Bowls: Defeat leaves Bainfield battling relegation

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Bainfield are facing a battle against relegation from Division B of the gents indoor bowls Premier League after a 92-58 defeat away to Ayr.

The match was always going to be tough but the Edinburgh elite will be stunned by the manner of the setback as they lost on all four rinks and were outgunned on all three phases of the match.

“The nature of our defeat is a blow and the price paid is to drop into second from bottom so the danger signals are now flashing. However, we are not dead and buried as Aberdeen share the six-point mark with us while East Lothian and Ayr are just two points ahead,” reflected player manager Gavin Smith.

Smith is right to see an escape route to safety starting with an away visit to bottom club Abbeyview, but that becomes a must-win fixture as the final two games are at home to leaders Falkirk and away to East Lothian.

The carpet at Ayr was an unfamiliar one to Bainfield and the unfolding picture of a team forced to operate against the collar ended in defeat for the rinks skipped by Smith, James Hogg, Craig Paterson, and Robert Marshall.

Bainfield made an encouraging enough start on the first seven-end phase being just slightly off the pace at 28-23.

It became a darker picture on the second phase with Bainfield suffering a 30-17 defeat that set them back 18 shots overall.

Hopes of a Bainfield recovery soon faded as Ayr continued in the ascendancy and confirmed their overall supremacy with all four home rinks making a positive contribution to a 34-18 domination.

Smith got closest to a win having skipped Josh Spalding, Steven Rennie and Colin Hutchison into an 11-2 lead after seven ends and still looking good at 18-11. However, a late collapse of 1, 2, 1, 4 cost him a 19-18 defeat by Stuart Wyllie.

Hogg and his rink of Mark McIntosh, Brian Stoddart and John McDermott slipped from 5-5 to 15-9 and never quite got to grips with Colin Smith in a 19-15 defeat.

Paterson and his front-three of Jamie Reid, Danny McCourt and Daniel Gormley dropped a seven at end six to trail 10-3 and lean times followed in a 25-11 defeat from Jim Seaton.

A miserable experience for Marshall and his rink of Graeme McIntosh, Tam Ebbs and Kevin Tennant saw them face a 14-3 deficit after eight ends then a rally to 14-9 was killed by the loss of 3, 4, 4, 1, 1, 2 that led to a 29-14 defeat from Jim Cuthbertson.