KEVIN Baker agonisingly just missed out on joining the exclusive maximum club and then suffered the added disappointment of finishing on the losing side, writes ANDY BEAL.
Just 16 players have clanged off the magic 18 dolls in the league’s 76-year history.
Baker whipped off his first 16 dolls, but missed with the 17th stick before hitting the last to finish with a 17-doll haul in the Premier Section clash.
He helped Cricketers B take the first leg on three sticks after it finished 28-28.
But hosts Six Bells C Kidlington responded to claim the next two legs 30-23, with Ady Cross (5-4-5) and Roger Goodall (6-3-5) top-scoring with fourteen dolls apiece.
Three Pigeons dropped their first legs of the season as they went down 2-1 at Red Lion A Eynsham.
Pigeons went ahead 29-22, but the home side roared back 28-26, 29-22, with Keith Powell (5-5-3) top scoring.
Adrian Shepherd (4-5-5) hit form, but New Club A lost 2-1 at home to Yarnton British Legion.
The visitors won 26-28, 31-25, 21-20, as Jez Thompson (5-5-3) clanged off a baker’s dozen.
Despite 14 dolls from Chris Jenkins (6-4-4) it could not prevent Gladiators A crashing 2-1 at home to Rose Hill Club A, who clinched their their first win of the season.
It was all over after the first two legs ,25-23, 27-20, went in Rose Hill’s favour, before Gladiators grabbed a consolation by taking the final leg 22-18.
The Woodman inflicted the first Section 2 defeat for Ampleforth Arms A.
The visitors raced into a 2-0 lead 20-18, 24-20, before Ampleforth gained a point in the final leg, 24-21.
Jeff Glenister (5-5-4) was in top form for the Griffin as they beat Red Lion B Eynsham 2-1 at home 18-16, 21-22, 20-16.
Six Bells Quarry just preserved their unbeaten run after coming from behind to beat hosts Vikings Sports B.
Vikings took the opening leg 16-11 and the second leg was tied 16-16 before the Bells won it on three sticks.
They made sure of victory in the final leg 25-14.
Mark Warrell, from Six Bells A Kidlington had a mixed night in Section 3.
After failing to trouble the doll with his first 12 attempts, he clanged off all six in his final throw, to help them to a 2-1 win over visitors Tiddington Cricket Club.
The Crown Chalgrove whitewashed Vikings Sports A 3-0, but the game was much closer than the score line suggests.
Don Armstrong (3-4-4) top scored as they won 18-17, 18-16, 17-16.
Bullnose Morris slumped to their first defeat of the season as The Crown Otmoor took all three legs 18-16, 14-13, 25-16.
Only two dolls separated Chandos Arms and Brill Sports Club B in Section 6, but it was enough to give Brill all three points.
Brill took the opening leg 15-13 and relied on three stick shoot-outs after the next two legs finished 16-16, 13-13.
Catherine Wheel A scored one more doll than visitors Bullnose B, but still lost out 2-1 in Section 7.
The away side scrapped the opening leg 14-13.
Catherine Wheel levelled in the next leg 13-9, before Bullnose won the decider 13-12.
In a high-scoring game for the section, Rose Hill Club B beat visitors Prince of Wales 21-18, 18-14, 14-13.
Rose Hill’s Arthur Bowers and Prince of Wales’s Neil Butler both reached double figures (3-3-4).
Gladiators B march on in Section 8 with a 3-0 win at Red Lion Marston.
They won the opening leg 11-9, the second on three sticks after it was tied 10-10 and the final leg 12-9.
Chequers C crashed to their first loss of the season.
Hosts Florence Park B won the first two legs 16-10, 14-13, before Chequers won the final leg on three sticks after it was tied 12-12.
In Section 9, Golden Ball still have not tasted defeat after edging past Florence Park A 2-1.
They won the first leg 15-9, but had to rely on three sticks in the next leg after it was drawn 17-17.
Florence Park won the final leg 17-14.
GREENE KING OXFORD & DISTRICT LEAGUE
Premier/Section 1: Six Bells C Kidlington 2, Cricketers Arms B 1; Red Lion A Eynsham 2, Three Pigeons 1; New Club A 1, Yarnton British Legion 2; Gladiators A 1, Rose Hill Club A 2; Black Prince 1, Garsington Sports A 2.
Section 2: Vikings Sports B 1, Six Bells 2; Three Horseshoes A 0, Red Lion Kidlington 3; The Griffin 2, Red Lion B Eynsham 1; Chequers A , Team Monarch 2; Ampleforth Arms A 1, Woodman Inn 2.
Section 3: Six Bells A Kidlington 2, Tiddington Cricket 1; Masons Arms A 3, Kennington Club 0; Crown Chalgrove 3, Vikings Sports A 0; Chequers B 0, Ampleforth Arms C 3; Bullnose Morris A 0, Crown A Otmoor 3.
Section 4: Pheasant Inn A 3, New Club C 0; Original Swan A 2, Masons Arms B 1; Green Road Club 2, The George A 1; Donnington Club A 1, Queens Head 2; Cowley Workers 0, Vikings Sports C 3.
Section 5: Vikings Sports D 2, New Club B 1; Garsington Sports B 2, Donnington Club C 1; Cricketers Arms A 1, White Hart A 2; George B 1, Red Lion Islip 2; Brill Sports Club A 3, North Oxford Con A 0.
