CASTLE were rewarded for a stirring finish when they reached the Brunner Cup last four at the expense of Houldsworth.

Paul Mackie and Jason Cornes both made it to 21 in the final four, while Paul Dooley was edged out to 20 by Lee Johnstone – a runner-up at the Cheshire Senior Merit last month.

The Northwich side trailed by four chalks during a close encounter at Wilmslow Bowling Club before they went onto the green.

In the end, they won by 17.

A slow start saw Steve Curbishley, who won the Guardian Cup the previous weekend, and Rob Winnington both suffered defeats before Adi Faulkner and Andy Hamman took the next two blocks.

When Houldsworth’s Tommy Johnstone beat Kevin Duncalf (21-12), and Steve Morrey responded by besting Kevin Wainwright, the teams were separated by a single point at halfway.

They both returned six winning cards.

Wharton Cons were altogether more comfortable when they dispatched Manor Road at Subscription Bowling Club in Runcorn.

The Winsford outfit, runners-up in last season’s edition, recovered from a blip of Daniel Nixon losing the opening head-to-head with Matt Gilmore to take complete control.

They took seven of the next eight blocks, while captain Mark Winnington scored 20 in the one that went against them, to ensure they could cruise to the semi-finals stage.

Nicola Boulton, buoyed by a brilliant victory at the British Ladies’ Senior Individual Merit seven days earlier, was one of three bowlers to win to single figures.

Mark Cookson (21-9) and Owen Cookson (21-8) were the others.

They can now prepare for a rerun of last season’s final when they take on holders Tixall, conquerors of Sale Excelsior, in the last four.


Cheshire County Bowling Association

Brunner Cup

Saturday, July 20


Houldsworth WMC 197-214 Castle (at Wilmslow BC)

Hoylake Central 177-223 Packhorse (at Wharton Cons)

Manor Road 169-234 Wharton Cons (at Subscription BC)

Sale Excelsior 189-218 Tixall (at Winsford Cons)

Scores (selected games involving Mid-Cheshire Bowling Association teams)

Houldsworth WMC 197-214 Castle

Carl Armitage 21-14 Steve Curbishley

Martin Walker 21-17 Rob Winnington

Neil Smith 9-21 Adrian Faulkner

Lee Dale 12-21 Andy Hamman

Tommy Johnstone 21-12 Kevin Duncalf

Kevin Wainwright 17-21 Steve Morrey

Damian Morrison 21-7 Ian Howell

Jack Holland 12-21 Matty Hamman

Larry Wells 10-21 Paul Mackie

Steve Wooding 11-21 Jason Cornes

Ged Smedley 21-18 Dave O'Brien

Lee Johnstone 21-20 Paul Dooley

Manor Road 169-234 Wharton Cons

Matt Gilmore 21-11 Daniel Nixon

Lee Henderson 12-21 Glynn Cookson

Jamie Isaac 11-21 Graham Donnelly

Joe Edwards 9-21 Nicola Boulton

Paul Bainbridge 14-21 Pete Illidge

Alan Bainbridge 18-21 Martin Kettle

Dave Gilmore 21-20 Mark Winnington

Ken Howard 9-21 Mark Cookson

Peter Hammond 8-21 Owen Cookson

Anthony Thompson 21-14 Ashley Blackburn

Barry Smith 10-21 Simon Cookson

Ken Stocker 15-21 Gareth Evans



Saturday, August 17

Packhorse v Castle

Tixall v Wharton Cons