NBF retain bragging rights in annual match

The men of the Northants Bowling Federation continue to hold bragging rights over the women from the NWBF after Sunday’s Eagle Trophy match at Peterborough IBC.

They remain unbeaten since 2005 but that didn’t dilute the obvious enjoyment from a match initiated by Janet Duffy and Iain Eagle, who donated the original heavyweight trophy, as wisecracks and banter filled the air.

In terms of the overall result the men scored a runaway victory by 134-69 over six rinks of fours played strictly to Federation rules

However, Ladies President Joan Robinson with her hand-picked rink of quality indoor bowlers – Jenny Harvey, Margaret Bloxham and Shirley Suffling – earned the respect of her team-mates and the opposition with an 18-12 defeat of her opposite number county President Bob Warters, his deputy Tony Mace, county secretary Melvyn Beck and indoor Under 25 champion Stephen Harris.

Eagle Trophy: NBF 134 NWBF 69: ( NBF names first): L Sharp ,D Lord, D Want, S Law 21, C Warters, M Andrews, G Edwards, S Craig 17; M Ramsden, D Ford, P Dalliday, G Agger 26 K Browning, A Cooper, V Du’Kett, J Ford 10; S Roden, B Bassam, P Brown, P Edwards 32 Fiona Richardson, M Malton, Margaret Linnell, L Barr 5; S Harris, T Mace, M Beck, B Warters 12 J Harvey, M Bloxham, S Suffling, J Robinson 18; D Hudson, Fred Richardson, M Greaves, N Wright 20 J Want, L Harris, P Birch, C Ford 12; C Watson, M Squires, MIck Linnell, D Noble 23 D Flowers, C Hunter, J Padley, J Masters 8.

Comfortable Trophy win against North Cambs

Northants Bowling Federation players took a step nearer their goal of achieving a place in the final of the Derbyshire Inter-county Trophy with a 128-66 defeat of North Cambs at Peterborough IBC.

The 12 points they picked up from a possible 14 from this four-rink, two-bowl triples match, puts them at the head of the southern section table with 26 points, ahead of Lincs and Norfolk, who have games in hand, but still regretting that recent defeat at Lincoln, which could still return to haunt them.

Captain James Harford made several changes in a bid to maximise the opportunity of playing the weakest team in the group but hadn’t reckoned on the form of veteran Eric Clarke, Tony Read and the evergreen former Peterborough bowler Nigel Eagle who caused an upset against Stephen Harris, Jonathan Earl and Tony Scarr.

The Stamford-based trio never recovered from conceding eight shots in the first three ends and five on the 10th which put them 6-17 in arrears. they eventually lost by eight shots.

Elsewhere Joe Randall returned to the squad to skip John Holroyd and Nick Wilkie and after a shaky start in which they trailed 5-12 after 11 ends, two maximum six counts turned their match around and they ran out comfortable winners 36-18.

Harford, meanwhile joined Simon Law and Howard Shipp to run up a 44-9 scoreline, claiming 18 shots without reply in the last seven ends.

Brian Martin, Bob Warters and Tris Morton completed the rout against a North Cambs rink in which each of their players interchanged persistently, as the rules allow, in a bid to find a winning formula. However, despite picking up singles on four of the last five ends, they went down 31-14.

In their final game, Northants play Norfolk at Acle on March 6.

Results (Northants names only):

Derbyshire Trophy ( at Peterborough): Northants 128 (12 pts) North Cambs 66 (2). J Holroyd, N Wilkie, J Randall won 36-18; S Harris, J Earl, T Scarr lost 17-25; H Shipp, J Harford, S Law won 44-9; B Martin, B Warters, T Morton won 31-14.

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The annual match between a Northants Federation President’s team and NWBF President’s team takes place at Peterborough IBC on Sunday, January 31 at 2pm.

The men’s team is: M Beck, T Mace,M Welsford, B Warters; C Watson,M Linnell, D Noble, M Squires; M Ramsden, D Ford, P Dalliday, G Aggee; L Sharp, D Lord, D Want, S Law; S Roden, B Bassam, P Brown, P Edwards; D Hudson, F Richardson, M Greaves, N Wright.

NWBF: (not in rink order): J Robinson, L Barr, D Flowers,S Craig, J Harvey, F Richardson,J Masters,, M Linnell, J Padley, K Browning, Ca Hunter, J Ford,M Malton, A Cooper, C Warters, S Sufffling, P Birch, L Harris, C Ford,G Edwards, V Du’Kett, M Bloxham, M Andrews.

