Bowls: Hinder loses his county crown but Cam Mills quartet triumph

Fours winners Phil Beames, Russ Mellerup, Dave Smith and Allan Norris (Cam Mills) with Gloucestershire Bowls president Anthony Sharkey

Paul Bryant (Olveston ) in action against Paul Pulley (Tewkesbury)

First published in Gloucestershire Sport

THE blue ribbon event of bowls, the County Singles final held at Olveston Bowls Club, saw a cracking final lasting two hours that swayed both ways between last season’s winner Keith Hinder (Dursley) and last season’s runner-up Lee Williamson (Cheltenham).

Hinder, up at the start, took a three-shot lead before Williamson drew level and then edged ahead 13-12.

The defending champion then went back in front 15-14 before Williamson struck a decisive blow, scoring three shots.

The match went to the 26th end when Williamson bagged a double to avenge last year’s defeat and become champion, winning 21-17.

The Fours final produced the fightback of the day with Allan Norris, Dave Smith, Phil Beames and Russ Mellerup (Cam Mills), up against Nathan Kitchen, Nick Holliday, John Roach and Matt Cuthbert (Cheltenham).

Cam trailed the Cheltenham quartet 7-1 after just four ends.

The loss of a four and two threes put them 17-7 behind before they stopped the rot with a three.

Staring defeat in the face, losing 19-11, they mounted a match-winning challenge when scoring three threes to jump into a 20-19 lead with two ends to play.

The 20th end saw them grab a four to put them 24-19 ahead and although they dropped a two on the last end the title was theirs with a 24-21 victory.

The Pairs final was a local derby with Brian Burleigh and Keith Hinder (Dursley) up against John Heathcote and Dave Howes (Stroud).

The Stroud pair stormed into a seven-shot lead before dropping a five on the fifth end.

Dursley, having then taken the lead, then won four out of five ends to lead 12-9.

Stepping up a gear, Dursley took command, scoring two twos and then two fours to become champions, triumphing 24-11.

In the Champion of Champion Final Paul Bryant (Olveston) overcame Paul Pulley (Tewkesbury ).

When coming from 8-3 and 11-6 down, he turned up the heat with a four and three twos and a run of three winning ends to take the title 21-14.

The Junior Singles final went the way of Nathan Kitchen (Cheltenham), whose unstoppable performance overwhelmed Steven Crowcombe (Cam Mills) 21-3 to retain the title he won last year.

In the Triples final Vince Wilks, Matt Curtis and Doug Lewis (Gloucester City) held the upper hand against Steve White, Malcolm Cutis and Peter Stinchcombe (Tetbury) when they made a stunning start, scoring 14 shots without reply.

In that run of six winning ends they bagged three threes.

Another three and a two made it 20-1 and although they lost the next five ends they marched to the title, winning 24-9.

The Two Wood Final was won by David Heath (Caer Glow) who, up against Martin Shepherd (Northwick), had to come from behind early on to lead 12-7 and then go onto to become champion, winning 15-10.

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