Around the greens

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The Rosebery Cup in West Lothian was first played for in 1882 and last Sunday Kirkliston were winning the Blue Riband club title of the County Association for the 21st time when producing the stronger finish to beat Glenmavis 76-63 on the Bathgate based club’s own green.

Kirkliston are West Lothian’s top performing club in the history of the broad range of WLBA championships however their enviable success in the Rosebery down the years still ranks as second best to the 27 wins achieved by Whitburn.

Glenmavis were hunting their first success in the Rosebery and with a very competitive four-rink formation made a battle of it for 17 of the 21-ends but Kirkliston won the 18th 5-0 to go 13 up and traded on that cushion to wrap up a 76-63 victory.

Wins on the rinks skipped by Raymond Logan, John Aitken and Neil Speirs made it Kirkliston’s day but Glenmavis did make their mark with David Forrest inflicting a narrow defeat on Grant Logan.

The phase scoring shows the first seven ends edged 25-22 by Kirkliston then they followed a 24-24 share of the second with a 27-17 domination of the third.

Logan (Raymond) made the running for Kirkliston having skipped David Brown, Gordon Logan and David Masterton into a 12-1 lead then picking up again from 12-7 to show 18-7 ahead after 12-ends.

The Glenmavis rink of Jack McLaren, George Struthers, Mark Bonnar and Sandy McDougall were on the receiving end and Logan made sure it remained that way and his 25-13 triumph inspired the Kirkliston effort.

Aitken and his rink of Derrick Meikle, Andi Gray and Calum Logan were finding it tough going at 14-10 down after 15-ends to Frank Gillogley, Steven Lawrie, David Lawrie and Andy Forrest.

But Aitken is a player of noted resilience and the former internationalist turned the tables with an 8-1 domination of the remaining six ends to triumph, 18-15.

Speirs also had his hands full at 11-6 down to Tom Whitfield, Alister Deacon, Colin McConaghy and Walter McDougall after 11 ends but zipped to 16 with a run of 1, 1, 3, 1, 4 then skipped Andrew Suddon, Brian McRobbie and Steven Forrest to a 19-17 win.

Meanwhile the rink of David McRobbie, Greg Robinson, Greg Logan and Grant Logan were constantly against the collar and conceding 3 at the last sentenced them to an 18-14 defeat from Hugh Carruthers, Robert McIvor, Davie Ross and David Forrest.

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Deans played host to the finals of the Winter Jack High sponsored WLBA Championships and the winner of the evening major title was Queensferry ace Andrew Dunnett who etched his name on the singles trophy for a second time.

Dunnett also showed the class and determination of a double Masters champion as he staged a spectacular escape to victory from 20-13 down to beat Roy West of Philpstoun, 21-20 in 23-ends.

West had looked to be a sure-fire winner before Dunnett thrilled his support with a grandstand-finishing run of 2, 2, 1, 3.

Queensferry also contested the final of the pairs and triples but lost both to Buchan Park on each occasion.

Kenny Logan is back in the headlines with the gold medal bowler picking up the pace from 8-8 to skip Ian Mackie to a 19-11 win over Raymond Reid and Neil McLean.

Billy Irvine skipped Ian Thorburn and Iain Grant into a handsome 13-3 lead over the Grant clan of Alan, Neil, and Gary then went on to hold off a late challenge to triumph 14-12,

Kirkliston captured the Fours title with Calum Logan skipping Ross Logan, Angus Henderson and David Masterton Jnr into a 15-6 lead then on to a 21-12 victory over Gary Morrison, Tom Neilands, Gordon Morrison and Charlie Sturrock of Polbeth.

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Meanwhile the climax to West Lothian’s campaign in the Hamilton Trophy saw the 2009 champions topple East section leaders West Fife with a commanding 35 shot victory (131-960 at Kirkliston).

So having defeated East Lothian the previous week WL team manager Colin Stein had the satisfaction of having the scalp of the top two qualifiers but the frustration of finishing in third place.

The phase scoring of 42-38 and 39-33 in favour of WL over the first 14-ends shows it was a tough battle for supremacy but the home county produced a 50-25 acceleration on the third.

Calum Logan lost by a single shot so wins on the rinks skipped by Raymond Logan, Thomas Mann, Neil Speirs, John Aitken, and Grant Logan signals a strong team performance from West Lothian.

The rink scores were, R Logan 27 Craig Watson 14; T Mann 25 Jim McGuire 11; N Speirs 22 Rab McFarlane 17; J Aitken 23 Jim Gilruth 18; G Logan 17 Stuart Pagan 15; C Logan 17 Paul Brown 18.

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The British Isles Championships and Home International Series takes place at Sighthill (Edinburgh) from today (Friday) through to Sunday and it is the highlight event of the season for Kirkliston bowler Gordon Logan who is president of the British Isles Bowls Council.

Gordon’s son Grant is in the Scotland team along with WL colleagues Neil Speirs, Gary Smith, Ewan Shearer and Thomas Mann.