Northants Bowling Federation Race Night

The Northants Bowling Federation, in conjunction with Whittlesey Manor Bowls Club, are hosting a fund-raising RACE NIGHT at the Whittlesey Manor club on Friday, March 11 with the first race at 7.30pm.

Tickets cost £6.00 which includes a fish and chip supper available from NBF committee members.

Changes to Derbyshire Trophy v North Cambs

Following the Derbyshire Trophy defeat by Lincolnshire, Northants Federation indoor captain James Harford has re-shuffled his team for the visit of North Cambs to Peterborough IBC on Sunday (Jan 24).

The only winners at Lincoln – Brian Martin, Bob Warters and Tris Morton – have been retained for the four-rink two-bowl triples format and drafted in are Howard Shipp, Tony Scarr and Joe Randall, recovered from an appendicitis operation.

Northants need maximum points to take into their final match against Norfolk at Acle in March if they are to stand any chance of qualifying for the national final at Newark in April.

Northants team (10am start) H Shipp, J Harford, S Law; B Martin, B Warters, T Morton; S Harris, J Earl, T Scarr; J Holroyd, N Wilkie, J Randall.

Setback to Northants’ Trophy hopes

Northants Bowling Federation suffered a set back in its hopes of capturing the Derbyshire Trophy indoor inter-county championship to add to the outdoor Adams Trophy they won in the summer.

Facing Lincolnshire at the Lincoln and District stadium, they lost on three of the four two-bowl triples rinks to go down 106-74, conceding 12 of the 14 points available.

Northants still head the southern section table with a total of 14 points following their defeat of Hunts and will need to take maximum points against North Cambs in their next match at Peterborough on January 24 to keep their hopes of reaching the finals alive.

Lincolnshire mastered the surface much better on the day once they had taken a stranglehold of the faster conditions, to take a 60-42 lead after 15 of the 25 ends, though on many occasions heads were decided by fractions of an inch as both teams showed great drawing and conversion skills.

Outstanding for Northants was left-handed Tris Morton who showed time and again why he is much in demand as a skip with touch in his drawing shots and power and accuracy in his drives.

He was supported on his rink by Brian Martin and Bob Warters in a 30-18 win, the margin of which probably flattered them thanks to 10 shots achieved in the last three ends with the overall match already beyond Northants.

Elsewhere Simon Law’s rink never came to terms with their opponents after trailing 1-12 after seven ends, while Jon Earl’s trio held a slender lead until opposite number George Draper switched to No.2 -as the Federation rules allow – and proceeded to inspire a runaway 25-13 win.

Captain James Harford kept his trio in touch for long periods against the equally talented Jonathan West but 11 shots without reply on the last six ends put the match beyond them.

Results (Northants names only)

Derbyshire Trophy: Lincolnshire 106 (12 pts) Northants 73 (2). J Holroyd, N Wright, S Law lost 15-33; S Harris, P Dalliday, J Earl lost 13-25; H Shipp, N Wilkie, J Harford lost 15-30; B Martin, B Warters, T Morton won 30-18.

One change for Northants’ Derbyshire match at Lincoln

James Harford, captain of Northants Derbyshire Trophy team, has made only one change for the next fixture away to Lincolnshire at Lincoln on January 10, bringing in Bob Warters (Stamford) for clubmate Tony Scarr, who is on holiday.

In the first round of matches Northants beat Hunts at Peterborough.

Says Harford: “It’s a new year but the same objective. After a good start to the campaign we take on a Lincs side renowned for putting out a strong team for their home fixtures at Lincoln. We expect to have a tough game but as always the experience and quality within the Northants ranks are more than capable of getting a result which hopefully will leave us a step closer to reaching the final at Newark in April.

Northants team: Stephen Harris, Jonathan Earl, Simon Law; John Holroyd, Neil Wright, Roger Martin; Nick Wilkie, Bob Warters, James Harford; Brian Martin, Joe Randall, Tris Morton.

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Stamford Indoor Bowls Club are pulling out all the stops to attract a fresh intake of bowlers to join their burgeoning membership of over 500, when the club stages its third free Open morning of the season on Saturday, January 9 (from 9.30am).

Equipment is also provided free of charge as coaches and experienced players offer the opportunity for newcomers to try the sport.

