BOWLS: Sue reaches national latter stages

The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: Sue Cooke Sue Cooke

SUE COOKE has become the first bowler from North Wilts this season to qualify for the latter stages of a national indoor championship event.

She has reached the last 16 of the National Champion of Champions competition due to be played at Warner Lakeside Coastal Village, Hayling Island, over the weekend of January 31-February 2.

Cooke will face in the last 16 either Area 23 winner Valerie Harvey (Angel, Tonbridge, Kent) or Area 24 champion Sharon Todd ( Folkstone, Kent) who have yet to meet in their inter-area final decider.

She booked her place at Hayling Island with a 21-17 victory over Area 29 winner Clare Stevens (Victoria, Street) in the inter-area final.

Earlier in the champion of champions competition, Cooke had beaten current England junior international and senior triallist Stefanie Branfield (Clevedon) 21-19 and then Nailsea’s Muriel Lewis.

The North Wilts ace then recorded a fine 21-16 success in the Area 30 Champion of Champions final over Clarrie Dunbar’s Kathy Walker to set-up the showdown with Stevens, which she won to seal her last 16 spot.

Cooke is also still actively involved in four other national championship events in area 30 - ladies pairs, triples, fours and over 50 two wood triples.

Together with partner Alex Jacobs she has reached the area semi-finals in the pairs with a 25-16 win over Fran Stockford (Thornbury) and has qualified for the triples semi-finals with Jacobs and Janet Hardie after a 26-18 success against Lyn Palmer (Clevedon).

This trio of Cooke, Hardie and Jacobs will be joined by Val Molton in the fours semi-finals against Kim Smith (Clarrie Dunbar) – match to be played by January 5.

Cooke is also still running along with Jacobs and Jean Collier in the o50 two wood triples.

They face Thornbury skipped by Cynthia Winter-Alsop in the semi-finals by December 22 with the winners moving forward to the final and a meeting with Bristol skipped by Sue Osborne.

North Wilts also have other ladies still involved in area 30 competitions.

Hardie and her partner are through to a semi-final clash with Stef Branfield (Clevedon) while Hardie is also running in two Over 60 events.

She thumped Teresa King (Clarrie Dunbar) 21-5 in the quarter-finals of the o60 singles and now faces Clarrie’s Kathy Walker in the semis.

Hardie together with Jane Taylor face fellow North Wilts players Irene Button and Jean Collier in the O60s pairs semi-finals on December 17.

North Wilts ladies side are still flying the flag in a national team competition.

After wins over Purnell 103-75 and Bristol 96-51 they have reached the last 32 in the Yetton Plate and are due to meet Isle of Wedmore (Sedgemoor, Somerset) on Saturday, January 11.

THE MEN’S competitions in Area 30 are not as advanced as the ladies section but they still have a North Wilts interest in some of them.

Still running are Steve Snook in the pairs quarter-finals and his son Wayne in the quarters of the men’s fours. While in the O60s Richard Jennings plays in the pairs last eight and Derek Clark fours semi-finals.

MORE SPORTS NEWS & PICTURES IN THURSDAY'S GAZETTE & HERALD

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