Table- TOPPING Parkside’s colossal 9-0 away win over early pace-setters Maitland has thrown down the gauntlet to defending champions Craigentinny in Division 1 of the Edinburgh Bowling League.
“Whilst there is extra pressure in leading from the front it is an encouraging position for us to be four points ahead of the chasing pack approaching the half-way stage,” said Parkside spokesman Robert Donaldson.
Maitland’s opening run of excellent form has deserted them and two consecutive 9-0 defeats mean they sit just above the relegation zone, ahead of strugglers Summerside and Leith.
Craigentinny are on the heels of Parkside, although they have lost ground despite a 6-3 away win at Queensberry, who went all last season without losing at home. The defeat by Craigentinny ended that run but Queensbury still lie third.
Hillside are always on the hunt for valuable away points so are delighted by a 6-3 victory over Summerside. Leith – last season’s Division 2 champions – continue to find life tough in top flight but did put up a fight in their 6-3 defeat at Northern.
The league positions are, Parkside 39; Craigentinny 35; Queensberry 29; Hillside 29; Northern 27; Maitland 26; Summerside 16; Leith 15.
The match at Maitland saw the home team come close to banking two points with Alan Flockhart skipping his rink into a 15-14 lead playing the last but denied by the loss of a three to Steven Rennie, Dave Sherriffs, Danny Jackson, and Robert Donnaldson.
Parkside enjoyed more comfortable success on the rinks skipped by Paul Veitch, Derek Smith, and Neil Watson although it took a 4, 2, 1 finish for Watson to skip Craig Bryce, Dave McCourt, and Kenny Boyd to a 19-13 win over Brian Higgins.
Veitch zipped into a 10-0 led en route to skipping Alan Hargan, Graham Fraser and Brian Salvona to an 18-8 win over Alan Trotter, while Derek Smith pulled away from 10-8 to skip Ewan Diven, Ian Fleming, and Willie Watson to a 20-13 win over Graeme McIntosh.
The away heroes for Craigentinny were Willie McDonald, Andy Caldwell and Andrew Jeffrey but it was a night to forget for their fellow skip Kevin McFarlane. McDonald carded a magnificent seven to lead 10-1 then skipped David Torrance, Scott Duncan, and Daniel Gormley to a 21-10 win over Scott Walker. Caldwell stormed to a 20-15 win with a 3, 1, 5, 2 finish against John Kidd.
Jeffrey led all the way to beat Frank O’Reilly 14-10, but Queensberry banked three points from Brian Pollard skipping Jimmy McDougall, Ryan Gardner, and Mick Imrie Jnr to a whopping 25-3 win over McFarlane.
Hillside stole a point from 18-7 down when Colin Bell climaxed his fightback with a mighty five at the last to finish 20-20 with David Poole, while BJ Smith added a 22-13 win over Norrie Chalmers and Gary Muir beat Peter Miller 17-12.
Summerside were relieved when Keith Taylor held on from 9-1 up to scramble a 13-12 win over Colin Hairs.
Northern’s Ian Miller edged a 16-15 nail biter over Nicky Brown of Leith, and Jamie Reid escaped with a 17-17 peel against Drew Dodds. Gordon Wilson Jnr beat Gavin Ramsay 17-13; but a double at the last saw Craig Ramsay beat Jim Bathgate 15-13.