The club is currently buzzing after a successful Christmas tournament, stretching its reach to bowlers in Peterborough, Yaxley, Oundle and Whittlesey and encourages current members to bring along a friend to try the sport. It is also keen to appeal to previously non-bowlers to call in and for those who just bowl outdoors in the summer to see what the indoor game has to offer.

Great start to Northants’ indoor season

In search of a unique double of national outdoor and indoor inter-county titles in the same year, Northants Bowling Federation has made a flying start.

The current holders of the prestigious English Bowling Federation Adams Trophy, won for the first time in their history at Skegness in August, the county beat local rivals Hunts Federation in the opening match of the Derbyshire Trophy indoor series at Peterborough IBC.

New captain James Harford (26) picked a team with a blend of youth and experience that proved just too strong for their neighbours, claiming 12 of the 14 points available in a 110-73 shot victory over four rinks of two-bowl triples.

Top scoring rink was the combination of Stamford bowlers John Holroyd and Roger Martin, with City's Neil Wright at No.2. Holroyd led with great accuracy with long jacks, supported well by Wright, with Martin mopping up the conversions and drawing the extras. The 34-15 scoreline was a fair reflections of their domination.

Equally Brian Martin, Joe Randall and Tris Morton, rarely offered opportunities to their opponents to cut the advantage they built early on and in the last 15 of the 25 ends tussle, conceded only six shots while adding 15 of their own in a  32-13 demolition.

Early on, Simon Law's rink with Stephen Harris (18) and Jonathan Earl, were held at bay until Law's Stamford colleagues started to adjust to the faster carpet and stretch their lead to finally win by six shots.

Harford, Nick Wilkie and Tony Scarr, making a welcome return to the Northants line up, came up against a strong Hunts rink led by the unerringly accurate Steve Farrant, supported by Lee Swannell and Richard Stevens. Northants were on the back foot for long spells with Hunts ahead 21-9 at 20 ends but when Harford and Scarr switched, as the Federation rules allow, they were able to cut the deficit to just seven shots at the close.

Northants' next match will be a tough examination at Lincoln IBC against Lincolnshire on January 10.

Result (Northants names only):

Derbyshire Trophy(at Peterborough): Northants 110 (12pts) Hunts 73 (2). S Harris, J Earl, S Law won 27-21; J Holroyd, N Wright, R Martin won 34-15; N Wilkie, T Scarr, J Harford lost 17-24; B Martin, J Randall, T Morton won 32-13.



Harford names his first Derbyshire Trophy squad

New Derbyshire captain James Harford has selected his first preferred Northants Federation team for the home match v Hunts at Peterborough IBC on December 6 (10am) – featuring four rinks playing two-bowl triples.

He is reluctant to reveal the line-up in rink order but the team includes two Stamford IBC players new to the squad from last season – Jonathan Earl (Blackstones) and the experienced Tony Scarr (Parkway) who has returned after a break from competing in this indoor inter-county championship.

Says Harford: ” We went very close to qualifying last time, beating all the main challengers but losing a key first match at Huntingdon. It was a very hard selection when we have a huge amount of players with the capability to play. But nevertheless these are the 12 players I have selected to do a job against Hunts.”

The players are: Brian Martin, Nick Wilkie, Stephen Harris, John Holroyd, Joe Randall, Neil Wright, Tony Scarr, Jonathan Earl, Tris Morton, James Harford, Roger Martin, Simon Law.

Watson makes way for Richardson as Adams captain

Having guided the Northants Bowling Federation county team to Adams Trophy glory for the first time in their 71-year history, it was not a total surprise when it was revealed at the annual meeting that team captain Cliff Watson had decided to stand down.
There’s certainly nothing like going out at the top, although in fairness he had said when originally elected that he would take the reins for three years during which time he hoped he would lead the team to the English Bowling Federation’s inter-county championship final for the first time since 1959.
That was achieved in the third year of his tenure and for good measure the team went one better by defeating Northumberland in the final at Skegness.e

The outgoing captain will now resume playing duties in the Newton Trophy under the captaincy of Peterborough & District clubmate Brian Bassam, who was re-elected to the post, while the new Adams Trophy captain, with perhaps the most difficult challenge in local bowls next season, is experienced county player Fred Richardson from Whittlesey Manor.

