DAVE Hamlett senior accepts the ‘favourites’ tag but insists Wharton Cons will not underestimate Metro Sports when they meet in the Brunner Cup quarter-finals at Mere on Saturday.

The three-times winners from Winsford reached the last eight courtesy of a stunning single-chalk win against Houldsworth, while Mobberley Victory Hall conceded the tie that allowed Metro to progress.

“When we won last time the talk on the day was whoever got through will go all the way to the final,” said the Wharton skipper.

“You don’t take anything for granted in this game.

“The lads fought for every chalk against Houldsworth and the one chalk counted.

"It could be as close again, because there’s no weak teams left in the competition.

“On paper we must start as slight favourites but favourites don’t always come out on top.

“We don’t know too much about them, but they can’t be pushovers to get to this stage of the competition.

“Mobberley conceded against them in the last round so we don’t really have an idea what sort of line-up they will put out on the day.

“That does make it harder for us. They’ll know what our line-up was last time.”

Metro will face a determined Cons outfit on the opposite side of the draw to strong rivals Lloyd Hotel and Tixall, who also meet this weekend.

With Wharton a distance behind Mid-Cheshire Bowling Association Premier Division leaders Castle, emphasis is being placed on the Brunner Cup.

“I would say it is number one objective for us now,” said Hamlett.

“But we’ll not stop chasing Castle. We’ll not give up until it is impossible. We’ve come from behind before.”

Half a dozen current Wharton players won the Brunner Cup for the club against King and Queen in 2012, but there are new stars on the books keen to mark their mark in the competition.

“We’d be over the moon to win it,” said Hamlett.

“There’s six or seven players who played in the last final.

“The others who have come in sort of look up to them and say if they can do it we can do it, and they do.

“It improves their game when they’re playing alongside players like Glynn Cookson and Tom Vickers.

“It keeps you on a steady course.”

Tomorrow's tie starts at 11am.

Both teams have agreed to an earlier start to avoid a clash with England's quarter-finals encounter with Sweden in the World Cup.


Cheshire County Bowling Association

Brunner Cup

Saturday, July 7


Crosstown v Nursery (at Norley BC) (from 11.30am)

Lloyd Hotel v Tixall (at Crewe PO) (from 2.30pm)

Metro Sports v Wharton Cons (at Mere BC) (from 11am)

Victoria v West Kirby Victoria (at Middlewich RBL) (from 11am)