MATCH REPORTS (PREM TEAM)
23rd SEPTEMBER - AWAY TO EAST SUSSEX (33-7 WIN)
Hampshire's Premier team travelled to Grovelands School, Hailsham in East Sussex on Sunday and continued their winning form.
After their far from spectacular win at home, the team travelled
with the intention of a better and stronger performance,
and thus it proved.
In the first session Callum Goodman (Southampton) had a see-saw match with never more than a couple of shots separating him and his opponent. One shot up going into the last end it was disappointing to drop a single and thereby draw the game 10-10, but it was a good start by the young Under 21 player. Steve Puttock was 9-2 down at 6 ends but clawed back to being 14-10 up after 13 ends. It was therefore disappointing to drop a two and a three on the final two ends to lose 14-15.
There was much better news in the pairs, however, as Team Manager Mike Wright (Crown) patnered by Jason McLean (Southampton) came back from dropping 4 shots on the 3rd end to be 2-5 down at 3 ends to win the next 11 ends to go 21-5 up. A single dropped on the final end was scant compensation for the East Sussex team (21-6). On the adjacent mat, Ryan Young & Paul Goodman (both Southampton) went 18-2 up after 10 ends and despite dropping 2 counts of 3 followed by a count of two on alternate ends thereafter, ran out comfortable winners 22-10. It had been an excellent first session and gave the away side a lot to be pleased about.
The players in the second session took to the mats with great expectation and the triple of Jan Sansom & Steve Buckett (Crown) and Matt Smith (Southampton) got started quickly, going and at 5 ends they were 6-2 up before dropping a three on the next end. However this kick-started their efforts into a high scoring run with three counts of three plus two doubles and saw them finish comfortable winners 19-7.
Dom Channell & Ben Cherry (both Southampton) and James Bucknall (Crown) had no such qualms. A four scored on end 7 took them 12-1 up and a 5 on end 11 took them to 21-2. They ran out 22-3 winners scoring on every end bar three. The rink of Wendy & Ian Ford and Martyn Dubb (all Portsdown) along with Colin Dickinson (P & D) had a rather closer affair but the 5 scored on the 3rd end put them always in the driving seat. Another 5 followed on end 7 to make them 12-4 up and to add insult to injury a further 5 on the final end made the score 17-9. Nadine Bailey & David White (Southampton) along with Billy Ray (North End) and Alastair McCrea (Portsdown) had probably the closest game in this session being behind all the way until the last end. Although they won one end less than their opponents they had a better finish to the game however, picking up 7 shots over the last four ends, and thereby winning 10-8. A clean sweep of points in this session set the match up for a storming afternoon.
The halfway score of 13 points to 3 (135 shots to 71) for the travellers was very pleasing indeed.
Callum Goodman hardly got started in his second match and by the 9th end had not scored even a single shot. He rallied a little over the final few ends but still registered a convincing defeat 6-18. By contrast Steve Puttock was 12-4 up at 7 ends having scored 2 full houses, but then dropped a 3 and a single to let his opponent back into the game a little. However from there Puttock exerted some more pressure and moved into a fine win of 18-10 collecting a count of three on the last end. Unfortunately the games had been tough and the bonus points for the discipline stayed with the home side by a slender 5 shots.
Wright & McLean seldom looked in any real trouble and scored consistently although at 6 ends the score was only 3-3 and any big push looked decidedly unlikely. However, the final score of 18-7 showed that the class of the Hampshire pairing had asserted itself. Young & Goodman won one more end than their opposition but picking up a four on the penultimate end followed by a single on the final end made the scoreline a little easier on the eye at 12-7. Bonus points for the Pairs were well and truly with Hampshire with a 43 shot supremacy.
The session had been another good one and a significant lead on the match had developed.
In the final session, Buckett’s trio swept into an impressive lead of 6-0, picking up a 5 on the first end. However, they then dropped a five on the 3rd end to bring the home team right back into the game. From there it became a bit of a trading war of single shots and by the commencement of end 12 there were only three shots in it. However two singles on the final two ends saw the Hampshire trio home safely 13-8. Bucknall’s triple stormed to a 13-0 lead at 6 ends and didn’t look likely to concede any big scores at all, which continued to the last end at which point they dropped a three. However, a win of 18-6 was hardly likely to upset the applecart. Triples bonus points firmly in the bag with a 48 shot difference. The fours continued in the same way with Dubb’s foursome scoring on all but 4 ends, coming back from being 5-6 down 7 ends to score 10 shots over the final four ends to win 15-6. McCrea’s rink hit the ground running and were already 7-0 after two ends and then 12-1 up after the sixth end. The home side pulled out a three and a single on the 7th & 8th ends, but this was easily countered by 8 shots over the final three ends for Hampshire which gave a final score of 20-5 and all the bonus points safely in the bag for this discipline as well.
