Borders win first match in Hamilton Trophy series

The Hamilton Trophy series reached the third week with no success for the Borders so far. On Saturday, May 26 they faced East Lothian at Tranent knowing they faced a very difficult task having rarely beaten East Lothian before.

In the last couple of years however results had been good against them and therefore a good result was not impossible. The green proved to be quite quick and rather tricky with bowls played on the wrong line being severely punished.

It was the Borders team which settled quickly and with five ends completed they were 10 shots ahead with three rinks up and three rinks down. East Lothian came back to demolish the lead but the Borders pulled away again and after ten ends they still led by five shots.

The match continued in the same way but the Borders were mostly keeping ahead albeit with just a slender lead. Even at eighteen ends the difference was just six shots and the result might go either way, however, the Borders kept focused and in the end they gained a magnificent victory by 125 shots to 107.

Two rinks had good wins the first of these being Callum Donaldson (Gordon), David Miller Snr (Waverley), Stuart White (Kelso) and Ross Nichol (Lauder). This rink started very well and led by 10-2 after six ends. After losing two singles they went further ahead but the loss of five shots in two ends reduced their overall lead to just five shots. They immediately struck back with a count of four and later on another count of five helped them to win by 26 shots to 13.

The second rink finishing with exactly the same score was Kirk Ford (Hawick), Derick Pearce (St.Ronans), Stuart Bebbington (Tweedmouth) and Robert Kerr (Ayton). This rink did not start so well and were 6-3 down after five ends. A count of four on the sixth end put them ahead and they remained in front leading by four shots after 15 ends. On the next end they gained an excellent count of six and then another five shots in three ends enabled them to finish 13 shots ahead.

Skips and scores as follows:-

Alan Brady 20, William W Wood 22; Ross Nichol 26, Craig Valentine 13; Graeme Forsyth 18, Steven Morgan 19; Robert Kerr 26, Derek Oliver 13; David Miller Jnr 14, James Pringle 22; Neil McNally 21, Alex Marshall 18.

This win might not enable them to qualify for the quarter final stages, but it certainly restores some pride to the team ahead of a difficult meeting next week when they play West Lothian at Coldstream.