What a week for Belper Pottery, who shrugged off an indifferent start to the bowls season by posting two notable victories.
Pottery lifted themselves off the bottom of the Second Division table in the South Derbyshire Men’s League with a 9-3 home win over Swadlincote Catholics A. And then they stunned Premiership side Winshill in the Third Round of the prestigious Dickie Cup at Chellaston.
Winshill were warm favourites to progress to the quarter-finals, but James Bennett recorded an outstanding 21-7 win to set up a giantkilling that was backed up by Simon Beetlestone (21-12), Eddie Marshall (21-12) and Billy Marshall (21-15) in the 206-183 aggregate triumph. The draw for the last eight is due to be made this week.
In the match against Swadlincote, Ken Fox led the way for Pottery with a 21-6 success. There were also victories for Granville Curzon, Cliff James, Brian Leeson, Michael Patton, James Bennett and Billy Marshall as the home side greeted a welcome win after eight defeats in their previous 11 league games.
Meanwhile, Chellaston was also the venue for a fine victory by Belper Meadows in the league’s Third Division. The hosts have been a bogey team for Meadows in recent seasons, but not on this occasion as their bowlers rose to the task admirably in a 10-4 success (194 shots to 159) that moved them up to second place in the table.
Phil Weightman and Alan Ward both registered excellent 21-7 wins, while Mick Frost, Neil Ratcliffe, Graham Sheldon and Mick Nelson got the better of their ooponents too.
Earlier in the week, Meadows had entertained promotion rivals Rykneld and looked to be on their way to another success when all of their first four pairings celebrated victories. However, continuous rain led to the green becoming waterlogged and forced the match to be suspended. It was due to resume for the final six pairings on Monday night.
Elsewhere in the Third Division, unbeaten, runaway leaders Belvedere A were the visitors to Hazelwood and came away with an 11-3 victory that owed much to the form of Steve Lightfoot, Richard de Saeger and Terry Palmer.
Belvedere repeated the 11-3 margin of success on a trip to Horsley A to tighten their stranglehold on the title race after a run of 13 consecutive victories, which has given them a huge lead of 42 points at the top from Meadows.