E&L make final of Cities & Counties

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Edinburgh & Leith 
continue to shine in the Cities & Counties Championship for the Andrew Hamilton Trophy and the East section winners produced a sparkling performance to beat Dumfriesshire 
111-100 in the semi-final on a splendidly prepared green at Kirkliston.

Team manager Willie Watson fielded the same team that had served up a tremendous effort to come from behind and triumph over Lanarkshire West in the previous night’s re-
arranged quarter-final at Larbert.

E&L were slow out of the traps at Kirkliston but didn’t lose much ground with a 42-38 loss of the first seven ends so a 36-30 increase in pace on the second phase nosed them into a two-shot lead before closing 37-28 on the third.

“I am impressed by the spirit our team continues to show under pressure and delighted with a battling display that produced four winning rinks,” said Watson.

Paul O’Donnell led the E&L charge with winning support coming from the rinks skipped by Willie McDonald, James Hogg and Robert Marshall while team captain Billy Mellors finished peels leaving Mal 
Higginbotham as the only victim.

O’Donnell made an inspirational start with a run of 3, 1, 2, 1, 1, to lead 8-0 then at 8-3 he added 2, 4, 2 to skip Neil Watson, Craig Paterson and Paul Veitch into a 16-3 lead and on to a 22-11 victory over Ray Graham.

McDonald stood 10-10 after 13 ends then produced an 
18-15 victory over Andy Coltart by skipping Andrew Caldwell, Gavin Smith and Jamie Gracie on a late run of 2, 1, 2, 2.

Hogg lost a 6 on his third end and trailed Dumfriesshire captain Colin Peacock 14-9 after eight ends but a strong recovery that included a run of 1, 4, 1, 1, 1 saw him skip Scott Noble, 
Stuart Campbell and Darren Hush to a 21-18 win.

Marshall faced a major 
challenge at 14-3 down after ten ends but he produced a spectacular run of 2, 2, 3, 2, 2, 2, 2, that saw him skip Alan 
Trotter, Brian Stoddart and John McDermott to a 19-18 win over Steven Lowther.

Mellors produced some corking draws as he skipped Kevin Hunter, Andy Sneddon and Colin Hutchison to a 16-16 peel with Les Moffat.

Higginbotham and his rink of Craig McCall, David Brown and Robert Donaldson made an encouraging start to lead 8-1 but saw their score collapse to 14-8 down and they slithered to a 
22-15 defeat from Bob Steele.

Last night’s prelim round results in the Edinburgh Top Ten: Corstorphine 5, Portobello 3; Brunstane 2, Blackhall 6; Balerno 2, Slateford 6; Postal 6, Queensberry 2; Tipperlin 0, Whitehouse & Grange 8; Dean 3, Ardmillan 5; Wardie 6, Dudley 2; Mayfield 8, Lutton Place 0; Merchiston 3, Currie 5; Fountain 3, Goldenacre 5; Willowbrae 2, Sighthill 6; Maitland 2, Hillside 6.