Bowls: Solid Wood spurs East Lothian on

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East LOTHIAN Indoor Bowls Club marched into the semi-finals of the Seniors League Cup with a commanding 25-shot victory (75-50) over Perth at the Inveralmond stadium in Livingston.

The Perth team contained former caps Doug Copland, Willie Taylor and Dougie Lambert (outdoor) but the East A champions couldn’t match the East B team fortified by several star figures.

Willie Wood, his cousin Brian Bisset, Jock Brodie and Frank Gray are major figures and remain ultra-competitive in the twilight years of colourful careers.

Wood, in particular, continues to lead a hectic competitive career up to international level but still finds the time, energy and enthusiasm to lend his skills to the Seniors brigade at the Meadowmill Stadium in Tranent.

And Scotland’s 73-year-old First Ambassador of the Sport of Bowls played the star role with his winning performance supported by success in the rinks skipped by Brodie and Gray.

Wood made an outstanding 17-2 contribution as East Lothian threw down the gauntlet with a 37-30 lead in the first nine ends then the spotlight fell on Brodie and a 15-3 purple patch as the Garden County flourished 38-20 over the final eight ends.

Wood experienced a quieter second half but still inflicted major damage on the Perth cause as he skipped Alister Russell, Ross Maguire and Tom Young to a 24-6 win over Lambert.

Brodie showed typical character when under the cosh at 12-5 down he sparked a strong and exciting revival of 1, 4, 1, (1), 4, (2), 2, 3 to skip Jim Neilson, George McLean and Brian Bissett to a 20-15 win over Tom Clark.

Gray raced ahead with an early run of 1, 5, 5 to lead 11-3 and although life did become tougher, he went on to skip Jimmy Smith, George Marshall and Jim Robertson to a 21-16 win over Copland.

The only East Lothian setback came with the narrow 13-10 defeat of Arthur Duncan, Billy Higgins, John Hamilton and John Holmes at the hands of Taylor.

East Lothian will play Elgin at Dundee in their semi-final on January 25.