James Harford has taken over the captaincy of the Derbyshire Trophy, the indoor inter-county championship, following Howard Shipp’s decision not to stand for re-election.
There was a special honour for immediate past president Malcolm Squires who received a life membership in recognition of many years of dedicated service to the NBF which has included two terms as county president.
Having spent the first year of his two-year presidency without a deputy, Bob Warters will have Tony Mace at his side this coming year following the election of the Whittlesey Manor stalwart as deputy president.
One key change on the administrative side of the county was the appointment of Melvyn Beck as county secretary following the decision of Mike Ramsden to stand down. Both Ramsden and Watson were elected to fill the two vacancies on the management committee.
The county have been forced to withdraw their under 25 team from the Reg Wright Trophy because they are unable to recruit enough players to compensate for the loss of several key personnel who are now ineligible.
The president said it was a major disappointment that the county had to make this decision, but there was no real option at this stage, although he hoped the situation might improve in the near future to enable the county to return to the competition.
Market Deeping have affiliated for the first time, but following the resignations of Wittering and Werrington, the county is now down to just 17 clubs.
It was announced that the county indoor finals would be hosted by Peterborough & District on Sunday, March 13, while the outdoor finals will be staged at the recently-opened City of Peterborough green on Sunday, July 17, when it is also hoped to stage the final of the Dan Duffy Trophy.

If it’s not possible to include the Dan Duffy Trophy final that day, it will be held at the same venue on Thursday, July 28, with the Adams Cup decider the following Thursday (August 4), also at City of Peterborough.
Treasurer Les Sharp reported a loss on the year of £926.17, but an increase in competition entry fees from £2.00 to £2.50 and a reduction in travel costs next season should make up that shortfall.

Officers elected: Deputy president, Tony Mace; Secretary, Melvyn Beck; Treasurer, Les Sharp; Match secretary, Graham Agger; Competitions & results secretary, Barry Lawrence; Minutes’ secretary, Linda Toms; National delegate, Alan Croxford; Press officer, Melvyn Beck.

Team captains: Adams Trophy, Fred Richardson; Newton Trophy, Brian Bassam; Derbyshire Trophy, James Harford.

Management committee: Peter Brown, Alan Croxford, John Dickenson, Mick Greaves, Mick Linnell, Steve Roden, Martin Welsford, Neil Wright, Cliff Watson, Mike Ramsden.
Derbyshire Trophy fixtures: Sunday, December 6 v Hunts (Peterborough, 10.0am); Sunday, January 10 v Lincs (away); Sunday, January 24 v North Cambs (Peterborough, 10.00am); Sunday, March 6 v Norfolk (away).


Celebration in style at Northants luncheon

Northants Bowling Federation celebrated its outstanding season with its annual luncheon at the Haycock Hotel, Wansford for over 100 players, officials and guests.

The county claimed four national English Bowling Federation titles during the year. It also captured the Victor Ludorum Trophy for the first time in its history as the top points scorers in the national outdoor finals at Skegness.

However, while congratulating all those who had contributed to the success of the county on and off the green, including winning the inter-county Adams Trophy for the first time since its inception in 1927 and capturing one indoor and two outdoor trophies for individuals, Northants President Bob Warters, warned of complacency.

“We have shown what the county can achieve once momentum and confidence gets a hold. Now we have many more targets in our sights,” he said, “not least generating more enthusiasm for all our teams – mens and womens, indoors and outdoors – and bring more youngsters on board. It is up to all of us to encourage the next generation of bowlers.”

He added: “In years to come, wouldn’t it be great for them to look back through the records and say ‘ Wow! That year 2015, Northants could really play. And that was the year that inspired us to kick on.’

“So let’s not just sit back and think what a year that was. My message to everyone is: ‘This is only the beginning.'”

The county were also praised for their success by Beryl Beresford, national president of the English Women’s Bowling Federation and fellow guest speaker Melvyn Beck, President of the Peterborough Bowls League.

Singles: Jenny Harvey; r/u Julie Masters; Senior singles: Jenny Harvey; r/u Sheila Craig; Pairs: Jenny Harvey & Carol Hunter; r/u Shirley Suffling & Margaret Andrews; Triples: Pat Bussey, Liz Hext, Sheila Craig; r/u Sue Moir, Margaret Andrews, Glenys Edwards.

