West Lothian IBC saw their prospects of finishing top of the A section of the indoor bowls Premier League improved by a comfortable 21-shot victory (88-67) over Midlothian at the Inveralmond stadium, Livingston.
The sequence of results saw WL move two points clear with just three fixtures to complete however their run-in is paved with danger with challenging away visits to Bainfield and Falkirk followed by a home game against Coatbridge.
Defeat for Midlothian puts the recent 2011 national champions in a serious position as they occupy the relegation/status quo play-off position of second bottom, four points ahead of Coatbridge but four points behind improving East Lothian and Bainfield.
“Our expectations weren’t high against West Lothian but we were doing well at just five shots adrift after 11-ends however they accelerated 31-9 over the next five ends and that put them out of sight for us,” said team manger Frank Gray.
West Lothian moved 28-21 ahead on the first seven-end phase then stretching their match lead to 18 with a 33-22 dominance of the second before adding the third 27-24.
Billy Peacock did his best to inspire his Midlothian colleagues by skipping Jamie Aitken, Scott Matthews and Ian Brown into a handsome 18-8 lead but got no great response as he delivered a 26-19 win over Dougie Mitchell, Scott Logan, Des Hagart and the younger of the Speirs brothers, James.
Speirs made his major impression on the WL effort with a run of 2, 2, 5 to skip Cameron Greer, Ian Drysdale and Bryan Cooper to a 24-11 win over Andrew Kelly, David Salkeld, David Munro and AJ Knight. Allison did even better for WL, though, as he scored 2, 1, 1, 1, 5, 1 in skipping Paul Lyans, Raymond Logan and Stuart Johnston to a 24-9 win over Robert Campbell, Drew Pearson Lindsay Plenderleith and Colin Walker.
Logan and his rink of David Wilson Snr, Blair Mackie and Jamie Gracie looked set for a good victory at 21-13 up but conceded 4, 3, 1 on the run in to finish peels with Jamie MacNab, Ian Forbes, Danny McDougall and Ronnie Duncan.
Victory for the defending national champions was no surprise over their relegation-zoned visitors however the major impact on West Lothian’s standing in the league table came with joint leaders Falkirk’s defeat at Bainfield.
Meanwhile East Lothian continued their escape from the relegation zone with a battling 74-70 away victory over Coatbridge with wins on the rinks skipped by Willie Wood and Scott Kennedy making the difference.