The final score was a staggering 33 point to 7 win for Hampshire
(255 shots to 135)
16th September - HOME TO surrey (21-19 WIN)
It was the first game of the season, home to Surrey for Hampshire's Premier side, and much was expected of a strong looking team. However, although the home side managed a 21-19 win, it was far from being a comfortable one.
In the first session Callum Goodman (Southampton) was only 7-9 down at 10 ends having rallied from being 3-8 down, but let his opponent off the hook ultimately losing 8-15. On the adjacent mat, Ben Pay (Crown) seemed to be in charge of his game, leading 8-4 at 7 ends but then dropped a two and a three to allow his opponent back into it (9-9). From there it was disappointing for Ben to lose 12-17. In the pairs, Ryan Young & Paul Goodman (both Southampton) clawed their way back from being 1-8 down at 6 ends to draw level (8-8) at 11 ends but then lost 9-11. A narrow defeat, but still no points achieved. The only points in this session came from team manager Mike Wright (Crown), partnered by Jason McLean (Southampton) who stormed away at the start (9-0 at 5 ends) continuing in the same vein to a 17-7 win, only dropping shots on 5 ends.
It wasn’t looking good at this point and everyone hoped for better news in the second session.
Jan Sansom & Steve Buckett (both Crown) along with Matt Smith (Southampton) started well enough and were 4-2 up at 4 ends, but lost focus a little and were always playing catch up struggling to reduce opposition shots, but they kept the game tight and only lost by 2 shots (8-10). The other triple, Dom Channel and Ben Cherry (Southampton) and Paul England (Bellinger) start as more of the same losing the first 4 ends 0-5 before pulling themselves together with a 12-7 win. In the fours, Nadine Bailey & David White (both Southampton) Alastair McCrea (Portsdown) and Colin Dickinson (P & D) were on the front foot for much of the game being 8-2 up at four ends, but then carelessly dropped 8 shots (3 and 5) in two ends to allow their opponents to get back into it. At 8 ends, the home side were 8-12 down, but then achieved a 5 of their own on the 9th end to get back in front (13-12) followed by a single and a double to finally run out winners 16-12. The final game being played in this session resulted in a draw 13-13 for Wendy & Ian Ford along with Martyn Dubb (all Portsdown) and Billy Ray (North End). It was a tight game all the way through with scores of five being traded on consecutive ends to keep it interesting. At the end of the penultimate end, however, the team had dropped a two to be 10-13 down so it was a welcome clutch of three on the final end to bring about the draw.
At halfway the fortunes and scoreline looked slightly better with the home side being up in shots (95-92) but down in points (7-9)
The reverse singles and pairs were far better games in the third session, with Callum Goodman staging a comeback from 5-11 at 9 ends to run out a 14-12 winner, whilst Ben Pay, who always seem to have the game under control, going 13-3 up at halfway before winning 17-11. However, dropping a three on the final end may have been instrumental in losing the discipline bonus points, which the singles did by a meagre 4 shots. In the pairs whilst Wright & McLean lost more ends than they won, and went from 7-1 up at 5 ends to 7-8 at 10 ends, fortunately they ran out 13-11 winners picking up a 3 on the final end. Young & Goodman won by the same scoreline (13-11) having only managed to ease into the lead on the 10th end, by picking up a count of 4 to make the scoreline at that point 9-7. Bonus points for the pairs safely in the bag however, and a good disciplined effort after the first session.
The start of the final session saw the team ahead 152 shots to 137 and 17 points to 11 but concentration was needed.
Buckett’s triple had a tight match only being 3 ahead at best and it was a welcome 11-9 win for the team at the end of the encounter.
Unfortunately England’s triple fell to a defeat of 11-19, especially disappointing as they had been just ahead for the middle part of
the game (9-6). However dropping 13 shots in four of the five ends
at the end of the game had been their downfall. Another tight discipline scoreline with the bonus points being lost by just 3 shots. Dubb’s foursome never seemed to quite get to grips with
their opponents, and dropping a five on the second end hadn’t helped. However it was still quite a tight game until the final two
ends where the home side dropped two consecutive 3’s and lost
9-17. McCrea’s rink certainly had a tough time of it but kept it tight
all the way through, showing their class in the later stages to pick
up 7 shots in three of the remaining four ends, running out 11-8 winners. However, the fours lost the bonus points by a single shot.
The final score was a welcome, if unconvincing, win for Hampshire of 21 points to 19. (194 shots to 190)