Section 6: Chandos Arms 0, Brill Sports Club B 3; Red Lion Yarnton 1, Red Lion C Eynsham 2, Ampleforth Arms B 3, Seacourt Bridge 0.
Section 7: Rose Hill Club B 3, Prince Of Wales 0; Kings Arms B 0, Northway Club B 3; Headington BL 2, The Blackbird 1; Donnington Club B 2, Six Bells B 1; Catherine Wheel A 1, Bullnose Morris B 2.
Section 8: Red Lion Old Marston 0, Gladiators B 3; Northway Club A 1, Littlemore BL 2; Florence Park B 2, Chequers C 1; Cricketers Arms 2, Red Lion B Cassington 1.
Section 9: White Hart 0, Kings Arms A 3; Florence Park A 1, Golden Ball 2.
Section 10: White Hart B 1, Kidlington Football Club 2; Crown B 3, Catherine Wheel B 0.
K Baker (Cricketers B) 2, L Hazell (Red Lion A Eynsham), K Giles (Three Pigeons), C Jenkins (Gladiators A), R Townsend, R Goodall (Six Bells C Kidlington), M Warrell (Six Bells A Kidlington).
S Howes (Masons B), S Steedman (Vikings Sports D), P Farrell (New Club B), D Hennessy (Cricketers A), E Humphries (Red Lion B Cassington), H Morgan (White Hart B Wolvercote), B Fenn, J Coffey (Catherine Wheel B), S Ings (Ampleforth Arms B), P O’Gara (White Hart Wytham).
Top Doll Scorers
K Baker (Cricketers B) 17; C Jenkins (Gladiators A) 14; A Shepherd (New Club A)14; R Goodall (Six Bells C Kidlington) 14; A Cross )Six Bells C Kidlington) 14; J Glenister (The Griffin) 14: K Powell (Red Lion A Eynsham) 13; D Walsh (Six Bells C Kidlington) 13; K Giles (Three Pigeon) 13: J Thompson (Yarnton BL) 13.
ABINGDON & DISTRICT LEAGUE
Prem & A Section: Abingdon Con Club A, 4, Fox Steventon 2; Steventon Sports 0, Spread Eagle 6; Abingdon Legion 4, Tandem 2; Berinsfield SC A 2, Abingdon Con Club 4; Plum Pudding 2, Abingdon United B 4.
B Section: Fox Denchworth 6, Red Lion Drayton 0; Spread Eagle B 5, The Vine 1; Plough E Hendred 4, Chequers Charney 2; Abingdon United D 5, College Oak A 1.
C Section: Fleur De Lys 3, Black Horse A 3; Vine 6, Hinds Head 0; Black Horse B 0, Royal Oak 6; Waggon & Horses 4, Stanford FC 2.
D Section: Hatchet 4, Eight Bells 2, Peachcroft SC 5, DC Bystander 1.
E Section: Queens Arms 4, Crown Didcot 2; Morning Star 5, White Horse 1; Red Lion Drayton B 0, Saxton Arms 6; Abingdon United 6, Pack Horse 0; Kennington SC 4, Bear & Ragged Staff 2.
F Section: Harwell Legion 6, Boundary House 0; Spread Eagle 6, Brewery Tap 0; Boundary House 2, Abingdon Arms 4; North Star 2, GoodLake Arms 4; Wheatsheaf Drayton 4, Cross Keys 2.
G Section: Horse & Harrow 3, George & Dragon 3; Red Lion Drayton C 6, Old Anchor 0; North Star 6, Plough W Hanney 0; Plough S Courtenay 2, Plough L Wittenham 4.
H Section: Wheatsheaf Didcot 0, Black Swan 6; Eight Bells 5, Steventon Sports 1; Black Swan 6, Challow Legion 0; Cross Keys 2, Harwell Legion 4; Crown Marcham 0, Plough Appleton 6.
Sixes: D Hudson (Spread Eagle), M Christopher (Abingdon Con Club), A Gregory (Abingdon United D).
BICESTER & DISTRICT LEAGUE (sponsored by Hook Norton Brewery)
League Cup – second round: Shakespeare 0, Launton S&SC A 2; Red Cow 0, Nut Tree 2; Bull & Butcher A 0, Highfield SC A 2; Red Lion Wendlebury 0, Black Bull A 2.
League Plate – first round: Ashton Club 0, White Lion 2; Muddy Duck 2, Bull & Butcher B 0; Bull Launton v Prince of Wales pp; Red Lion Finmere 0, Black Bull 2.
Supplementary Cup – first round: Chearsley Cricketers 1, Barley Mow 2; Bell Bicester 0, White Hart Originals 2; White Horse B 2, Crown Twyford 0; Black Bull C 2, Eight Bells 1; Fountain A 2, Royal Oak 0; Safari Garden 2, Blacks Head 0; Plough Marsh Gibbon 2, Bell Lower Heyford 1; White Hart Wanderers 0, Ex Services 2.
Supplementary Plate – first round: Highfield SC B 2, White Horse A 1; Black Bull D 0, Kings Head B 2; Launton S&SC B 2, Fountain B 0; Red Lion Stratton Audley 2, Crown Gawcott 1.
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