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Short Lawn Match vs Southport

  On Sunday the 30th the short lawn team of Elaine Newman, Mike Patefield, David Lloyd and match captain Sue Pritchard hosted a team from Southport in their latest Federation league match. Having had near continuous rain for the preceding three days, it was doubtful if the match would take place however early on Sunday morning the sun appeared, the lawns dried out and play commenced on time.

In the first session all games went to peg however it was the visitors who took an early lead by 3 games to 1. The second session was a repeat of the first, again with all games going to peg and again the visitors taking three of the four games to put them ahead by 6 games to 2 at lunch. The third session again saw the visitors take three games which now put them in an unassailable position of 9 wins and with only pride left to play for in the final round. It was not to be however and by taking three more games Southport eventually resounding winners on the day by 12 games to 4.

Despite the disappointing result from Westmorland’s point of view, all games were played in the best of spirits and an enjoyable day out was had by all.

Cumbria Tankard Match

  The third and final round of the Cumbria Tankard took place on Thursday the 27th with Sue Pritchard, Elaine Newman, Simon Robins and John Burrows taking on a team from Crake Valley CC. Starting in wet conditions Westmorland took a 2 - 1 lead in the first session by winning a very close doubles game and one of the singles. In the second session Westmorland won three of the four singles games to win the match by 5 games to 2. Who will be the eventual winner of the Cumbria Tankard for 2017 now depends upon the final match between Crake Valley and North Lakes.

Handicap AC Team win against Bury

  On Tuesday 25th July Westmorland entertained Bury at Levens Hall in their fourth scheduled midweek handicap AC league match of the 2017 season. John Shakespeare, John Burrows, David Lloyd and Jim Allcock got off to a flying start in the first session by taking both the doubles and the two singles games, albeit only by leading the doubles game by a single hoop when time ran out, to lead at lunch by 3 games to 0. After lunch the first two games to finish both went to Westmorland thereby clinching the match and leaving only the final two singles games for the visitors to avoid a whitewash. In the end Bury came good by taking the last two games to leave Westmorland victorious by 5 games to 2.

A good result which keeps Westmorland in a strong position for honours once again this season.

Handicap GC Team vs Fylde

  Sunday 23rd saw the handicap GC team of David Snaith, Elaine Newman, Eve Gardner and Mavis Anderton host a Fylde team at Levens Hall. In the morning session Westmorland lost both doubles games but managed to claw their way back to 7 games all by lunch. In the afternoon session Westmorland succeeded in winning all four singles games to make the final score Westmorland 11 Fylde 7. Well done to all involved.

Annual Garden Party

  On Saturday the 22nd the annual garden party was held at the home of Mike and Margaret Hodgson and was attended by 28 Members and guests. On a sunny and warm afternoon Margaret's catering was divine and Mike's games caused the usual contention with a crazy croquet course, tin can alley, mini billiards, Kubb and a quick quiz. Many thanks to Mike and Margaret for most enjoyable which raised £205.05 for the club funds.

Short Lawn Team at Pendle

  On Thursday 13th July the short lawn team travelled to Pendle where they drew their latest league match 8 games all.

Handicap Golf Croquet Team at Chester

  On Sunday the 9th July the handicap golf croquet team travelled to Chester for their next match in the NWFed league. Unfortunately local knowledge and some excellent play resulted in Chester winning by 14 games to 4.

AC Midweek Handicap Team at Bowdon

  On Friday the 30th June John Burrows, David Lloyd, Simon Robins and captain John Shakespeare made the journey south on the M6 to Bowdon for their third NWFed midweek handicap team match of the season. The weather was fine and with the lawns in their usual excellent condition, all looked good for an enjoyable day’s croquet.

The morning session of one doubles and two singles games included some very closely fought contests but in the end Westmorland were 2 games to 1 up at lunch having won both of the singles games and being narrowly beaten in the doubles. After lunch, which was up to the usual high standard, honours in the four singles games were shared at 2 games all leaving Westmorland victorious by 4 games to 3 at the end of play.

A good result to round off a most enjoyable day with particular mention of Simon Robins and David Lloyd for their valuable contributions to this victory.

2017 Festival of Croquet

  The last weekend of June is the date for the annual North West Federation Festival of croquet, held at the Southport and Birkdale Croquet Club. Over 150 players representing all the clubs in the North West Federation were in attendance with teams competing in Advanced AC, handicap AC, short lawn and handicap GC sections. Representing Westmorland in the GC section were Eve Gardner, Mavis Anderton, Frank Sharps, Nancy Gregory and Patricia MacGillivray; in the short lawn section Mike Hodgson, Dave Edwards, Nancy Gregory and Sue Pritchard represented Westmorland and in the AC section it fell to Sue Pritchard, Simon Robins, John Shakespeare and Ivan Wheatley to fly the flag.

The weather forecast for the weekend was non-committal promising cool but dry conditions over the whole weekend, a little disappointing after the glorious weather that we had enjoyed for the previous couple of weeks however spirits were high as the competition got underway. Over the course of the weekend the weather changed almost on the blink of an eye starting cold on the Saturday morning and improving rapidly until the afternoon session benefited from glorious sunshine. Sunday started with drizzle and so it was initially on with the wet weather gear until the rain stopped, the sun came out and once again the day finished in glorious sunshine.

