Bowls: Marshall defends his Tait Trophy

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Slateford bowling club’s Robert Marshall won the Tait Trophy for a fifth time having totally dominated the final of the Edinburgh & Leith Champion of Champions event.

Marshall, who has won his club championship no less than 18 times, destroyed former world stage star David McGill in 14 ends in the final at Craigentinny, inflicting a 21-6 defeat on the champion of Braid in front of a healthy-sized crowd.

The final was delayed by 30 minutes due to a deluge of rain but any fears of play becoming a victim of fading light was soon being dispelled with Marshall making a flying start to lead 13-1 after eight ends.

“Davy was only a shadow of his former self and I could see he was struggling to get to grips with both pace and line while I was comfortable with the rink,” said Marshall.

McGill showed a flash of true form at the tenth end and was rewarded with a double to 3 but relief was only temporary as Marshall immediately carded a 3 to move to 16 then, another glimpse of former McGill magic moved him to 6.

It was Marshall’s star that remained in the ascendancy, however, and the defending Tait champion treated the banking to a sparkling 3, 1, 1, finish to 21.

“This victory moves me up to join Davy (McGill) and Colin Mitchell on the five mark so I will be sending a postcard to my young brother Alex (Tattie) who has only won the Tait once (1990) but of he course he hasn’t competed in Edinburgh for a few years.”

McGill said: “This result isn’t about the defeat of McGill it is about Robert Marshall showing once again that he is a top performer and a credit to Slateford and Edinburgh but, more importantly, the sport of bowls at large.”