Tatura’s division two and division five, despite finishing on top of the ladder in their respective divisions at season’s end, found their premiership aspirations were all to no avail.
Both sides lost their second semi-finals a week ago and then completed their poor finals form with losses and elimination in their preliminary finals on Saturday at Kyabram.
Division two, in its preliminary final against Shepparton Golf, failed to win a rink and lost overall by 19 shots, 89-108.
What had looked to be for much of the home pennant season an opportunity for a division two premiership and promotion into the Goulburn Valley division one competition quickly edisappeared in the finals, for a side that obviously wasn’t quite up to the challenge.
Similarly, division five was clearly the standout side in the home and away season, but it also failed to make it to the grand final and lost narrowly to Shepparton RSL by eight shots, 69-77.
Disappointing results on the day and a demoralising end to the season for Tatura Bowls Club members and supporters.
Barry Parker played a former Tatura bowls member, still a Tatura resident and skipper with Shepparton Golf, John Tucker, with Parker losing by two shots, 26-28.
Parker was in all sorts of trouble when, after 15 ends, his rink was behind by 17 shots, 6-23.
Having won only four ends to this stage, Parker’s rink then won five ends in a row to bring the margin to only three shots, 20-23, on the 20th end.
Conceding just a two on the 21st end and then scoring on the next three ends, and as Parker would say ‘‘may the Lord be praised’’, his rink had hit the front, 26-25.
A three to Tucker on the last end and Shepparton Golf had regained the lead when it mattered most, with a final score of 28-26.
Peter LeSueur had a tight game against Wayne Gribble and on the 13th end was up by the slim margin of one shot, 15-14.
At this point, the wheels fell of LeSueur’s rink and by the 18th end, Gribble had gained 13 shots to nil and was well up, 15-27.
A resurgence by LeSueur’s rink on the penultimate end with a four to LeSueur, levelled the scores at 28 each.
Unfortunately, a three to Gribble and another Tatura rink just failed to deliver a win.
John Attwood played John Crozier and on the 16th end, despite Attwood’s rink having won only six ends, the scores were level 15 each.
Attwood was constantly under pressure and was putting in some quality saving bowls, but eventually his team went down by just four shots, 19-23.
For any aspiring bowler wishing to witness excellent draw bowling, one would not need to go much further afield than observing John Attwood in action.
Wally Sinclair was up against ‘‘Baldy’’ Grant and all seemed to be in Tatura’s favour with an early break, six to zip.
At the halfway mark, Sinclair was behind by just one shot, 11-12. However, unfortunately, his team went walkabout and the Grant demolition began.
By the 23rd end, Sinclair’s team had gained just two shots, but had conceded 14 shots to 13-26 behind. The remaining two ends belonged to Sinclair, but the horse had already bolted and Sinclair’s group was well beaten by 10 shots, 16-26.
Results: A. Barry, D. Warburton, P. Boyd, B. Parker lost to J. Tucker 26-28; D. Best, B. LeSueur, J. Schroen, P. LeSueur lost to W. Gribble 28-31; P. Cohen, P. Hussey, F. Attwood, J. Attwood lost to J. Crozier 19-23; D. Messer, J. Crilly, P. Wallis, W Sinclair lost to B. Grant 16-26.
They played Shepparton RSL and the overall scoreboard used during the match for those keenly watching spectators indicated a close match in contention.
No huge margin had defined the clear winner during the day, but with only four or five ends to go, Tatura had looked as if it had a winning break.
Each Tatura rink then simultaneously lost between it two threes and a five, and suddenly the game was in the balance.
Shepparton RSL came home the stronger and dashed Tatura’s expectations of premiership glory and promotion into division four.
Nick Tziros was the only winning skipper for the day in both divisions.
Tziros made a slow start against Graeme Ball and was down 4-9 after eight ends. Tziros’ team dominated the next eight ends to be in front 19-12.
The RSL competitors did cultivate a fightback and by the 23rd end, RSL’s Ball was only down by three shots, 24-21.
With three each over the last two ends, the three-shot winning margin to Tziros remained, with the end result 27-24.
Geoff Pieper played John Thomas and, despite being level on four occasions, had appeared to have the game in his keeping when leading 18-13 on the 19th end.
Failing to contain his opposition over the concluding stages saw Thomas take control of the game and convincingly take over the scoring to run out with a five-shot win, 20-25.
Freda Clement was marginally behind Ron Thorp in ends 12 to 13, but conceding larger numbers on losing ends (five threes and one four), proved to be extremely costly and Clement eventually lost by six shots, 22-28.
Results: P. Smith, A. Knee, K. Webber, N. Tziros defeated G. Ball 27-24; K. Tee, J. Hussey, C. Morritt, G. Pieper lost to T. Thomas 20-25; R. Henderson, D. Deane, D. Westin, F. Clement lost to R. Thorp 22-28.
To Stu Mactier, Roma and the many other supporters at the Kyabram venue, we are sorry we couldn’t deliver on the day.
However, we need to remain positive and remind ourselves there will always be next year.
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