Winter League gets back on track
AFTER a gap of seven weeks due to the severe weather conditions, the Pro Shop Winter League got back on track.
Conditions were far from perfect for round five but, at least, enough players completed their rounds to make it viable.
TEAM 1 VERSUS TEAM 4: Team 4, headed by Paul McAleavey, kept themselves in contention for honours with an excellent 302 - 218 points win over team 1.
The best players for team 4 were Paul McAleavey 30 points, Sydney Pepper 30 points, Morris Phillips 28 points, C. Sands 27 points and Kieran Meade 26 points.
For team 1, Kerry McCluskey had 31 points, John Poots 26, Robin Madeley 26 and William McCandless 26.
I think that team 1 will be glad to see the end of the Winter League because, after five rounds, they sit at the bottom of the table, pointless.
TEAM 2 VERSUS TEAM 3: Two of the top teams in the Pro Shop Winter League, 2 and 3, met in round five.
Dougie Stevenson's team 3 went into the match as league leaders but were beaten 245-262.
Dougie's team had nine cards returned while team 2 had 10 returns. That one card made all the difference.
Best for team 2 were Jim Cochrane 31, Alex Clarke 29, Gareth McGregor 28, Neville Reid 28, Ivan Rushe 27, Merton McDowell 27 and Aidan Doran 26.
Team 3 have slipped down to third place but they are only one point in arrears.
Their top players in round five were Malcolm Hanna 32, Ian Magowan 31, Michael Allison 29, Norman Doak 28 and Trevor Mulholland 27.
TEAM 5 VERSUS TEAM 7: Teams 5 and 7 are both struggling in the Pro Shop Winter League. When they met in round five, John Hanna's team 5 emerged victorious by 308 points to 221.
Team 5's score was the best of round five and they got a bonus point. It's too little, too late, unfortunately.
Paul McDonald was top scorer for team 5 with 30 points. Cathal O'Neill, Seamus McGrath, John Cowan and John Hanna himself all did well to score 27 points. David Cherry had 26 points, which, in the conditions, was very acceptable.
An in-form Connor Mulholland was the top man for team 7 with 31 points. Nigel Bryson had 28, Jim Minnis had 27 and Aidan Lavery had 27.
TEAM 6 VERSUS TEAM 8: Team 6, captained by Trevor Woods, won their fourth match in a row when they defeated team 8 by 278 points to 234.
Twelve players turned out for team 8 but three of them managed to get disqualified. That's what cost them the match.
Trevor Woods led from the front for team 6 with a score of 30 points. Cecil Johnston added 29; Alan Dale had 28, Gerry Blevins 28, Colin McDonald 27, Philip Strong 27 and Robert McClatchey 27.
Philip Mallon shot an excellent 32 points for team 8. Jack Bickerstaff had 29, Vaughan Lamont 28, Sherwin Curran 27 and Brian Parkes 26.
THE TOP INDIVIDUALS - The individual prizes for round five were awarded as follows:
Section 0-9 - Winner: Philip Mallon, 32 points.
Section 10-17 - Winner: Malcolm Hanna 32 points; Second: Jim Cochrane 31; Third: Ian Magowan 31.
Section 18+ - Winner: Jack Bickerstaff 29; Second: Morris Phillips 28 points.