second division. Hetton Workmen’s took another step to promotion after a 6-1 win over second placed Barnes West End while Sunderland and South Hylton occupy the relegation places. In the third division there were three 6-1 away wins for Roker Park, Ryhope and Washington. In the Swan Cup the top two both won, leaders Houghton Dairy Lane 5½- 1½ at Marine and Silksworth 7-0 at home to Thompson Park, the top two meet this week in what could be a title decider. The battle to avoid the drop is wide open with only a single point covering North Biddick, Houghton Town, South Hylton and Seaham Town. The third division leaders Hetton Workmen were beaten 5-2 at second placed Usworth while Grindon Mill broke their duck with a cracking 6-1 win over Hylton Colliery Welfare. In the Harold Howey the top two meet this week as leaders Barnes West End head to Thompson Park B, the second division long time leaders Washington B suffered another defeat this time 4-0 at home to Sunderland B and don’t have a game for two weeks before a top of the table clash against Hylton Colliery Welfare A. The Storey Bowl title is heading to Hetton Workmen’s for a third consecutive season, a 63 shot (7-0) win at Wearmouth cemented a seventh Storey title, the last team to win four on the bounce were North Biddick in the 70’s.

The Burkett Shield will be played to a finish this week as Roker Park will host the quarter finals on Tuesday. There will be livescore updates via the link on the home page...

Latest Burkett Shield Results - F.Froud (BWE) 20 A.Patterson (GM) 23, W.Ferry (Si) 20 J.Wilkinson (Hetton Wkmn) 21, P.Baker (Si) 20 D.Wright (ST) 21, P.Harding (HW) 15 B.Henderson (ST) 17, R.Sanderson (BWE) 14 C.Fish (HW) 24
Quarter Final Draw – J.Wilkinson (HW) v B.Henderson (ST), AJ.Dunn (HDL) v C.Fich (HW), A.Patterson (GM) v J.Huntingdon (RP) or R.Campbell (SU), K.Richardson (BP) or J.Wilson (HDL) v D.Wright (ST)

Latest Silver Jack Results
D.Hulley (TP) 24 J.Dinsdale (ST) 13, F.Knubley (RM) 20 B,Henderson (ST) 11, R.Mckie (RM) 15 A.Middleton (RM) 20, W.Ferry (Si) 21 D.Raine (TP) 10

There will be changes to the Bowls Durham competition area’s next season, the current six area’s will be condensed into four with the aim to create a more balanced draw. Locally Houghton Dairy Lane, Houghton Town, Hylton Colliery, New Herrington, North Biddick, Ryhope, Usworth and Washington Glebe move into area two to join the majority of Sunderland club’s while Hetton Workmen, Seaham Town, Hetton Park and Dawdon move into area four alongside Stockton and Hartlepool.

There was more local success in an Open Pairs competition as the Seaham Town Henderson father and son combination took the Vane Tempest Open Pairs last weekend. 































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