"I am a Norfolk man and Glory in being so." Horatio Nelson

All Welsh Final as Jack Pye fails to retain English Masters title

Despite showing great form throughout the SMPT English Masters in Essex Wymondham’s Jack Pye failed to retain the title after losing to Northants bowler Edward Sawbridge. Pye reeled off five straight wins in his group to reach the Cup Knock-outs and then defeated Wendy Ford 12-5 and Lee Lewis 10-9 to earn a last 16 match against Sawbridge but the Northants player showed his class to win 10-3. Owen Cranston of County Council finished second in his group to also qualify for the main competition and beat Andrew Shorney 16-4 and Rob Wade 15-6 in the first two knock-out rounds to also reach the last 16. That proved to be the end of the road though as Cranston lost 10-7 against Trevor Brian in a tight game. Pye & Cranston were joined in the Cup knock-outs by Simon Warnes of Horsford BC who finished second in his group behind Steve Burrows with three wins, one draw and one defeat. Warnes then found himself facing the talented Danny Winmill in the first knock-out round and lost 14-5. Wymondham’s Mark Linsdell finished second in his group behind Tony Ealham of Essex to qualify for the Cup knock-outs but went down 16-3 against Welshman Andrew Jones in the first knock-out round. Three Wymondham players qualified for the secondary Plate competition. Chris Mann finished fourth in a strong group and lost 13-8 to Elliott James in the first knock-out round. Jack Marshall also finished fourth in his group and then lost to Aaron Clare by 14-4 in the first knock-out round. Debbie Pye finished fourth in her group but then lost 14-2 against Finbarr Boyle in the first knock-out stage. Three players finished in the bottom two of their groups and therefore played in the Shield event. Laura Hawksworth of Deaf Sports was sixth in her group and then beat Andy Philbrick in the first knock-out round but then lost 12-7 to Barry Whitburn. David Blundell of Wortwell was fifth in his group and then lost 13-5 to Steve Jordan in the knock-outs. It was a major surprise to see Hempnall’s Neil Davidson struggle in his group where he finished in fifth place. It was less of a surprise to then see a player of Davidson’s class perform well in the Plate section where he beat Mio Kontic 22-3, Susan Banfield 12-7, Benny Bass 10-8, Bent Nielsen 13-7 and Greg Puttock 12-10 to reach the Shield Final where he played Tony Wall but lost by 12-7. The new English Masters champion is Stephen Williams who beat Sean Hughes 12-10 in an all Welsh Final. The Plate Final was won by Dafydd Howell of Wales who beat England’s Jamie Crozier 12-9 in the final.