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.

FOOTBALL: Mike Ford appointed new Banbury United manager

Oxford Mail:

11:47am Friday 22nd May 2015

Banbury United have appointed former Oxford City boss Mike Ford as their new manager.

Oxford United stepping up interest in striker Ryan Taylor

Oxford Mail:

9:30am Friday 22nd May 2015

Ryan Taylor remains firmly on Oxford United’s radar despite the signing of Kemar Roofe, according to head coach Michael Appleton.

LONDON WELSH: Olly Barkley to have role in attack plans

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Friday 22nd May 2015

OLLY Barkley will have a say in London Welsh’s coaching set-up for their Greene King IPA Championship campaign.

POINT-TO-POINT: Harbour Court in fine form for Kingston Blount

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Friday 22nd May 2015

HARBOUR Court is set to be the star attraction as the curtain comes down on the South Midlands Area season at Kingston Blount, near Chinnor, on Sunday (2.30).

RUGBY UNION: Berry returns for second Chinnor spell

Oxford Mail:

7:30am Friday 22nd May 2015

PROP Andy Berry has rejoined Chinnor ahead of next season’s National League 2 South campaign.

ROWING: Teddies and Abingdon get taste for success

Oxford Mail:

7:30am Friday 22nd May 2015

ST Edward’s and Abingdon warmed up for this week’s National Schools’ Regatta with encouraging wins, writes JOHN WIGGINS.

CRICKET: Will Eason backs debutant Harrison Ward to make mark for Horspath

Oxford Mail:

7:10am Friday 22nd May 2015

HORSPATH skipper Will Eason believes 15-year-old Harrison Ward will be an instant hit on his Division 1 debut at Henley tomorrow.

GOLF: Pepperell has action-packed first day at Wentworth

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Friday 22nd May 2015

Eddie Pepperell had an eventful opening round at the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth yesterday.

TENNIS: Shoot-out keeps St Helen girls on course

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Friday 22nd May 2015

ABINGDON pupils have dominated the local section in the year eight and year ten AEGON Team Tennis Schools National Championships.

CRICKET: Ian Crosby confident of Oxford recovery

Oxford Mail:

6:50am Friday 22nd May 2015

CAPTAIN Ian Crosby is calling on his Oxford side to bounce back from a winless start to their Division 1 campaign when they host promoted Reading tomorrow.

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