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BOWLS: Somerset stand in way of last eight for county men
ANOTHER big win took Wiltshire men a step closer to securing a quarter-final place in the inter-county championship.
They defeated Gloucestershire 134-109 last Saturday at Royal Wootton Bassett and collected 21 out of a possible 22 points.
Wiltshire’s third Middleton Cup win in a row, sees them sit top of the West Group Section B table and sets up a showdown meeting with Somerset this weekend.
The shootout at North Petherton on Saturday (2pm) will decide which county will progress from the group stages to the last eight.
Wiltshire were always in control against Gloucestershire and made a fine start to lead 42-16 after five ends and 77-42 at 10.
The visitors hit back slightly in the second half but Wiltshire still ran out comfortable 25 shot winners.
They took the honours on five of the six rinks and drew on the other as Russell Francis came from 12-16 down after 18 ends to snatch a draw on the last end, with a single having previously killed the 21st end.
“Like the previous two games we had some spirited performances to get the final result,” said team manager Dave Snell.
“Four rinks won in single figures and one rink drawing with Mike Jacksons’s rink achieving the best win of the day by 11 shots.
“It took Mel Biggs rink to pick up a five on the last end to win by one and Russell Francis’ rink to pick up four shots over the last three ends to gain a draw.
“So overall another great result, which gives us 62 points after the first three group matches.”
He added: “The team are very aware that we still have to beat Somerset this weekend to be certain of qualifying to the quarter final stage and are looking forward to the challenge.”
The Wiltshire selectors have named an unchanged side.
Rink 1: Barry Sictorness (Wootton Bassett), Gary Jackson (Westlecot), Paul Macdonald (Chippenham Town) & Graham Shadwell (Spencer Moulton) beat Robert Griffiths 16-15. Rink 2: Wayne Simmonds (Holt), Mike Richards (W’lecot), Dave Godwin (Chip T) & Russell Francis (S Moulton) drew with John Roach 16-16. Rink 3: Kevin Carter (Highworth), Keith Bailey (Holt), Ian Jefferies & Mike Jackson (both W’lecot) beat Lee Williamson 25-14. Rink 4: Paul Kistle, Jay Titcombe, Graham Hatherall & Mel Biggs (all W’lecot) beat Paul Bryant 24-23. Rink 5: Nick Revell (Alderbury), Chris Cheesley (WB), Wayne Snook (Holt) & Michael Snell (WB) beat Dave Howes 27-21. Rink 6: Kevin Embling, Tom Walkley, Gary Morphet & Neil Smith (all Wootton Bassett) beat Graham Phillips 26-20.
Score: Wiltshire beat Gloucestershire 134-109 and 21pts to 1.
WILTSHIRE Men’s senior and junior (U25) sides travel to Ashcombe Park, Weston-Super-Mare this Sunday to face Devon in South Western Counties League matches (1.30pm).
The senior men made a winning start to their 2012 SWCL campaign with a 123-96 (18pts-4) win over Dorset.
The U25 side are yet to play a league match.
Seniors - Rink 1: Ben Hatton, Ashley Plumb, Jim Ford & Steve Mitchell (all Amesbury). Rink 2: Denis Holborow (Swindon), Dale Hayward (Spencer Melksham), Shaun Hicks & Richard Young (both Highworth). Rink 3: Chris Easton, Steve Morton (both Avon), Dave Matthews (W’lecot) & Colin Easton (Avon). Rink 4: Kevin Carter, James Richman (both H’worth), Steve Gedge (S Melksham) & Mark Richman (H’worth). Rink 5: Bob George (North Wilts), Dean Thomas (Box), John Ellis (Ames) & Nick Grenfell (Box). Rink 6: Tony Keating, Gary Fippen (both S Moulton), Bill Collier (Ames) & Ian White (S Moulton).
Res: Colin Sheppard (Ames) and Dave Warren (H’worth).
U25s - Rink 1: Craig Hatherall (W’lecot), Josh Fail (Purton), Ashley Keirl (S Moulton) & Michael Richards (W’lecot). Rink 2: Michael Titcombe Jnr (W’lecot), Tom Skull, James Nobbs (both WB) & Gary Jackson (W’lecot). Rink 3: Alex Wickham (Chippenham T), Craig Morphet (Rodbourne Cheney), Josh Cottle & Tom Walkley (both WB).
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