Edinburgh Bowling League: Brunstane off to flyer

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Brunstane’s debut season in Division 1 of the Alpha Trophies-sponsored Edinburgh Bowling League is off to a flying start with last season’s Division 2 runners-up winning two of their first three matches, bagging an 16 points from a possible 27.

This week’s 5-4 defeat at home to title contenders Parkside was a tremendous effort with the new boys only denied a shock victory by last-end drama.

Wins on the rinks skipped by George Johnstone and Chris Steven looked set to be supported by their colleague Tom Gallagher, who entered his final end defending a 16-14 lead over Paul Veitch. The bonus point from the match aggregate score was also hanging in the balance so, with a swing of three points, the stakes were high for both teams.

Brunstane were hoping to cheer a 7-2 win but Veitch emerged the hero for Parkside as he skipped Craig Boyce, Martin Quinn and Colin Hairs to magic count of 3 that secured a 17-16 victory and clinched a 66-61 aggregate supremacy.

The despair of Gallagher and his front three of D Skirving, A Hay, and J Clydesdale was heightened by the rink of Jamie Gunn conceding an aggregate costly five at their last end to lose 23-10 to Danny McCourt, David Sherriffs, Brian Salvona and Kevin Boyd. Brunstane’s other win was delivered by former Scottish Pairs champion Chris Steven carding a three at his last end to skip his rink to a 17-14 win over Bob Ramsay.

Elsewhere, Maitland delivered a 9-0 home thrashing to a Hillside team anchored at the foot of the table.

Alan Trotter whizzed into a 15-2 lead and skipped Steven Ritchie, Ross Barclay and Alan Sharp to a 22-12 win over BJ Smith while Gary Stout blazed a 15-3 trail en route to skipping Ryan Taylor, Stuart Clark, and Gordon Clark to an 18-11 win over Colin Hill. Graeme McIntosh supported with a 20-11 win over Kyle Newall while Brian Higgins claimed a 20-17 win over Dave Robinson.

Record eight-times winners and defending champions Craigentinny destroyed Tanfield 9-0 on their rivals’ home turf.

Willie McDonald led the away charge, including three counts of 4 as he skipped Gavin Rogers, Stuart Betts and Gordon Bold to a 21-8 win over Andy McNab while Andy Jeffrey enjoyed a purple patch run of 2, 1, 4, 4, as he skipped Craig McCall, Gary Nisbet and Gary Muir to a 17-9 win over David Snodgrass.

David Brown hit the ground running to skip Josh Spalding, Darren Smith and Kevin McFarlane into a 19-6 lead then on to a 20-13 win over Stuart Campbell while Kevin Hunter, Lewis Betts, Andy Caldwell and Danny Gormley edged a 16-15 nail-biter over Liam McKay.

EBL table after three games: Craigentinny 23, Parkside 19, Maitland 17, Brunsatne 16, Northern 15, Tanfield 11, Postal 4, Hillside 3.