THE favourites to win this season’s Brunner Cup progressed to the last 16 with a minimum of fuss on Saturday.

Wharton Cons, who finished as runners-up last season, began their latest bid to win the Cheshire County Bowling Association’s biggest team prize with a comfortable win against West Kirby Victoria.

It secures for the Winsford club a head-to-head with Lloyd Hotel, one of the most successful clubs in the competition’s history with six final wins.

Castle avoided an upset when they saw off Mid-Cheshire Bowling Association rivals Hazel Pear, a side that went on to lift the Norman Cup following a first-round exit in 2018.

Comberbach eased through at the expense of Mobberley Victory Hall, while Frodsham Red Lion were too strong for Nursery.

However there were defeats for Davenham, Meadowbank, Wharton Rec and Winnington – who lost by 14 chalks on aggregate in their clash with Hoylake Central & Melrose.

Rudheath were impressive victors against Lostock Graylams, dropping only five chalks, to clinch a fascinating third-round date with Tixall.

The defending champions laid a marker for 2019 when they posted 250 during an emphatic victory against Oxton Cons.

However they will be conscious the men from Middlewich Road eliminated them from the 2016 edition – coincidentally when they were holders.

The Brunner Cup resumes next month.


Cheshire County Bowling Association 

Brunner Cup 

Saturday, May 11 

First Round 

Castle 228-171 Hazel Pear (at Winsford Cons) 

Comberbach 232-172 Mobberley Victory Hall (at Lyme Green) 

Frodsham Red Lion 234-165 Nursery (at Victory Hall, Mobberley) 

Heswall RBL 242-132 Wharton Rec (at Grapes, Runcorn) 

Hop Pole 191-238 Pack Horse (at Knutsford BC) 

Houldsworth WMC 229-192 Meadowbank (at Mere) 

Manor Road 239-138 Davenham (at Norton Arms) 

Metro Sports 180-215 Lloyd Hotel (at Cheadle Cons) 

Poynton Sports 238-167 Parkside (at Linden Club) 

Rudheath 247-153 Lostock Graylams (at Crowton Village Hall) 

Sale Excelsior 246-159 Swettenham (at Comberbach) 

Tixall 250-151 Oxton Cons (at Helsby No.2) 

Wharton Cons 236-177 West Kirby Victoria (at Woodland Hotel) 

Winnington Park 208-222 Hoylake Central & Melrose (at Waverton Institute) 

Byes: LMRCA and Plough TRC