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

West Mids retain I.C.C Premier Rinks title as Norfolk fail to progress

West Mids are once again ESMBA I.C.C Premier Rinks champions after comfortably defeating Hampshire at Solihull Indoor Bowling Club. Norfolk made the decision to enter the competition this year but due to the unavailability of some players the team consisted of a mixed side of both Premier and “A” team bowlers who found the opposition too strong on the day. What was planned as a preliminary round became a one day event after the withdrawal of Devon, Cornwall, Somerset and Kent left just eight of the seventeen county Premier sides competing for the title. Norfolk were drawn in the group with Dorset, Hampshire and Herefordshire. The other group consisted of Essex, Northamptonshire, Surrey and West Midlands. The winners of each group would progress to the final. Each game was over 12 ends played to ESMBA rules. Norfolk produced some spirited performances but were found wanting against the other three counties losing to Herefordshire by 1 shot, and Dorset and Hampshire by 15 shots as Hampshire claimed their place in the final. The top rink for Norfolk was Kerry Greenacre, John Jeffery, Jack Marshall and Keith Cooke. They beat a Herefordshire rink by 13-10, lost by 12-9 against a Dorset rink and won their last game by 12-8 against a Hampshire rink. They were the only Norfolk rink to win in the game against Hampshire. Elaine Willies, Donna Lamb, Jamie Forster & David Lamb won 19-8 against Herefordshire, drew 10-10 with a Dorset rink and lost by 20-5 against Hampshire. The other two Norfolk rinks lost all their games with Mike Tate, Rob Howlett, Jason Woods & Simon Willies losing by 19-11, 16-7 & 8-7 while Jean Woods, Ray Lamb, Robbie Lamb & Melly Woods lost by 13-6, 14-11 & 14-11.Player-Manager Simon Willies issued a great big thank-you to all the Norfolk players for participating, many of whom started their journeys before 5.00 in the morning. Understandably these one-day events take place in the Midlands but leave Norfolk as one of the counties dis-advantaged by the long journey followed by an early start time.

BC2 rs20

Halvergate's Kerry Greenacre & Keith Cooke were part of Norfolk's top rink in Solihull