BOWLS: Oxfordshire battle home to keep cup hopes alive

Witney Mills’s Chris Weller will play his first Middleton Cup game for Oxon against Hampshire on Saturday

Witney Mills’s Chris Weller will play his first Middleton Cup game for Oxon against Hampshire on Saturday

First published in Sport

Oxfordshire kept their Middleton Cup hopes alive with a 121-110 win over the Isle of Wight at Shanklin.

The 15-7 points victory means that Oxon are still in with an outside chance of qualifying from South Group Section B.

But, with Hampshire, who Oxfordshire entertain at Oxford City & County on Saturday, running riot with a 60-shot win over Kent, the south coast are hot favourites for top spot.

At five ends, Oxon led by 20 shots, with four rinks opening up leads.

By ten ends the Islanders had closed to 12, but with Ian Snowdon’s rink dominating play and the fours of Mark Sykes and Alan Prew also leading, Oxfordshire still looked in a comfortable position.

However, a mixture of good play and good fortune saw the Isle of Wight push Oxon all the way with five of the six rinks settled by two shots or less.

Oxon’s Paul Sharman led early on, but his opposite number, John Crews, came back to win by 17-16.

Mark Charlett and Baden Sparkes’s rinks rallied well to draw 17-17 and lose 18-17 respectively, having held ‘game’ before the final bowls.

A seven and four picked up on consecutive ends saw Darren Griffith overtake Prew, who went down 22-20.

On the end rink, Snowdon’s four were pegged back and went into the last end a shot behind, but a great opening bowl from Dean May and a drawn second shot from the Oxon skip with the game’s final bowl secured a 24-23 victory.

Sykes’s rink of AJ Docherty, George Schwab and Richard Redford stayed in front throughout to win 27-13. Captain Alan Prew is unavailable for Saturday’s clash with Hampshire, so vice-captain Keith Holloway leads the team.

Calvin Carpenter skips in place of Prew, and Carterton’s Stuart Richens plays at No 3 in his first Middleton Cup game since 2011.

Witney Mills’s Chris Weller makes his debut at No 2 on Sparkes’s rink, replacing Remy Clanfield.

Isle of Wight 110 (7pts), Oxon 121 (15)

(Isle of Wight rinks first)

Rink 1: B Davies, R Smith, M Butchers, J Crews 17, L Young, S Cooper, B Lambourne, P Sharman 16.

Rink 2: J Wilkins, B Price, P Furmidge, D Griffith 22, K Holloway, I Henwood, C Carpenter, A Prew 20.

Rink 3: S New, P Knight, J Pearce, A Cawdell 18, R Pink, Re Clanfield, C Whitehead, B Sparkes 17.

Rink 4: R Hayes, J Marsh, T Lloyd, T Meller 17, S Watts, G May, J King, M Charlett 17.

Rink 5: M Cox, C New, S Hamblin, K Beckett 13, AJ Docherty, G Schwab, R Redford, M Sykes 27.

Rink 6: B Bridgeman, G Day, D Gustar, A Best 23, D May, K Alder, N Lewis, I Snowdon 24.

Morris cuts short Oxford United loan and returns to Norwich City

Oxford Mail:

12:30pm Thursday 23rd October 2014

CARLTON Morris has ended his loan at Oxford United and returned to parent club Norwich City.

Update: Caterham F1 staff have been locked out of West Oxfordshire base

Oxford Mail:

10:50am Thursday 23rd October 2014

THERE are reports Caterham F1 staff have been locked out of the West Oxfordshire site this morning.

Hot-shot Danny Hylton on a high at Oxford United

Oxford Mail:

9:30am Thursday 23rd October 2014

DANNY Hylton thinks he is playing the best football of his career after a brace for Oxford United on Tuesday night made it ten goals for the season already.

ICE HOCKEY: Stars slip to double defeat

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Thursday 23rd October 2014

Oxford City Stars remain rooted to the foot of the South Division 1 table after suffering back-to-back defeats.

ATHLETICS: 'Retired' Yamauchi shines

Oxford Mail: Mara Yamauchi

8:00am Thursday 23rd October 2014

Oxford's Mara Yamauchi showed she is not taking her retirement too lightly with an impressive display at the Cabbage Patch 10 in Twickenham.

ATHLETICS: Comeback queen Sophie Carter regains Abingdon Marathon crown

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Thursday 23rd October 2014

Sophie Carter showed her injury problems were fully behind her with a dominant victory at the Milton Park Abingdon Marathon.

James Lewis hoping London Welsh win can ignite season

Oxford Mail:

7:50am Thursday 23rd October 2014

JAMES Lewis says a first win will make all the difference to London Welsh’s season.

RUGBY UNION: Welsh coach rings changes for Bordeaux

Oxford Mail: rugby generic

7:00am Thursday 23rd October 2014

London Welsh make ten changes, two of which are positional, for tonight’s game against Bordeaux Begles at Oxford’s Kassam Stadium (7.45pm).

RUGBY UNION: Ferguson: London Welsh should expect big physical test

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Thursday 23rd October 2014

Matt Ferguson says London Welsh must be prepared for a huge physical battle if they are to finally break their duck tonight.

RUGBY UNION: Flanker Jones eyes Wasps pro deal

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Thursday 23rd October 2014

Oxford University flanker Gus Jones is determined to make a career with their most recent opponents Wasps.

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