Bowls: Mid-Ulster Ladies knocked out of Inter Zone by North West

The Pairs representing Mid-Ulster are G Smith and M Wilson, while, W Lennox will be partnered by D Jordan who is missing from the picture
The Pairs representing Mid-Ulster are G Smith and M Wilson, while, W Lennox will be partnered by D Jordan who is missing from the picture

The Mid-Ulster ladies are out of this season’s Inter Zone competition following their 18 shot defeat against North West.

In reality there was no a massive difference between the two teams and it was a game in which Mid-Ulster did not always take the opportunities available and North West often got the breaks.

In fairness the visitors were more positive when needed and the ability to reach a head with more aggression is something the ladies need to develop.
On mat one K McKenna, M Lagan, M Cushnahan and A McEldowney looked to be in total control for most of the game and looked to be giving the home side a significant lead.

After 5 ends the were 10–2 up and coasting but only managed 2 shots over the next 5 while their opponents picked up to leave the score 12-10 for Mid-Ulster.

On Mat 2, E Wright, G Simms, S Park and M McIvor managed to keep the score tight for 6 ends where only 1 shot separated the rinks but they were outplayed from then on with North West picking up 7 shots to win 13–7.

On Mat 3, D Young, A McAteer, O Kyle and A Mawhinney could and should have been well up in this game. They did not score until the 6th end but had opportunities to be abead. They deserve credit for hanging in and indeed dominated the last 5 ends picking up 9 shots to win 9–8.

With just 3 shot sin it at the interval hopes were still high for a home win. On Mat 1 S Anderson, D McHugh, R Patterson and M Paul scored on just 2 ends but that does not tell the whole story.

The North West rink was fortunate on several ends when the breaks, some unbelievable, went their way. On the 9th end when the difference between the sides was 10 shots, the Mid Ulster rinks were lying 5. The North West skip ran at the head and the bowl trickled through for shot, so what might have been an overall deficit of 5 became 11.

On Mat 2 E Brown, T McKenna, H Greer and M Martin had a tough time against F McDermot’s rink despite leading after 4 ends but they did concede a 4 and a 5 in the last 4 ends to leave them 14–7 down.

Despite the defeat, there were many promising signs this season and the ladies are not far away from being able to compete with the strong zones and can look forward to next season with more optimism.

The men play western on Saturday in St Swithin’s Magherafelt at 2pm. The team is; Rink 1: S Quinn, D McStravock, S McGlinchey, A Spratt; Rink 2: C McHugh, T Johnston, G Merron, D McAllister; Rink 3: D Jordan, L McHugh, D Grimes, C Hogg; Rink 4: D McElroy, S Kyne, A Ward, G Smith; Rink 5: M Wilson, J McKay, T Turkington, J Shepherd; Rink 6: A Paul, C L, W Lennox , N Conway. Reserves: N Barnes, A Bradley, R Clarke, B Kyne, C McKnight, G Wilson.

The following will represent Mid-Ulster in the National Finals.

Rinks- D McElroy, A Ward, J Donnel, D Davidson; Triples- A Paul, C Hill, H Paul; Pairs- W Lennox, G Smith; Pairs- M Wilson, D Jordan; Singles- A Paul, D Jordan, D McAllister, T Jeffers; Ladies Singles- B Davidson; Ladies Pairs- E Brown, W Wright; Ladies Triples- E Brown, E Wright, P Barnes; Over 55s- J McKay, H Paul; Junior Singles- D Davidson; Junior Pairs- R Thom.

Irish Short Mast Tour- The Short Mat Tour Singles will be held in Cookstown Leisure Centre from 6-11th January. The competition is full with 256 entries. The tour would like to thank the Good Relation branch of Cookstown Council for their support.