Bainfield did enough to keep their Division 1B national indoor bowl league campaign on track with a 88-62 victory over Cumbernauld.
The Edinburgh club lined up shorn of key men Robert Marshall and Jamie Aitken and a late call-off from Chris Wilson caused team manager John to bring in Bill Garden and move up John McDermott from second to third.
“We led from start to finish although our killer instinct could have been sharper,” said Bell. “We top the table on shot margin from Tweedbank after two games and the challenge for us is to stay there.”
McDermott, who skipped for Portobello before switching to Bainfield, lined up at third to James Hogg to form a new backend that proved to be a major influence on the match.
Winning performances by the rinks skipped by Hogg, Paul O’Donnell, and Gavin Smith kept Bainfield in the driving seat and covered the disappointment of a narrow defeat suffered by Colin Hutchison.
Bainfield asserted the authority expected from a home team on the first seven-end phase with a 30-17 domination that was assisted by flying starts from O’Donnell (10-2) and Hogg (9-1).
Smith produced a significant highlight on the second phase with a count of 6 at the 11th end and, with Hogg still on fire to make a 13-4 contribution, the home support were able to cheer a 36-20 score that provided cushion of 29 shots.
Bell expected Bainfield to keep their foot on the accelerator for the third phase but Cumbernauld applied the brakes and showed enough resistance to turn the tables 25-23.
Hogg marked his debut as a Bainfield skip by counting at 15 of the 21 ends and in company with Neil Watson, Garden and McDermott the hastily reformed rink captured the top honours of the match with a 31-11 win over T Simpson.
O’Donnell was ahead 16-8 after 15 ends and skipped Craig Moss (captain), Stuart Patterson and Stevie McLeod to a 20-13 win over R Fleming.
Smith’s count of 6 stretched Chris Downie, Stephen Pringle and Alan Brown into a 14-7 lead and they went on to win 20-13 win over J Byron.
Hutchision and his rink of Craig Paterson, Paul Millar and Brian Stoddart carded a 5 to stay in touch at 7-9 but were always chasing and succumbed 22-17 defeat from G Wilson.