Bainfield enhanced their prospects of holding on to their indoor bowls Premier League status with a significant away victory over Midlothian at Dalkeith, beating their fellow strugglers by seven shots (77-70) in a hard-fought match.
The result moves Bainfield six points ahead of bottom club Coatbridge in the ultra competitive A section and two points clear of Midlothian entering the second half of the campaign.
Bainfield won the 80-end encounter 44-36, but Midlothian will be understandably frustrated that to win on three rinks but lose the match is rough justice.
Midlothian did come close to stealing a match victory on the finishing line, but with only four shots separating the teams on the major scoreboard, Bainfield stayed strong with a single for Paul O’Donnell and a double for Gavin Smith
The phase scoring shows Midlothian nudging the first seven ends 28-27 then Bainfield making a strong 31-20 show on the second before holding on by restricting the home side to a 22-19 edge of the third.
The hero figure for Bainfield was last weekend’s villain, Colin Hutchison, while the successful skips for Midlothian were Colin Walker, Ronnie Duncan and team captain Billy Peacock.
Hutchison’s 16-shot triumph over Martin Yuill, Drew Pearson, David Salkeld and AJ Knight was enough to more than cover the narrow defeats suffered by the rinks skipped by Smith, O’Donnell and Robert Marshall.
Hutchison made a strong start to skip Daniel Gormley, Paul Millar and team captain Craig Moss into a 24-6 lead after 15-ends, then celebrated an impressive 28-12 win.
Marshall and his rink of Neil Watson, Alan Brown and James Hogg were slow off the mark and were in trouble at 14-4 down, but managed to steady the ship and restrict the damage to a 19-13 defeat by Jamie Aitken, Scott Matthews, Ian Brown and Peacock.
Smith and his front three of Chris Downie, Brian Stoddart and John McDermott might well have suffered a roasting after a scorching start by Walker saw him skip the home rink of Robert Campbell, David Munro and Lindsay Plenderleith into a 10-0 lead, but Smith and Co rallied to 10-11 and in a seven-end battle to the line only went down by two shots (16-14).
O’Donnell skipped Craig Paterson, Stuart Patterson and Stevie McLeod into a promising 12-4 lead over Jamie McNab, Ian Forbes, Martin Wyllie and Duncan.
Duncan and Co, however, fought like lions and roared back to 17-15, then snatched a 23-22 victory despite losing the end count 12-9.