Bainfield lost their grip on the Scottish Team Championship Crown with a dramatic shot-margin defeat to Midlothian in yesterday’s first-round clash in Livingston.
The Mixed Team event saw Bainfield share the points 4-4 with Midlothian, but they made a frustrating shot-margin exit when their rivals registered four shots on the final end of the Pairs/Triples/Fours to snatch an 80-79 victory.
Midlothian’s premier league skip Sandy (AJ) Knight was at the helm in the Triples for Gaynor Blair and Ian Forbes against Katherine O’Donnell, Paul Millar and Stuart Patterson.
Bainfield made a mighty count of 5 on the first end but they led only 9-7 after seven then the sudden loss of 5 and 3 put them 15-9 in arrears.
Bainfield were 17-15 up after 13 ends, but Midlothian hit back with a 3 and a 2 to cross 20-17 then moved 20-19 ahead playing the last.
Patterson had the scent of victory until Midlothian’s two game-changing moments, the first coming with Forbes breaking up the Bainfield head with a running bowl that pushed the jack into open space.
The second came from AJ who produced two corking draws that snuggled the jack and survived on to the card to clinch a 22-19 victory for Midlothian.
It was a win Midlothian desperately needed to add to the 27-17 triumph that Morag Walker and Ronnie Duncan had achieved in the Pairs against Dorothy Hunter and Graham Pringle.
Bainfield had made a great start by premier league captain Craig Moss, who beat John Todd 21-17 in the Singles.
The Bainfield tally was doubled to 4 by a winning performance from Mandy O’Donnell, Heather Stoddart, John McDermott and Paul O’Donnell in the Fours. O’Donnell added a six at the seventh to lead 11-5 then traded on the cushion to deliver a 22-14 win over Stacey Laidlaw, Kelly McDougall, Jamie Macnab and Daniel McDougall.
Midlothian’s magic finish across the carpet comprised the double for Knight in the Triples supported by a single each for Duncan and McDougall in the Pairs/Fours respectively.