The 104th Hastings Open Bowls Tournament came to a close in glorious weather on Saturday.
The finals of the ladies’ and men’s singles were enjoyed by a good sized gallery of spectators at White Rock Gardens.
Two finals, the Gibbons, Mannington & Phipps Open Triples and the Brickwall Hotel Ladies’ Pairs, were held last Friday to avoid the possibility of somebody playing in three finals on one day.
The Don Softley Men’s Pairs decider also took place on the Friday because Jake Till (Spartan BC) was playing in the national under-18 finals at Bowls England’s headquarters in Royal Leamington Spa on Saturday morning.
In the open triples, the defending champions from Hastings Bowling Club, Harold Startup (skip), John Sallows and Dave Ward, outshone the visiting trio of Mark James (Ixworth BC), John Herlihy (Blidworth BC) and David Baxter (Wanstead Central BC).
The final score of 16-11 does not reflect the quality of the visitors, all of whom thoroughly enjoyed their visit and intend to return next year while making a holiday of the week.
In the ladies’ pairs, a high scoring and very close match saw Maxine Clarkson and Lorraine Milburn (White Rock BC) defeat Carol Baxter and Ann Pryke (Northiam BC) 28-20.
Quality was very much in the forefront in the men’s pairs as Alex Martin and Colin Nutton (White Rock BC) narrowly defeated Till (Spartan BC), who may have had other things on his mind, and Jason Walters (Bexhill BC) 22-16. They made inroads late on following a hefty deficit.
The Kiley’s Karpets Ladies' Singles was first up on Saturday, with the defending champion Corinne Wheatley (Fairlight BC) taking on the very experienced Clarkson. A poor start put Wheatley on the back foot, but she fought back well, winning five of the last seven ends to lose 21-17. At least she got a different trophy to put in the cabinet.
The Croft Glass Men’s Singles final was a highly entertaining affair, as was an encounter in an earlier round when the winner of the Bexhill Open Men’s Singles beat the winner of the Eastbourne Open Men’s Singles.
Success went to Trevor Logan (White Rock BC), who beat Mike Parlour (Southey BC, Surrey). Logan drew away towards the end, but Parlour was well worth his place in the final.
The tournament committee's thanks again go to Hastings Borough Council, along with the tournament's sponsors, advertisers and raffle prize donors, and the myriad of helpers, including markers, who made the event a success.
The Charity Triples Open competition, in aid of Chestnut Tree House, will take place on Sunday September 25. Organisers are hoping to see applications flood in for what's always a really fun day at the end of the outdoor season.
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