As always the lawns at Southport were in remarkable condition with the south lawns playing fast and true and the north lawns a little slower but none the less able to support some high quality croquet. As the Sunday progressed the results started to mount and as the relative positons of the teams in their respective sections began to consolidate, hopes were high of some form of success as a club. The results were however a closely guarded secret and it wasn’t until the final closing ceremony that all became clear. Fylde were, once again, advanced AC champions, Bowdon had won the short lawn section, Bury had won the handicap golf and yes, Westmorland were pronounced handicap AC champions for 2017 (with thanks to photographer, Tony Thomas).

A great weekend which was enjoyed by all involved.

GC Handicap Team win at Llanfairfechan

  Saturday the 10th June was the third outing of the handicap GC team this season and this time it entailed the long journey to Llanfairfechan in North Wales. David Snaith, Sandra and David Cornes, playing in their first match in the NW league, and captain Dave Edwards made the journey on a wet and cold June day when the rest of the region was inundated by heavy rain. Despite the weather the match got underway on time and by lunch the tally was even at 5 games all. The afternoon session saw the initiative move to the visitors as first they secured the third session by 3 games to 1 and then repeated this achievement in the fourth, again by 3 games to 1. A very good day’s croquet aided by some excellent hospitality and topped off by a victory for Westmorland by 11 games to 7.

Annual Short Lawn Club Tournament

  The annual short lawn club tournament took place on the 4th June, which by coincidence was also National Croquet Day, with six club members taking part in a Swiss style tournament over four rounds. On a day when the weather forecast was for rain, the weather couldn't have been better with bright sunshine and a slight breeze to just keep the temperature at an comfortable level.

Starting with a random draw the games were played to full bisque allowance over a time limit of one and a half hours. In round one all games finished on peg within the allowed time enabling round two to go ahead slightly ahead of schedule. After a short break for lunch, play continued in the afternoon with rounds three and four and right up to the final ball being struck it was neck and neck between three of the competitors and the trophy could have gone to any one. In the end there was a tie for first place on points scored and the tournament was eventually decided on the number of net hoops run. In third place was Nancy with 6 points and +8 net hoops, in second place was Sue with 6 points and +9 net hoops and in first place Elaine with 6 points and +27 net hoops.

A good day's croquet enjoyed by all involved.

Midweek Handicap Team at Southport

  Thursday 1st June was the date of the second outing for the midweek handicap AC team. Travelling to Southport Jim Allcock, Simon Robins, Mike Hodgson and Ivan Wheatley made the journey with hopes high for making it two wins out of two in their 2017 league campaign. Shortly after arriving in Southport the news arrived that one of the Southport team had been taken seriously ill that morning and was on their way to hospital by ambulance and that a second member of the team was with them. Despite offers to rearrange the match for a later date the hosts were confident that they could draft in suitable replacements which they did and the match got underway albeit slightly behind schedule. It was decided that in view of the disrupted start, to play the four singles games in the morning session with a staggered start followed by the doubles and two singles games in the afternoon.

The morning session therefore saw the players paired in matched handicaps in four singles games. The first game to finish was a resounding victory for Westmorland so spirits were high as the remaining three games unfolded. The second game went to Southport leaving the remaining two games to decide the position at the halfway point. Despite valiant efforts both remaining games went in Southport’s favour on time putting the hosts into the lead by 3 games to 1 at lunch. The afternoon session got off to a fine start with the first game to finish, the doubles game, going easily to Westmorland. In the two remaining singles Westmorland were ahead in one but trailing in the second. Needing both singles games to secure a match victory, the air was tense as the clock ticked by and time became the enemy. In the end both singles games went with the play and whilst Westmorland were able to claim two victories out of three games in the afternoon it was not sufficient to overhaul the host’s initial lead leaving Southport victorious by 4 games to 3.

A good day’s croquet marred only by the sad morning’s news and we send our best wishes for a speedy recovery.

GC Handicap Team Win vs Bury CC

  On Sunday the 28th May Eve Gardner, Fiona Armer, Elaine Newman and David Snaith represented the handicap GC team when they hosted a team from Bury at Levens Hall. The sky was clear and bright and the ground firm as the match got underway on time.

Westmorland took an immediate lead by winning both of the opening doubles games with David teaming up with Eve and Fiona with Elaine. Throughout both the second and third sessions Westmorland were able to build on their initial lead taking both sessions by 3 games to 1 to go in to lunch 8 games to 2 ahead. The visitors came back strongly after lunch winning the fourth session by 3 games to 1 leaving them with a theoretical chance of squaring the match if they could take the final four games. Westmorland dug deep however and in winning 2 games in the final session were able to claim the match by a reasonably comfortable margin of 11 games to 7.

This result leaves Westmorland in mid position in their league having lost their opening match away at Culcheth but none-the-less still with all to play for over the remainder of the season. Well done to everyone involved on a significant win.

Previous News Items (please click on the links below)

  Cumbria Tankard Match at Penrith (25 May)

Short Lawn Match vs Bury CC (23 May)

Golf Croquet Tournament (21 May)

Midweek Handicap Win (9 May)

Short Lawn Team vs Fylde (29 April)

Culcheth 9, Westmorland 7 (23 April)