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Anyone got a new set of wheels?

posted 9 Jan 2018, 08:58 by Keith Rippin   [ updated 9 Jan 2018, 09:01 ]

The teams perform a ‘stand where you like ‘ photo before the off.

THE BATTLE for the Welland Silver Salver between our Weekend Friendly fanatics and that ever competitive lot from down the road at Spalding started off by them admitting that they thought we had won it last year so didn’t bother to even look for the shining plate to bring it along to display as a glistening incentive to spur us on. So on with the fight, we had agreed beforehand there is no such thing as a friendly, after two ends we are leading 7-5 oh yes we are! After six ends we are all square 30-30.  At the halfway stage, nine ends,  we are still all square at 45-45. Our best rink at this stage is Ron Blake’s who’s leading 11-3.

So now, without wanting to mention it, this is normally where the effect of our tablets  and whatever, if what luck we have  runs out. After thirteen ends it looks as if our series of bad runs could all be changing, are we on the brink of avoiding that well known slippery slope, we are only three down with the best of the hanging in being provided by the rinks of Jill Goode, playing for us at skip for the first time, and leading 13-9 and Doug Ellis who’s 18-16 up.

Right, here we go, but alas no, we drop four after the next end, and four after the next end, this is getting monotonous. After sixteen ends all that remained to come off was the wheels, and they did. The deficit has increased to 81-99 eighteen down. Our new on fire captain, Maggie Holden, calls to the bar for another gin and tonic to help to stem the flames. But to no avail, another four shots went on the eighteenth for us to finish needing to win the second leg at Spalding by twenty three to wrest the salver from their grasp. So we  shall go there to continue the fight on Sunday February 4th. There will be several coaches laid on for spectators, but to book your seat early to avoid disappointment.

But no rest for the wicked, our nearly the same team, at least some of those who could still stand had to travel to Melton the next day to try and improve on the previous day’s to be forgotten result. In fact, to make sure they got there on time rumour has it that some travelled overnight and slept in their cars. You can’t say that we lack in dedication. We were lucky that one of our most talented and up and coming younger players Helen (just call me hop along) Holroyd made it at all. After returning very early in the morning from one of those types of  parties most of us have forgotten about, she was, she tells us, jumped on out from behind a bush by a bear which grabbed her by her right ankle, threw her up in the air, and ran off back into the bushes. Helen, start taking more water with it please !

So, aided by a large crutch, she limped into the club followed by, we think it was a smiling, could have been a grimacing Paul Bailey who was laden down with her bags and chattels. Anyway, enough of all these excuses we’ve heard them all before, well perhaps not the one about the bear. Nice one Helen, on with the match:

After four ends we are leading 20-14, after five we are leading 26-16, after six 29-21 and on five rinks out of the six. This is unbelievable, and it goes on, after seven it’s 36-25 and after nine ends, the halfway stage we are STILL leading 54-45, keep the crowds back please! By the end of twelve the cracks were beginning to show Melton pulled back to go one ahead. But our fighting Friendly flyers hadn’t  given up, they clawed back to be leading by three shots with all rinks except one finished. We were holding two, Melton needed three to win when the skips went to the mat. Their skip saved his best last three woods for the end and turned it around to grab them a seven and a victory by four shots. Ahhgg, it’s at Sleaford next weekend, can’t wait, watch this space! 

Denis Stapleton  "Friendly?" Reporter