After some excellent matches en route to the final there is always a danger that the final itself will be a damp squib. This was emphatically not the case in this year’s Couples Final.

The first end was something of a loosener, with two beautiful line and length woods at the end. First, David was on a perfect line but met Chris’ short wood and promoted it to shot at no more than two inches. Marian’s final wood was again bound for the jack but met David’s wood, promoting it – but to three inches away! One shot to Chris and Marian.

Bella then held two shots in end two, with Marian coming in for a measure for second. David trumped them all with his last wood for shot – that measure then went in favour of Bella, and three shots put Bella and David into the lead at 3-1.

Chris started the third end strongly and probably held three, before Marian moved the jack and made sure that it was three of Chris’ plus her own for four. David took out one of Chris’ scoring woods but Marian replaced it with her own. David’s last missed them all and Marian and Chris were now 5-3 ahead.

The fourth end was nip and tuck. Chris was shot, even after Bella nicked the jack, and Marian came in for second. David took Marian’s wood out and took shot himself. Marian was on perfect line and length for shot except that she ran into Chris’ wood. Enough contact to move it, but it rocked back into its original position and they were second and third. Until David’s final wood just caught the jack and moved it away from his own holding wood – towards Bella’s wood and another of his own. Two up, to bring the scores level at 5-5.

The fifth, set by Bella, was one of several full length jacks and saw some impressive woods. Bella put two woods less than a foot away, and Chris came all the way behind them for a measure for second. David was lying fourth wood at no more than fifteen inches before Marian’ final wood, a backhand, rolled in to Bella’s two, sprung one but could not wrest the single shot from Bella, so that Bella and David now led 6-5.

Another full length jack in end six saw Bella take shot then Chris move her out to take shot himself. David trumped Chris to lie six inches from the jack before Marian moved the jack towards Chris again to give them two. David promoted Bella’s wood but without affecting the head, so two shots put Marian and Chris back into the lead at 7-6. Anybody’s game.

Until Chris sat on the jack in end seven and Marian rolled in second and third woods. David’s attempts to clear the head were unsuccessful and suddenly the three shots had opened up a four shot lead at 10-6. In end eight Bella held shot but their position looked terminal when David took her wood out so that Chris and Marian held two. But with his final wood he moved Chris out of the head to take shot himself and the lead was cut by one to 10-7.

Bella and David needed a big win on the last and Bella held the three shots they needed until Marian’s second wood eased into shot. With David’s last unable to change the head, Marian did not need to bowl her final wood – but she did! No change though, and at 11-7 the trophy went to Marian and Chris, in an exciting match in which Bell and David played their full part.

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