Bowls returns to the greens
IT was a wintery start for inaugural Ballarat-Highlands Bowls Region Saturday Pennant.
Central Wendouree had to move their main match onto the club’s synthetic green to protect the game from any interruptions due to rain.
“Although the weather is bitterly cold nevertheless it is great to get back to bowling again after all the COVID lockdown,” said Central Wendouree’s Margaret Wilkins.
All clubs observed a minute silence on the greens prior to the commencement of play to honour the passing of members since last season as well as those who were lost from the COVID-19 pandemic.
In Division 1, Central Wendouree won their match by 14 shots and two rinks up, taking 14 points for the day over Beaufort.
Ian Long’s rink had a strong 28 shot victory helped set up by Jordon Kaufmann who led consistently, with Anthony Gutteridge’s side having a narrow one-shot victory over Beaufort’s Stefan Wereszczuk.
The visitor rinks of Keith Topp and Debbie Stanaway had respective eight and seven shot wins to keep in the contest until the final stages of play.
Also, in Division 1 City Oval had a strong home win over Victoria to top the table.
They are followed by Waubra and Ballarat East – who scored 101 shots to Webbcona’s 62. Troy Dean’s rink took out a 30-shot win to secure victory for the home side.
In Premiers, Linton travelled to Creswick where they won on all rinks taking the full 16 points to top the division ladder.
Linton’s Craig Grenfell said it was a tough match with his and Stuart William’s rinks only taking the lead in the final stages while Peter Wilson’s maintained a steady lead against Stephen Hepworth.
In other parts of Premiers Buninyong, Victoria and Sebastopol all had strong wins to start their season each scoring 15 points.
Mt Xavier travelled to BMS to record an important away victory by a narrow three shots, with Chris McDonald’s rink 12 over Phil Clamp a decisive factor.
The BMS rink of Michael Storey was the highest scoring of the day, with 18 shots up, but it wasn’t enough to offset the margins set up by the McDonald and Phillip McGrath rinks.
In Division 2 the weather had an impact with the matches set for Ballarat and Buninyong washed due to unplayable greens. In the other matches home teams from Bungaree, Invermay and Clunes all started their seasons with good victories.
It was celebrations for Linton in Division 3 after winning at home and they now head their leader ahead of Learmonth and Sebastopol, who also had good wins and each taking 16 points.
Division 4 saw Mt Xavier, Webconna and Daylesford all have a good day’s play at their home greens with each winning three rinks.
Lastly, in Division 5 Ballarat North took all 16 points in their home match against Ballarat, while the country sides of Smeaton and Beaufort, also playing at home recorded good wins.
– ANTHONY McCABE