Dean Fleming and Shona Johnstone into round two at Ayr

Shona Johnstone
Shona Johnstone
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Edinburgh District 15 challengers Dean Fleming of Currie and Shona Johnstone of Merchiston scored good first-round wins at the Bowls Scotland National Championships at Ayr Northfield in the Men’s Singles and Ladies’ event.

But their District 14 counterparts Darren McKenny of Pilrig and Alison McDougall of Maitland were defeated.

However, Billy Mellors – winner of the 2006 title when with Goldenacre – served up a strong display to carry the banner of Haddington and East Lothian into the second round and was joined by West Lothian challenger Andy Dunnett of Queensferry.

Fleming registered three counts of 4 to lead Allan Barrie of Kirkintilloch 16-9 then answered the loss of a single with a run of 1, 1, 3 to clinch a 21-10 win in 18 ends.

Mellors, playing on the same late session, had his work cut out to beat Graeme Gwynne of Sandyhills 21-17 in 23 ends having picked up from 11-10 down to cross to 14 and then answering pressure at 20-17 with a single to 21.

Dunnett was an early afternoon starter and the two times WL Master zipped into a 20-6 lead but it was five ends later before he carded the single for a 21-14 win in 20 ends over Gary Thorburn of Gala Waverley.

High expectations that McKenny would add the Singles to his Pairs title of 2012 were dashed by a 21-9 defeat from Paul Carnegie of Newgate in 19 ends.

Johnstone, a former winner of the Edinburgh Open at Balgreen, showed her tournament level of concentration to push on from 9-9 and beat Marjory Thomson of Errol, 21-9, in 17 ends.

Dee Hoggan of Tranent, the Junior Singles champion in 2009, raced into a 10-0 lead then clinched a 21-10 win in 17 ends over Sharon McCallum of Brock and was joined in round two by West Lothian ace Lorraine Craig.

Craig of Glenmavis (Bathgate) – national champion in 2007 and 2009 – added 1, 3, 1, 1, 2, 3 to lead Margaret Morrison of Nitshill & Hurlett, 16-4, then wrapped up a 21-10 win in 19 ends.

But there was to be know second round appearance for McDougall with the Maitland star losing ground from 12-14 in a 21-16 defeat from Stephanie Bell of Howard Park.

An eye caching first-round clash in the Ladies’ Pairs between four-times champions Leanne and Lauren Baillie of Cockenzie & Port Seton and three-times champions Sandra Steven and Kirsteen McLelland of Uphall Station stood 12-12 before ending 15-12 in favour of the West Lothian duo.

Neal Rooney, Christian Berra and Craig Duffus of Edinburgh club Postal exited the Men’s Triples in the second round, losing 13-8 to Castle Douglas having beaten Windygates 14-13 with a 1, 1, 1, 5, (2) finish.