Singles: Simon Law; r/u Andrew Thurston; U25 singles: James Harford; r/u Joe Randall; Senior singles: Martyn Dolby; r/u John Burrows; Pairs: Nick Wilkie & Andrew Thurston; r/u Howard Shipp & Neil Wright; Mixed pairs: Ann Holmes & Richard Allam; r/u Joan Robinson & Nick Wilkie; Triples: Neil Wright, James Harford, Simon Law; r/u Howard Shipp, Joe Randall, Jeff Newson; Mixed triples: Mary Malton, Stephen Harris, Nick Wilkie; r/u Sarah Newson, Andrew Thurston, Jeff Newson.
National 2-bowl triples winners: Neil Wright, Simon Law, Tris Morton; Mixed triples finalists: Stephen Harris, Jan Want, Nick Wilkie.

2b singles: Sarah Newson (Parkway); r/u Sheila Craig (Conservative); 4b singles: Sue Moir (Langtoft Pearl); r/u Sarah Newson (Parkway); Champion of Champions: Ann White (Langtoft Pearl); r/u Linda Darani (City of Peterborough); Senior singles: Fiona Richardson (City of Peterborough); r/u Joan Robinson; Secretary singles: Liz Ritchie (Empingham); r/u Linda Darani (City of Peterborough); U25 singles: Louise Harris (Blackstones).

Pairs: Sarah & Val Newson (Parkway); r/u Liz Hext & Sheila Craig (Conservative); Senior pairs: Kath Browning & Vivian Hempsell (Yaxley); r/u Dee Brinkman & Joan Robinson (Yaxley); 2b triples: Helen Crow, Sarah Newson, Pat Reynolds (Parkway); r/u Pat Bussey, Liz Hext, Sheila Craig (Conservative); 3b triples: Helen Crow, Sarah Newson, Pat Reynolds (Parkway); r/u Pat Bussey, Liz Hext, Sheila Craig (Conservative).
National finalists: Two-bowl pairs: Sraha and Val Newson; 4-bowl singles: Sue Moir.

2b singles: Gavin Jinks (Whittlesey Manor); r/u Lee Welsford (Whittlesey Manor); 4b singles: Joe Martin (Peterborough & District); r/u Stephen Harris (Blackstones); Champion of Champions, Adam Warrington (Blackstones); r/u Graham Agger (Yaxley); Senior singles: Bob Warters (Ketton); r/u Peter Edwards (Ketton); Secretary singles: Melvyn Beck (Whittlesey Manor); r/u Andrew Grief (Crowland); U25 singles: Stephen Harris (Blackstones); r/u Jack Corney (Peterborough & District). Under 25 ‘Player of the Year’: Jack Corney.

U25 open pairs: Jack Corney (Peterborough & District) & James Harford (Parkway); r/u Darren Middleton & Stephen Harris (Blackstones); Pairs: Robert Heath & Tony Belson (Yaxley); r/u Jeff Clipston & Mick Greaves (Peterborough & District); Senior pairs: Roger Stevens & Tony Mace (Whittlesey Manor); r/u Noel Catterwell & Martin Fletcher (Langtoft Pearl); Mixed pairs: Chris Morton & Simon Law (Parkway); r/u Ann & Martin Cullingworth (Langtoft Pearl); Senior mixed pairs: Ann & Martin Cullingworth (Langtoft Pearl); r/u Jane Needham & Martyn Dolby (Blackstones).

2b triples: Stuart Reynolds, Joe Randall, James Harford (Parkway); r/u Peter Marchant, Tony Belson, Chris Wheeler (Yaxley); 3b triples: Adam Warrington, Martyn Dolby, Jonathan Earl (Blackstones); r/u: Graham Jackson, Michael Humphreys, Roger Martin (City of Peterborough); Mixed triples: Shirley Suffling (Ketton), Nick Wilkie, Paul Buckley (Blackstones); r/u Howard Shipp, Chris Morton, Simon Law (Parkway).
National winners: Senior singles: Bob Warters; Senior pairs: Roger Stephens, Tony Mace. Finalists: Pairs: Robert Heath, Tony Belson; 2-bowl triples: Stuart Reynolds, James Harford, Mike Robertson; 3-bowl triples: Adam Warrington, Martyn Dolby, Jonathan Earl.
Danny Duffy Trophy: Whittlesey Manor; r/u Parkway; Adams Cup: Whittlesey Manor; r/u West Ward A; Durham Centenary Trophy Area finalists: Parkway.

Images by Pip Warters:



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