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


David Lamb & Ryan Fox reach quarter-finals in ESMBA Open Pairs

The ESMBA Open Pairs competition, with the reward of an England World Cup place on offer, took place on Saturday. The father & son combo of Halvergate’s David Lamb & Ryan Fox were in sparkling form in Group 15 with three straight wins. Bob Carter’s England internationals Jason Woods & Chris Willies found the Halvergate pair too hot to handle as they went down by 11-2 against them. Another England international pair, Kent’s Jody Frampton & Richard Stagg, crashed to a 12-6 defeat against Lamb & Fox. The Halvergate pairs third win was by 11-4 against Denise Kirby & Sonia Burden. Woods & Willies finished second in the group with a draw against Frampton and a win against Burden. Wymondham & England bowler Jack Pye teamed up with the talented Oxfordshire & England bowler AJ Brown and reeled off three straight wins to top Group 1. Bob Carter’s Gary Best & Hempnall’s Neil Davidson won Group 10 with two wins and a draw. East Tuddenham’s Elaine & Simon Willies finished third in Group 6 with three points while Forncett’s Jan & Mike Smail finished fourth in Group 3 with one point. The first knock-out round saw David Lamb & Ryan Fox progress with a narrow 10-9 win against Tracey & Nadine Bailey. Gary Best & Neil Davidson joined them in Round 2 of the knock-outs after an impressive 11-3 win against Jon Pitcher & Craig Strong of West Mids. But the first knock-out round saw the end of the road for the other Norfolk players as Jason Woods & Chris Willies lost 11-8 against Saul Featherstone & Glenn Harvey and Jack Pye’s pair went down by 8-5 against Terry & Shannon Mead in a surprise defeat. Knock-out round 2 saw David Lamb & Ryan Fox keep the flag flying for Norfolk as they beat Dorset’s England internationals Sam Harvey & James Smith 9-6. After several years as an England international David Lamb was overlooked this season but he has obviously not let that omission affect his determination on the mat. Norfolk’s other surviving pair, Gary Best & Neil Davidson, found Round 2 a step too far as they lost by 9-4 against Adam Smith & Lee Toleman. Lamb & Fox finally saw their five game winning run come to an end in the quarter-finals as they were beaten 11-3 by Adam Easthope & Nathan Caines who went on to win the event beating Lawrence Moffat & Bronagh Toleman in the final. In the Plate event, for those failing to qualify from the group stages in the main comp, Simon & Elaine Willies reached the semi-finals before losing 8-6 to Steve Stanton & Richard Nicoll.  


Talented Father & Son duo, David Lamb & Ryan Fox

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