SEMI-FINAL: - played at 9.30 a.m.

Northamptonshire beat Gloucestershire 43-37 shots.

An excellent performance by both rinks, for although Connor’s rink lost they were up against an outfit, skipped by Nathan Kitchen, which was really ‘on its game’ and but for some superb deliveries by the back end of the County rink, especially Connor at skip, the match might not have gone their way. The last few ends for the County rinks were very good for, at the 16 ends played stage, they were losing overall by 2 shots. The last 5 ends for each rink were very productive as the County collected 14 shots to 6 conceded to turn the match around in their favour.

Details as follows, Gloucester skips only:

Rink 1. Adam Pitfield, Kieran Rollings, Will Walker & David Walker beat Ben Coldrick 24-12 shots

After 7 ends of play the County rink was 2-8 shots down, but over the next few ends David and his men gradually eroded Gloucester’s lead and after 13 ends of play were just 1 shot adrift at 9-10. At this point David and his men really bowled well, and they won the next 6 ends and added 12 shots to their score for a 21-10 shots lead. This was not achieved lightly, for it required on several occasions an excellent bowl or bowls from the County. For example on the 18th end Gloucester held 3 shots, but David drew perfectly to the jack to take shot, and on the 20th end Adam and Kieran had drawn very close to the jack, but the Gloucester No. 3 fired and spread the bowls about and the jack into the ditch to sit several shots, and it required a very good bowl from David to draw close to the ditch for shot. Unfortunately the Gloucester skip took that bowl out and held 2 shots. The last end was very good for the County as in collecting 3 shots the overall advantage was 8 shots with 2 ends left to score on the 2nd rink.

Rink 2. Danny Walker, Sam Gamble, Nathan Betts & Connor Cinato lost to Nathan Kitchen 19-25 shots

Connor and his men started off very well indeed for they posted 9 shots in the first 3 ends of play, including a big count of 5 on the 2nd end, and after 8 ends they held a very good 13-4 shots lead. At this point the Gloucester rink started to play some brilliant bowls, and it is said that the number 13 is unlucky, and for the County rink this was certainly the case for they were stuck on that 13 for 8 ends, whilst Gloucester reached 21 shots. The 17th end saw one of Connor’s best bowls for he was several shots down and he calmly drew the shot to ‘stop the rot’ and get off that 13!
On the very next end when 2 shots down Connor drew to the jack and picked up 2 shots himself as the skip ‘fired’ and missed, but at this point with the County having overall a lead of 8 shots, and this rink having 2 ends to score, the County supporters were a little worried, for although Connor drew into the head, which had been set up well by his players, the Gloucester skip sent a weighted bowl and the jack was sprung out for him to collect 4 shots, and a bit of encouragement for his team now needing 4 shots on the last end. This did not happen for him and after Danny and Sam had bowled some really good bowls for shots, Nathan and Connor bowled some bowls to strategic positions, but the Gloucester skip missed and with those 2 shots the County were in the Final by 6 shots overall.

FINAL: - played at 2.30 p.m.


What a performance by the County Rinks this was. One can safely say that they were all ‘up for it’ and the camaraderie on the green between both rinks and with each other, was tremendous and a joy to watch. The scoring was fairly even over the first few ends with the County just behind 4-6 after 3 ends, but the next 2 ends were very good for Kent as they took a 14-6 shots lead after 5 ends played by both rinks. After 10 ends of play Kent were still in front at 21-17 shots, but even though the County was in deficit, all bowlers were bowling very well indeed, and on the 13th end of the scheduled 21, both rinks collected a count of 4 to take the overall lead 27-25. From that point on Kent were not in the match with all the County men playing their best bowls, and over those last ends Kent were allowed just 3 more shots whilst the County collected 21 shots for a fantastic victory.

Details as follows, Kent skips only named:

Rink 1. Danny Walker, Sam Gamble, Nathan Betts & Connor Cinato beat Andrew Rodger 27-11 shots

Kent started this match the better and after 5 ends of play had a 6-3 lead, and although Connor & his men took a 2 shots lead over the next 2 ends, one end later the scores were level at 8 each. After 12 ends the County had just a 1 shot advantage, but the 13th end gave them a good count of 4, followed by 2 singles, for a 17-10 lead with 6 ends to play. After dropping a single on the 16th end Connor and his men firstly picked up a single and then on the 18th end when he was several shots down, Connor ran at the head, and then drew a shot for a very good pick up of 4 shots. The 19th end was a ‘master class’ of bowling by the County men, firstly Danny drew very close to the jack followed by Sam doing the same, and Nathan bowled his bowls close too. Connor delivered his bowls to strategic positions as he anticipated that the Kent skip would ‘fire’ and he was right, but the skip missed and the match was over for Kent with the County rink picking up a count of 5, with 2 ends left..

Rink 2. Adam Pitfield, Kieran Rollings, Will Walker & David Walker beat Dex Weyand 21-17 shots

The County men had a bit of a rough match for the first 12 ends, with Kent taking a lead early on at 6-3 after 4 ends and keeping a decent lead of 15-8 after those 12 ends, but in picking up a 4 on the 13th end, the County rink came good, and after 17 ends of play had drawn level at 16 shots each, with potentially 4 ends left to play. David and his men took the lead on the next end with a 2, and when playing the 19th end and holding several shots, the Kent skip fired and killed the end, and on the replay when the County was holding what would have been a Championship lie, the Kent skip got shot from a bit of a lucky ‘wick’. The 20th end saw Adam and Kieran both put bowls very close and Will likewise, forcing the Kent skip to try to ‘kill the end’ if he was to proceed to a win, but he missed and the Championship was the County’s.

Well done the County men, and not forgetting the Team Manager, Jason Bryan who selected the team, and encouraged them throughout.

A SELECTION OF PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE SUCCESSFUL DAY FOLLOWS (Taken b y John G. Church, MBE - BN Press Officer in whose copyright they remain):

26. Team has trophy
3, Team Pre S-F

Winning Team with IPP Laurie Harrison & Team Manager Jason Bryan

Team with Manager prior to Competition

11. Sam G
14. Nathan B
5. Connor C

Sam Gamble in action

Nathan Betts in action

Connor Cinato in action

12. Kieran R
10. Danny W & Sam G
9. David W

David Walker in action

Danny Walker in action.

Kieran Rollings in action

29. Team has trophy

Winning Team with Trophy

Back row: Kieran Rollings, Connor Cinato, Adam Pitfield & Nathan Betts
Front row: David Walker, Danny Walker, Sam Gamble & Will Walker

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