Bowls: West Lothian draw first blood indoors
West Lothian launched their defence of the indoor bowls Premier League title with an 85-69 victory over great rivals East Lothian in the A Section opener at the Inveralmond stadium.
Winning performances from the rinks skipped by Calum Logan and Thomas Mann kept WL in the comfort zone, however the visitors did defeat the rinks of Neil Speirs and Mark Allison.
East Lothian proved stronger on the final phase and were competitive on three of the four rinks.
The rink result that shored up the West Lothian drive towards victory was delivered by Logan, with the Scotland Junior Cap skipping Jamie Gracie, Blair Mackie and George Sneddon to a 28-12 win over Billy Mellors.
The margin of the defeat suffered by Mellors and his front-three of Gary Darling, David Sked and Stuart Bebbington was heavier than might have been expected and forced the visitors onto the back foot from an early stage.
Logan captured seven of the first nine ends to skip his rink into a 16-2 lead, having scored with four counts of 3.
“It was a major lift to our team spirit to see Calum making steady progress towards a 20-4 lead after 12 ends and it was an anchor performance from his rink as margins were tight in the other three games,” said team captain Thomas Mann.
The phase scoring saw West Lothian build up a 29-21 lead over the first seven ends with Logan tipping the scales with a 10-2 contribution and the 23-year-old was again instrumental with an 11-3 input to a significant 32-20 domination of the second phase.
East Lothian were operating with a depleted side given the absence of international stars Alex Marshall and Derek Oliver, and stalwarts like Andy Jeffrey, Brian Wyllie and John Stevenson, but their fighting spirit remained intact to edge the final phase 28-24.
Mann provided the back-up support to Logan as the clash of team captains saw him skip Cameron Greer, Ian Drysdale and James Speirs to a 21-14 win over Graham Robertson.
Robertson skipped Kieron Simmants, Jamie Gordon and Dougie Berwick to a 17-11 victory.
EL’s Willie Wood carded a 5 at his second end but trailed 15-14 to Paul Lynas, Raymond Logan, Stuart Johnston and Mark Allison before skipping Les Middler, Steven Thomson and Mark Johnston to a 20-16 victory following a late run of 3, 1, 1 , 1.
East Lothian drew more blood with Scott Kennedy skipping Colin Cook, Ewan Fallen and Jamie Higgins from 15-8 down to a 23-20 win over Bryan Cooper, James Greenock, Des Hagart and Neil Speirs.
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Friday 24 May 2013
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