THREE teams continue to vie for the Greene King Oxford & District League Premier Section title in a nail-biting finish to the season, writes ANDY BEAL.

Swan A and Black Prince are level at the top, with Garsington Sports A only a point behind in third, with two games to go.

Garsington closed in after beating Black Prince 2-1 – 24-27, 23-20, 24-21.

Despite winning the first leg, Prince struggled with Rob Bradford’s 15-doll haul (5-6-4) proving in vain.

Jon Townsend clanged off 13 (6-3-4) as Swan A took full advantage, easing past Six Bells E Kidlington 3-0 in leg scores of 28-21, 23-20, 28-22.

Champions Gladiators A are out of the running after dropping a leg when beating Three Pigeons 29-26, 30-29, 24-25.

Dave Lee, Dave Edwards (both Pigeons) and Tony O’Brien (Gladiators) all hit sixes in the clash.

Swan B were crowned Section 1 champions when beating closest rivals George A 2-1 away from home.

The hosts needed all three points and were looking good after winning the first leg 23-22, but the visitors hit back to take the second 27-24 and the decider on three sticks after they were tied 22-22.

Swan’s Garry Baily hit 15 (4-6-5), with George’s Luke Purcell scoring 14 (4-5-5).

Section 2 leaders Bullnose Morris A need two points to be crowned champions, despite losing 3-0 at home to Tiddington Cricket Club – 21-17, 27-26, 19-16.

Red Lion A Yarnton’s hopes were dented when dropping a point in a 24-20, 23-11,

21-23 defeat of Donnington Club A.

Only two points separate Ampleforth Arms A and Donnington Club C in the race for the Section 3 title.

Ampleforth came from behind to beat Six Bells B Kidlington 17-20, 18-16, 18-14.

And Donnington kept up the pressure with a 3-0 win over Masons Arms A – 13-12, 22-15, 22-14.

The league’s top-scorer Ian Bowler had a rare off day, hitting just seven as Littlemore British Legion A lost 2-1 at home to Queens Head A in scores of 20-15, 18-15, 13-16.

Ady Cross was in sensational form for Six Bells A Kidlington in Section 4, but his 16-doll haul (6-4-6) proved in vain as New Club triumphed 2-1 in scores of 15-17, 20-17, 17-17 (three sticks).

Vikings B need a point to win the title after beating George B 3-0 – 21-10, 18-15, 20-17.

Section 5 is also close, with leaders Red Lion B Yarnton battling to a 2-1 win against Masons Arms B with leg scores of 15-13, 14-12, 13-15.

Second-placed Swan C also dropped a point in beating Northway Club C 14-12, 13-18, 20-17.

Blackbird, who are third, could not take advantage, though, as they failed to take maximum points against White Hart A Wolvercote in a 13-9, 11-12, 10-4 triumph.

Vikings Sports D went top of Section 6 after beating previous leaders Seacourt Bridge 3-0 – 15-12, 15-13, 16-9.

Section 7 remains tight, with Bletchingdon Sports Club sharing top spot with Tandem after defeating Gladiators D 2-1 with leg scores of 13-9, 15-16, 12-9.

Gladiators C and White Hart B both hit 24 dolls in their Section 8 match, but it was the latter who won 7-8, 6-3, 11-13.



Premier/Section 1: Black Prince 1, Garsington Sports A 2; Gladiators A 2, Three Pigeons 1; The George A 1, The Swan B 2; The Swan A 3, Six Bells E 0; The Woodman 2, Chequers C 1.

Section 2: Six Bells D 0, Black Horse B 3; Bullnose Morris A 0, Tiddington Cricket Club 3; Garsington Sports B 1, Florence Park B 2; Donnington Club A 1, Red Lion A 2; Queens Head B 1, Gladiators B 2.

Section 3: Six Bells B 1, Ampleforth Arms A 2; Littlemore BL A 1, Queens Head A 2; Masons Arms A 0, Donnington Club C 3; Rose Hill Club 2, Vikings Sports A 1; Red Lion A 3, Chequers A 0.

Section 4: Vikings Sports B 3, The George B 0; Ampleforth Arms B 0, Donnington Club B 3; Green Road Club 1, Bullnose Morris B 2; New Club 2, Six Bells A 1.

Section 5: Red Lion B 2, Masons Arms B 1; Democrats Club A 2, Cricketers Arms 1; Northway Club C 1, The Swan C 2; Florence Park Club B 1, Vikings Sports C 2; White Hart A 1, The Blackbird 2.

Section 6: Vikings Sports D 3, Seacourt Bridge 0; Cowley Workers Club 3, North Oxford Con Club 0; Kidlington FC 1, Catherine Wheel B 2; Marston BL B 3, Littlemore BL B 0.

Section 7: Golden Ball A 3, Northway Club B 0.

Section 8: Gladiators C 1, White Hart B 2; Headington Con Club 3, Democrats Club B 0: Catherine Wheel A 3, White Hart 0.

Top doll scorers: 16 – A Cross (Six Bells A Kidlington). 15 – G Bailey (Swan B), R Bradford (Black Prince). 14 – L Purcell (George A). 13 – D Lee (Three Pigeons), S Reeves, R Charlton (Vikings B), J Townsend (Swan A), R Goodall (Garsington Sports B), C Walsh (Gladiators D).

Sixers: A Cross 2 (Six Bells A Kidlington), G Bailey (Swan B), L Purcell (George A), D Lee, D Edwards (Three Pigeons), T O’Brien (Gladiators A), S Reeves, R Charlton (Vikings Sports B), R Bradford (Black Prince), J Townsend (Swan A), S Walton (Donnington Club A).

Blobbers: C Williams, A Woodley (Ampleforth Arms B), S Bradbury (Cowley Workers), A Thompson (Golden Ball A), M Davidson (Democrats Club B), M Tutty, D Pym (Littlemore BL B), P O’Gara (White Hart Wytham).


Cock Inn 8, Masons Arms B 2; Masons Arms A 7, Oxford Yeoman B 3; Black Prince A 4, Black Prince B 6; Queens Head A 7, Enstone SSC 3; Kings Head 4, Cinnamon Stick 6; Oxford Yeoman A 10, Queens Head B 0; Elm Tree 0, Stonesfield SSC 10; Killingworth Castle 2, Red Lion 8; George & Dragon 1, Three Horseshoes 9; Black Prince B 10, Chadlington SSC 0.

Top Scorer: 22 C Buckingham (Masons Arms A).

Sixers: M Foreman 2, N King & C Price (all Black Prince B), R Johnson (Chadlington SSC), P King (Masons Arms B), J Glenister (Queens Head A), T Lay (Oxford Yeoman A).