Midlothian ladies lift Scottish Cup

Midlothian captain, Shona Johnstone
Midlothian captain, Shona Johnstone
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Midlothian IBC ladies produced a magnificent team performance to capture the Scottish Cup in a hard-fought final against Auchinleck at Dundee.

The final scoreline was 71-63 with the winning contributions from the rinks skipped by Stacey Laidlaw and Jeanette Conlan more than covering the losses of Sandra McLeish and Shona Johnstone.

Peels were called at 17-17 after five ends then, from 27-26 after eight ends, a three-end run of 6-2, 4-1, 3-2 pushed Midlothian ahead 40-31. However, their opponents stayed in the picture with a 6-1 reply on end 12 and they carded a 6-2 five ends later to lead 54-53.

The lead changed hands on end 18 with Midlothian scoring 5-3 to cross 58-57 and they clinched the Cup with a 5-1, 4-1, 4-4 finish.

Midlothian were edged out 22-24 over the first seven ends but answered that pressure with a 25-18 capture of the second then put up a strong resistance to celebrate a 24-21 success on the third.

“Auchinleck kept us under constant pressure all the way but a strong mixture of skill and spirit saw us deliver a brilliant team performance and a memorable first time title triumph,” said team captain Shona Johnstone.

Laidlaw – recently crowned British Isles Junior Singles and Fours champion – set the foundation for success by skipping Susan Liddle, Elian Young and Kelly McDougall to a 20-11 win over H Kay.

The highlight of their game was a run that accelerated them from 10-5 up after nine ends to 20-6 after 17.

Conlan – Scotland’s most capped player – turned on the style when the pressure on her was at its highest, serving up a majestic 3, 1, 1, 3 finish to skip Dorothy Millar, Alicia Wilson and Anne Rutherford to a 21-14 win over Jean Sykes.

McLeish dropped a single at the last to be piped 18-17 by J Williamson but just prior to that had skipped Sandra Muir, Norma Shillinglaw and Grace McGregor to a valuable run of 2, 2, 2.

Johnstone slipped from 9-10 to 9-20, and suffered a 20-13 defeat. She fulfilled her team captain role by skipping May Brownlee, Jeanette McVicar and Gaynor Duncan to an inspired 2, 1, 1 finish when the match chips were really down.