A STUNNING performance away from home kept alive Cheshire’s hopes of making progress in the British Senior County Championship after they beat Merseyside on Sunday.

Bowlers from Castle and Wharton Cons made up the majority of a team that lost by 14 chalks at North Ashton Village Bowling Club, near Wigan.

They returned five winning cards while two others, Glynn Cookson and Daniel Nixon, scored 20.

Castle’s Steve Morrey capped a fine afternoon’s work when he thrashed captain Mike Tunstall 21-7 in the final head-to-head.

There was only nine chalks between the teams following the first four blocks, all taken by the hosts, before a run of wins by Noel Burrows (Sale Excelsior) and Castle trio Dave O’Brien, Mike Yearsley and Jason Cornes earned the visitors a narrow three-point lead.

Merseyside rallied, and defeats for Pete Illidge, Rob Winnington and Paul Dooley settled the outcome before in-form Morrey – who claimed the Rudheath Spring Open title last week – made his mark.

Cheshire prevailed by 27 points on aggregate in the home leg, at Beech House in Levenshulme, to win by 13 overall.

A 230-203 victory there included a 21-13 victory for Phil Davies, of Comberbach, against Danny Barwise.

It leaves Cheshire tied on points with Merseyside in the Section Two standings with one match left, against winless Shropshire, next month.

North Midlands, the defending champions, are favourites to progress though after brushing aside the back-markers in their latest outing.

They conclude their group-stage campaign against Merseyside.


British Senior County Championship

Section Two

Sunday, June 4

At North Ashton Village BC

Merseyside 226-212 Cheshire

Ant Gartside 21-17 Andy Hamman (Castle)

Kevin Kearns 21-18 Tom Vickers (Wharton Cons)

Lee Stringfellow 21-20 Glynn Cookson (Wharton Cons)

Peter Jones 21-20 Daniel Nixon (Wharton Cons)

Tex Allen 14-21 Noel Burrows (Sale Excelsior)

Phil Aspinall 20-21 Dave O’Brien (Castle)

Darren Evans 18-21 Mike Yearsley (Castle)

Jimmy Fagan 20-21 Jason Cornes (Castle)

John Ashcroft 21-8 Pete Illidge (Wharton Cons)

Matty Gartside 21-13 Rob Winnington (Castle)

George Curran 21-11 Paul Dooley (Castle)

Mike Tunstall 7-21 Steve Morrey (Castle)

At Beech House BC, Levenshulme

Cheshire 230-203 Merseyside

Tommy Johnstone (Houldsworth WMC) 21-14 Phil Lee

Dave Phillips (Lloyd Hotel) 17-21 Matt Gilmore

Rob Lawrenson (Houldsworth WMC) 21-19 Chris Barton

Phil Davies (Comberbach) 21-13 Danny Barwise

Jamie Bramley (Lloyd Hotel) 21-17 Robbie Fitzpatrick

Dave Baskerville (Knutsford) 20-21 Ian Sherbrooks

Nathan Brown (Lloyd Hotel) 16-21 Ryan Walters

Ryan Sandham (Lloyd Hotel) 14-21 Cliff Massey

Neil Smith (Houldsworth WMC) 16-21 Anthony Thompson

Ben Phillips (Lloyd Hotel) 21-11 Dave McDermott

Lee Johnstone (Houldsworth WMC) 21-7 Nick Burridge

Cheshire win 442-429 on aggregate