Pat and John v Alison and Geoff

Geoff set the opening pace with shot, John second till Alison just edged him to give herself and Geoff the lead at 2-0. Then in the second end John had shot at eighteen inches till Alison firstly ducked fractionally closer, then another to one foot for two. Pat, who had been bowling a good line but not finding the length, put in a great shot with her last wood which was right on the money except that it found Geoff’s short wood in the way. Now 4-0 to Alison and Geoff.

John held two shots in the third, at ten and seventeen inches, Pat then finding her length to make it four but Alison brought it back to two, the match now 4-2. On a thirty-two yard jack in the fourth John held shot at one yard with a ring of woods around five feet away. On a measure it was Pat second by a whisker to square the match at 4-4.

Both leads failed to set a legal jack in the fifth and it was set at the default thirty yards. Geoff bowled to seven inches, Pat to eight. Alison’s final wood took a faint wick off Pat’s wood in second, the closer of the two contending woods, pushing it a couple of inches further away, and that wick prevented it moving Geoff’s shot wood. Alison ran through a little too far, the end stayed with Geoff and they led 5-4. Geoff again took shot in the sixth, at ten inches, and he held on through some decent woods from Pat for the lead to be extended to 6-4.

The seventh end saw John take shot, with Alison finding a similar length for a measure. Pat wicked off John for shot, nudging him into clear second so that the match was again square at 6-6 with two ends to play. In the eighth Geoff took shot till John wicked off him to take shot himself – and had he not taken the wick he would have been much closer to the jack. Pat then took over shot herself so she and John held two, but Alison nudged Pat away and she and Geoff now held shot, just the one. Pat’s last wood had a great line but was a yard short. It meant a 7-6 lead for Alison and Geoff as they played the last regulation end.

Geoff put the final jack in the ditch and John set it at twenty-eight yards, the shortest of the day. John had two shots short of the jack, Geoff another just beyond the jack, the three in a measure for shot. Pat’s first wood ran into Geoff’s short wood, promoting it, but the promoted wood then promoted John so that he clearly held shot. Pat’s second wood then took out the wood of Geoff’s that had been shot, then second, but now out of the count and Pat and John held three as Alison played her final wood. It barely missed John’s wood, lying second, when any contact could easily have wicked it onto the jack, and it ran through, not far but far enough to lie outside the count. Holding three, Pat did not need to play her final wood - she and John were in the next round at 9-7.

All four had played well, and Alison and Geoff had never been behind in the match till the finish. Even then, that merest touch could have given them the win. A fabulous match, with all four players having their moments and it really would have been a match to grace a final, but congratulations to Pat and John as they wait to see who they will play next.

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