With Manager supremo Tony Boughton taking over the managerial duties of the WPH Grade 5 team for the playoff, Boughton's Bunch were to open our post-sectional account against a crack outfit from Gladesville. The Gladesville side had been very competitive in a section which featured Carlingford, Wentworthville Leagues and Pennant Hills so the boys were expecting a challenge on our hands.
Conditions at Carlingford Bowling Club were significantly different to those we are used to at West Pennant Hills. The greens at Carlingford were faster than we were used to, running at approximately 16 seconds with a strong cross wind. Luckily conditions like this proved to be a great equaliser among the teams.
The Kevin Tuckerman Kings once again featured Norm Jackson, Brian Joyce, David Wilson and Kevin Tuckerman. The boys didn't fire in the morning game, struggling with the weight and line of the green. On the last end needing two shots to tie and three to win, the Kings were holding four shots. With his last bowl the opposition skip drove at the head and achieved a six shot turn around. The Kings lost 18-22.
The Hoffman Hornets welcomed Lightening Les Watkins into their team as lead, along with regulars Don 'Sofa' Couch, Dallas Palm and Kevin Hoffman. The team played well, shooting to an early lead only to be pegged back by a determined Gladesville side. Les Watkins was leading in fine form in this game bowling with his new bowling arm. (Which leads me into this week's bowls competition - name Les's bowling arm. Email your suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org). However, the boys fell just short of victory with the Hoffman Hornets losing 17-19.
The Rod Foster Rockets put in a stellar performance with Gary Tyrrell, Darrin Ede, Michael 'the Shade' Schwarcz and Rod Foster forming the side which proved to be the backbone of the team's victory in the morning game. Bolting from the gates early and never looking back, the Rockets secured West Pennant Hills' spot in the grand final to be held that afternoon with a truly sensational 28:16 victory. One particularly memorable end saw a super opening bowl from Gary Tyrrell securing the shot only to be taken by the opposing lead. This back and forth continued all through the team until Rod Foster secured the shot with a great skip's bowl.
Achieving a win by six on the big board 63-57, the boys from WPH headed for the afternoon's grand final against the Hills District (1)s.
After suffering through a very short lunch break and a schnitzel which had been deep fried to within an inch of its life, Boughton's Bunch headed out on to the Show Green at Carlingford. (Mention should be made of the other final occurring at Carlingford. Congratulations to the Merrylands No.1 Pennant side who defeated Wentworthville Leagues).
In summation of the conditions, the author notes that they may be considered less than favourable. Conversely, Lucy Cormack of the Sydney Morning Herald stated in her article "Wild winter weather batters greater Sydney";
Wind speeds reached 95 kilometres an hour at Sydney Airport and a similar speed at Fort Denison in Sydney Harbour, while gusts exceeded 80 km/h elsewhere in the Sydney Basin.
The author would concede that it was so cold it would make an Inuit shiver. The game continued into the darkness of the early evening with the lights being required.
Once again the Kevin Tuckerman Kings didn't fire. In what may be described as a pattern, Norm, Brian, David and Kevin did their best work on the last end, picking up four shots to lose 17-19.
The Hoffman Hornets improved on their performance in the first game with Les, Don, Dallas and Kevin producing an outstanding gutsy win 23-18 over the Hills.
Going back to back, the Rod Foster Rockets stormed home with a win in their second game. Gary, Darrin, Michael and Rod played out of their minds to record a 23-10 win.
The final big board score was 63-47 in favour of West Pennant Hills. The author believes he speaks for all members of our side in saying that while we knew we could win, up against quality opposition from Gladesville and the Hills we recognised this was a tall order. Yet through consistent bowling and a desire to win, the 5s won the club's second flag in our 45 year history. Special mention should be made of Dallas Palm and Michael Schwarcz who now hold a 4s and 5s Zone 10 Champions' badge.
The 5s are the 2014 Zone 10 No. 5 Pennant Champions and will now represent Zone 10 in the State Playoffs to be held in Tamworth (West Tamworth BC and South Tamworth BC are our hosts) on 9th to 11th August. For more information on the State Playoffs and to see which other clubs around NSW made it through to the final 16, visit www.rnswba.org.au or click here. Our section in the playoffs features the following;
|Section 3||Played at: West Tamworth|
|A||Zone 13 - Taren Point|
|B||Zone 4 - Parkes|
|C||Zone 10 - West Pennant Hills|
|D||Zone 5 - Canowindra|
As many readers will note, the author is known to be from the conservative rather than the more progressive side of politics. However, in the words of Australia's 24th Prime Minister, the Hon. P.J. Keating; (and this is for you Michael!)
This is the sweetest victory of all. This is a victory for the true believers; the people who, in difficult times, have kept the faith.
The author thanks all those who have made the journey fun and enjoyable. To Tamworth...WE RIDE!