With reigning champions Rita Callan, David Quirk and Trevor Quayle not defending their title new names were destined for the trophy.
Bowls can at times be a game of chance and good luck which can sometimes outweigh even the most skilful or experienced of players. Lady Luck certainly was on the side of Muriel Cain, Janice Pilling and Win Kewley as despite some stiff opposition victory was theirs all the way. They started the competition under the captaincy of Marcia Pearson who unfortunately had to pull out at the semi-final stage, handing over the reins to Janice Pilling and the team drafting in Win Kewley. Their semi-final game against Eddie Carlyle, Nathan Hamilton and Mike Ashmole was a see-saw match with both teams taking turns in leading on the scoreboard. On the final end of their match the girls were lying 2 shots after some excellent long and accurate drawing bowls from Pilling when Carlyle played a spectacular firing shot to send the jack off the green and be re-spotted only to find his efforts were in vain as the nearest wood then belonged to the girls giving them the match and taking them into their first final together.
In the other semi-final husband and wife pairing of Stuart and Paula Garrett were joined by their league team mate Jimmy Sansom and they were up against the new team of David Quirk, Ray Osborne and newcomer Peter Greenlees. This was match of the championship as each and every end was so very close and could have gone either way. The experience and superb match play by the Garrett Sansom combination took them through to the final. Praise must go to Peter Greenlees who until last September had never bowled before and to David and Ray for bringing Peter up to such a standard so quickly.
In the final Muriel, Janice and Win won the toss and despite a somewhat shaky first end with all players not finding jack length the girls won the opening end with 2 shots. On the third end Stuart Garrett played an excellent weighted shot to move the jack and open his team’s account with one shot. Immediately the girls struck back with Pilling drawing in for another 2 shots. End 5 all players were again struggling with jack length but saw the girls winning the end and extending their lead to 8-1.
Paula, Stuart and Jimmy upped their game over the next 3 ends to close the gap to just one point behind Muriel, Janice and Win. On end 9 the team work between Cain and Pilling paid dividend with both scoring 2 shots each and extending their team’s lead by another 4 shots. End 10 saw the skills of Singles Champion Muriel Cain as she played some excellent drawing bowls to score another 3 shots closely followed by two ends of single shots for the girls giving them a tremendous lead of 17 shots to 7.
The sizzling form of Paula, Stuart and Jimmy in the previous rounds had almost completely deserted them whilst the girls led by a very determined and animated Pilling had settled into the match reaping the rewards despite at times playing several somewhat erratic bowls.
A short burst of superb drawing skills on the penultimate and final ends of the match saw Paula, Stuart and Jimmy raise their game to dominate play and score 7 shots. However it was too late to alter the outcome and Muriel, Janice and Win ran out the victors 17 shots to 14 and taking their first National Triples title.
Congratulations go to Muriel Cain, Janice Pilling and Win Kewley and not forgetting their original captain Marcia Pearson.
Commiserations go to Paula, Stuart and Jimmy on a valiant effort.
Thanks also goes to all competitors throughout the various stages of the competition, to the IOMIBA officials for running the event, the spectators and helpers, Norman Kneen for his photography and coin tossing skills and the NSC for the use of the facility.
This now concluded the 2017-18 indoor season and we will be returning in September with a new programme of leagues, competitions and social round robins.
Anyone interested in trying indoor bowls or joining the leagues next season, should contact the secretary via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Finally, the IOMIBA wishes good luck to Muriel Cain and Martin Paterson as they represent the Island next month at the forthcoming World Indoor Bowls Council’s senior world indoor singles and mixed pairs championships to be held in Hartlepool, England.