Sighthill family duo claim mixed doubles title in Ayr

Lothians quartet John McDermott, his gran Mary Price, Doreen Reeder and John Black all won titles at the Bowls Scotland National Championships
Lothians quartet John McDermott, his gran Mary Price, Doreen Reeder and John Black all won titles at the Bowls Scotland National Championships
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Sighthill captured the mixed pairs title in the Bowls Scotland National Championships at Ayr Northfield after John McDermott skipped his 73-year-old gran Mary Price to glory.

McDermott, 27, was a tower of strength as the family duo turned on the style in the semi-final and the final yesterday.

“My Nan handled the pressure with what looked like nonchalent ease and she produced some big bools. We are fair proud of each other,” said McDermott.

The semi final looked in the bag when Sighthill carded a hat trick of 2s to lead Karen and Graham Dawson of Denny 17-11 but McDermott had to kill situations of real menace before clinching a 17-14 victory.

In a tremendous start to the final, Sightill included counts of 4 and 3 in an inspiring 8-1 lead after five ends and later counts of 4 and 3 kept them in the driving seat at 16-5 up on the impressive Alistair Nimmo and Ruth Stewart of Cupar.

Price nosed the jack at 19-11 up but Sighthill ended up losing a 2, then the loss of a second double raised the match temperature at 19-13 playing the last where she played a welcome facing bowl then followed that with another fine shot that looked priceless to the Sighthill cause. But Stewart managed to brilliantly spread the jack for a hold of 4 with three more of her bowls still to come, but McDermott kept his composure to defuse the situation with two good deliveries that cut his losses to a single of no consequence.

The much-fancied Linlithgow partnership of Lorna Smith and Graeme Byrne were 17-15 victims of Cupar in their semi final having led 15-14 before a nightmare end from both players cost them a 3 at the last.

In other Lothians successes, Kirkliston’s Doreen Reeder won the senior women’s singles, while John Black of Buchan Park (Broxburn) took the gents seniors singles title.

Reeder, on her first-ever playing visit to the national championships, powered to a 21-6 semi-final win in 14 ends against Fiona Kerr of Bellshill & Mossend. In the final, against Margaret Duthie of Abergeldie, she started strongly to card 3, 3 and looked very settled and determined as she set up a 9-3 lead that moved her on to 14-5.

A good facing effort on end 14 yielded a single to 15-7 then got herself 19-9 in front. Duthie closed to 19-13 but normal service was resumed on end 20 with a brilliiant tuck in of the jack yielding her two shots for the title.

Black was also making his first ever appearance in these championships and followed a 21-8 win over Ian Broadfoot of Wellingto Park in his semi final with a surprise win against title favourite Jim Byron of St Monans in a 15-end final. Black was crossed 13-12 but eventually pulled away with a grandstand finish of 4 and 2 to win 21-14.

Polton suffered a controversial 11-10 defeat from Campise in the semi final of Womens’s Seniors Fours who then lost 20-10 to Dumfries in the final. Upper Coal beat Alloa Co-op 13-13 for the gents seniors fours title.

Meanwhile, Edinburgh hopes of putting up a show in the gents pairs suffered an early knockout blow with Stan Christie and David Scott of Northern crashing out to a 22-9 defeat from Cameron Greer and Bryan Cooper of Bathtgate.

There was also a first-round exit for Scott Brunton and John Ramsay of Slateford, who suffered an 18-7 defeat from Bill Scott and Alastair White of Kelso. Tranent’s Stephen Whitson and John McCrorie lost 21-7 to Kilwinning.

Midlothian’s David Peacock and his older brother Billy made safe progress with a 15-9 win over Dalzell, while, in the Ladies event, Sylvia McAnna and Eleanor Haldane of Juniper Green beat Hawkhead, 21-8.

Gilmerton Private and Uphall Station also progressed but Goldenacre lost to Newmains.

Other results

Gents Fours: Cockenzie & Port Seton 17 Greenfaulds 16, Bonnyrigg 12 Northern (Aberdeen) 9, Linlithgow 9 Eastfiled 16, Colinton 21 Gala Waverley 16. Willowbrae 18 Stanley 16.

Ladies Fours: Colinton 12 Bridge of Earn 15; Glenmavis 16 Markinch 13, Wallyford 7 Ellon 24, Brunstane 10 Bellshill & Mossend 16, East Linton 19 Strathaven 15.