Edinburgh bowlers enjoy success as National Championships begin

Dean Mackintosh of London Road Foundry sealed an impressive 21-15 win over Andrew Wilson
Dean Mackintosh of London Road Foundry sealed an impressive 21-15 win over Andrew Wilson
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Day one at the Bowls Scotland National Championships at Ayr Northfield got off to an encouraging start for the two Edinburgh challengers in the Men’s Junior Singles with winning performances served up by Dean Mackintosh of London Road Foundry and Danny McCourt of Parkside.

Mackintosh thrilled his support with an impressive 21-15 win over Andrew Wilson of Burnside having still being locked in a battle for supremacy at 12-12 then zipping to 19 with a run of 1, 4, 2.

McCourt hit the lids to race into a 13-4 lead over Craig Burns of Hurlford then sustained that pace to cross the line a 21-8 winner.

East Lothian and Midlothian also made into the second round with Joe Mower of Haddington pressing on from 13-4 to beat John Reid of Gourock Park, 21-12; and Garry Mitchell of Gilmerton finishing 1, 1 to pip Darien Swankey of Arbroath, 21-18.

Depressing news for West Lothian though came with the 21-5 exit of 19-year-old Darren Pearce at the talented hands of Ryan Murray of Barr & Stroud.

The first day also raised cheers for Edinburgh in the Seniors Singles with winning performances served up by Gordon Ramsay of Slateford and Jim Robertson of Maitland.

Ramsay (District 15) was slow off his mark and trailed 8-1 against Sandy Jenkins of Bainsford then, having battled into the picture at 11-11, slipped to 11-15 but hung in to 15-16 and raced to 21 with a grandstand style finish of 1, 3, 2.

Robertson (District 14) became engaged in a toe-to-toe battle with George Buchan of Stonehaven up to 13-12 then haired out of the bowler’s graveyard with a sprint finish of 2, 1 ,2 ,1, 2 to 21.

East Lothian cheered a win for Andy Burt of Haddington who answered menacing pressure at 16-15 with a 1, 2, 2, finish that saw off John Currror of Stamperland.

Bonnyrigg challenger Lindsay Plenderleith blew his chance to make progress and was joined on the sidelines by Robert Saunders of West Lothian.

Plenderleith excited his strong Midlothian support with a good performance to lead Hugh MacDonald of Blacklandmill, 19-13; but failed to land the knockout punch and, having been closed to 18-20, paid the ultimate price of a 21-20 exit with the loss of a 3 on the 26th end.

Saunders of Whitburn led David Farquharson of Westhill, 9-4, but was peeled at 10-10 then slipped to a 21-14 defeat.

There was also a sunny start for the two Edinburgh challengers in the Seniors Singles with Janet Heatlie of Lutton Place finishing 1, 1, 1, (2), 1 to beat Morag Jones of Muihead & Birkhill, 21-18, and Helen Spence of Brunstane progressing at the 21-11 expense of Liz Peat of Willowbank.

Angie Uttley for West Lothian, Janet Fairnie of East Lothian, and Dot Lavin of Midlothian, also moved into the second round.

London Road Foundary beat Port William, 17-11 in the Mixed Pairs and Whitburn beat Haddington, 14-10. The LRF sister and brother partnership of Gillian and Scott Mackintosh won the national title in 2011.

Wife and husband, Helen and Kenny Girdler of Balerno also progressed, defeating Muirhead & Birkhill 15-11.