In a very tense final, Benvarden once again won the E & B Taylor Charity Cup, beating St. Mary’s by eight shots.
Up to the eighth end in the second half the game sea-sawed from team to team but Benvarden won crucial ends near the close of play to secure a win.
Prior to the commencement of play Mrs. Maureen Moody, tournament organiser handed over a cheque for £2,100.00 to Mrs. Dorothy Black, vice chair-person for the Local Hospice Group. On accepting the cheque, Dorothy thanked Maureen Moody and indeed all the teams who had participated in the competition to help raise this huge amount of money. Mrs. Black went on to say that over the past 13 years the E. & B.
Taylor tournament, run by Mrs. Moody has amassed over £26,000, money, which is used locally to help those, and their families who suffer from cancer.
On mat one Ian Kerr (Benvarden) was up against David Gaile (St. Mary’s). Both rinks found the fast mats hard to master and it was a matter of trying to keep bowls alive rather than getting them close to the jack. After three ends the score was three shots each. Ian Kerr then went into a 10 shots to six lead, but St. Mary’s fought back to go down by just two shots, with a score of Benvarden 11, St. Mary’s 9.
Over on mat two it was Jordan Mullan (St. Mary’s) doing battle with Uel McKeeman (Benvarden). Again the teams were finding it hard to get the line and speed of the mat. Jordan Mullan won the first three ends picking up three shots. On the fourth end McKeeman got his act together to pick up four shots. Benvarden won the next three ends but St. Mary’s stuck to their task and after ten ends they had fought back to go down 11 shots to nine. This left the score at half time, Benvarden 22, St. Mary’s 18.
In the second half both teams got to terms with the tricky mats much better and some excellent bowling was witnessed by the big crowd of spectators. On mat one Declan McCann (St. Mary’s) played Rodney Kane (Benvarden). McCann won the first four ends to take a four shot lead. Kane then won the next three ends to go one shot ahead. With great drawing shots Declan picked up four shots in the eighth end to take the lead again.
However, Kane won the last two ends to win 10 shots to eight. A. Carson playing number two for Benvarden was the one to catch the eye in this match.
On mat two it was Barry Kane (Benvarden) up against Brian McAlary (St. Mary’s). McAlary won four of the first five ends to take a five shot lead. Overall this took St. Mary’s into a five shot lead, could they hold on to win the cup?
On the sixth end however Kane’s four struck back, lifting four shots to trail by just one. Kane went on to pick up five shots in the last two ends and with his brother also winning on mat one the trophy was on its way to Benvarden with a score of 42 shots for, 34 shots against.
Although on the losing team, Matt Smyth (St. Mary’s) was the star player on the night, peppering the jack with bowl after bowl.
Before asking Mrs. Moody to present the trophies, Jim McIlroy congratulated both teams on the quality of play on the night. He thanked Bryan Shaw for acting as umpire and he also paid a big thanks to First Coleraine for hosting the final and for providing the lovely supper.
Alastair McIntyre, on receiving the Cup on behalf of Benvarden, thanked St. Mary’s for the sporting manner in which the match was played and he was sure that they would be back in the final soon. He also thanked Mrs. Moody and the members of 1st. Coleraine for their hospitality.
NORTH WEST CHAMPIONSHIPS
All the disciplines have now been played in the North West Indoor Bowling League Championships and the format for Thursday night’s finals in First Garvagh Presbyterian Church is:
Rinks - A. Irwin (Loughanreagh) v W. Calvin (Ballinrees); Triples - I. Ross (Loughanreagh) v M. Jones (Finvoy Pres.); Ladies Pairs - E. McAuley (Finvoy Pres.) v H. Arbuthnot (Ballinrees); Open Pairs - L. McIntyre (Ballinrees) v N. Gamble (Loughanreagh); Singles - I. Ross (Loughanreagh) v T. Workman (Moneydig).
Play starts at 7.15 pm and finalists should wear either whites and greys or Club colours.
The final of the Morrison Trophy takes place this Wednesday night in Second Kilrea at 7.15pm.
The two teams in the final are Dunluce Parish and St. Colman’s Dervock. Dress code - whites and greys.