ON A fine but cloudy night, Brian Coleman and Bill Rodden (Zetland) were the surprise but well deserved winners of the end of season Burscough League pairs competition.
During finals night, on the wet Botanic Gardens green, they were never troubled with Bill leading consistently well and Brian playing exceptional bowls at the back which resulted in their opponents being unable to compete with them. In the quarter-finals they beat their Zetland club mates of Mick Coward and Dave Mason 21-11 while in the semi-finals they beat favourites Darren Evans and Mike Tunstall (Burscough RBL) 21-12.
In the other half of the draw, Duncan Crabtree and Peter Iddon (Longton VM) accounted for Gordon Butler and Dennis Hunter (Croston Subscription) 21-16 in the quarter-final and John Hughes and Dave Pennington (Botanic Gardens) 21-11 in the semi-finals.
Following the semi-final results, Duncan and Peter were favourites to take this title for the second time ten years after their first triumph but Brian and Bill had another ideas. However, in the early stages of the final, Duncan and Peter led 7-5 after eight ends. Two ends later, the scores were level at eight across.
Then, Bill and Brian took command of the game scoring eight chalks over the next three ends playing their favourite three quarter length marks over the crown of the green.
Despite a mini revival by their opponents over the next two ends to reduce the deficient to 11-16, Bill and Brian scored a two at end 16 to lead 18-11 and then scored three chalks to their opponents one over the last four ends to win the game 21-12 and to take the coveted title for the 1st time.
Roy Wignall (President) congratulated the winners and runners-up as well as all the prizewinners before presenting the trophy and prize money. The League secretary, Keith Robinson, thanked Botanic Gardens BC and their members for all their help in hosting the night and for the use of the excellent facilities including their green which was in superb condition despite the bad weather.
He also thanked the organisers and green keepers at all the qualifying venues for all their help and to the competitors for their excellent play and sportsmanship throughout the event.