MARK Winnington, last year’s winner, has an opportunity to repeat what only one bowler has achieved previously – and that’s to retain the Joe Robinson Trophy.

The Wharton Cons member came through a qualifier on Thursday, registering wins against David Jones (Comberbach) and 2015 champion Barry Ellis (Frodsham Red Lion), to secure a spot in the final.

However it is no easy task to win the Mid-Cheshire Bowling Association’s singles knockout for veterans.

Gordon Yates, a former first-team captain at Castle, defended the title in 1994 after claiming it for the first time 12 months earlier when he beat then league president Alf Harrison (Comberbach) in the final at Beech Tree.

Nobody since has managed to do the same.

Two other previous winners, Terry Bebbington of Wharton Cons and Delamere’s Gerald Merry, are also through to the last eight of the competition’s latest edition.

The former edged Frank Nicholas, a two-time victor, along the way.

Merry’s passage was a smoother one, despatching Tom Davies (Rudheath) and John Brooker (Frodsham Red Lion).

A line-up for the final, scheduled for July at Winnington Park Recreation Club, is completed by Terry Allman (Wharton Cons), David Bradburne (Delamere), Geoff Dale (Owley Wood), John Pickering (Rudheath) and Graham Powell (Lostock Graylams).

Dale squeezed past Lester Bebbington, who lifted the trophy in 2001 while a member at Ring O’Bells, by the odd chalk.

There was frustration too for Phil Scott (Rudheath), who bowed out following a 21-19 reverse against Bradburne after he had earlier held his nerve to eliminate Tony Malisch, of Lostock Graylams, by one shot.


Mid-Cheshire Bowling Association

Joe Robinson Veterans' Trophy

First round

David Bradburne (Del) 21-19 Dennis Brewin (Castle); John Brooker (FRL) 21-11 Alan Bannister (Kel); Geoff Dale (OW) 21-14 Peter Bellis (Cro); Tom Davies (Rud) 11-21 Gerald Merry (Del); Barry Ellis (FRL) 21-14 Adrian Robinson (Com); Paul Farrington (Midd) 13-21 Lester Bebbington (WhC); Eddie Gowan (Dav) 13-21 Terry Bebbington (WhC); Norman Greatbanks (Hazel Pear) 19-21 Terry Allman (WhC); Roy Knop (Castle) w/o Peter Kelly (WhC); Frank Nicholas (Kel) w/o Alan Lowe (Rud); Graham Powell (LoG) 21-17 John Spruce (Del); Phil Scott (Rud) 21-20 Tony Malisch (LoG); Brian Southern (Rud) conceded to Peter Walton (WhC); Brian Taylor (Com) conceded to John Pickering (Rud); Mark Winnington (WhC) 21-9 David Jones (Com)

Second round

Allman 21-16 Walton; Lester Bebbington 20-21 Dale; Bradburne 21-19 Scott; Brooker 12-21 Merry; Nicholas 16-21 Terry Bebbington; Powell 21-7 Knop; Winnington 21-18 Ellis. Bye: Pickering