Northumberland bowlers win national indoor titles

Herbie Blacklock and Ann Lennie with national mixed pairs trophy.
Herbie Blacklock and Ann Lennie with national mixed pairs trophy.

Two north east bowlers were winners at the English Bowling Federation National Indoor championships at Newark last week.

The event proved to be very successful for Herbie Blacklock, who plays for Burradon BC outdoors and bowls at West Denton indoor.

He returned home after winning both the men’s senior singles and the mixed pairs, with Ann Lennie, of Seaton Burn and West Denton.

The singles title was clinched with a convincing 21-12 victory over D Adams from Nottinghamshire after he came through some very difficult matches in previous rounds to reach the final.

The pairs was no different, and again the pair had to maintain high concentration levels in the rounds leading to the final and overcome very good opposition.

In fact the semi-final match against Russell Robinson and Pauline Marples from Derbyshire was decided on an extra end.

The final turned out to be another close game and went right to the last bowl against Lincolnshire, Blacklock and Lennie were one shot up playing the last end and holding two when the Lincs skip killed the end with the last bowl of the game to make it a tense final.

The end was replayed and again the Northumberland duo lay shot and covered the opposition bowls in the head when this time the drive from the Lincs man missed and the Northumberland pair picked up the title for a second time.

The other county champions representing Northumberland all gave good accounts of themselves.

Dale Bullock of Hirst Park lost to the eventual winner in Russ Pearce of Notts in the four-bowl singles, Aaron Robson of New Delaval and Newsham in the under-25 singles played well in defeat to Greg Allam of Derbyshire, who went on to be runner-up.

Ryan Warnes Hall and Greame Robinson, also of New Delaval and Newsham, lost a close opening pairs game to Cleveland, and the duo alongside Peter Nicholson were beaten by Notts in the rinks.

The mixed rinks trio of Bill and Ann Lennie with Herbie Blacklock lost in the semi-finals to Hunts.

Overall it was a successful championship for the county collecting two of the seven trophies in the men’s finals.

The quality of bowling on show was of the highest standard throughout the week across all competitions and enjoyed by a great backing of supporters from all over the country, this was highlighted by both the men’s and ladies’ World Indoor Champions Ellen Faulkner and Nicky Brett both playing in the championships.