Pirates & Crusaders continue to dominate the division with both teams recording emphatic wins on Thursday. Pirates are 4 points clear of their stable mates after a 31 pin away win at Oddsquad, hitting the highest score recorded on the Sexey’s Arms alley this season, with Danny Palfrey leading the way with 69 and James Higgins with 65. Bruce Warboys was best for the home team with 2 spares in his 63.
Meanwhile Crusaders cruised to a 47 pin home win over Crown after tying the first hand they had spares from George Scott, Shaun Haggett, Nick Haggett and Brian Scott in a second hand of 92 that pulled 29 pins. Nick Haggett going on the hit 2 further spares in his total of 83, as did George Scott in his 77.
With Crown losing at Crusaders, Farmer Boys closed the gap on the third place by the narrowest of wins at near rivals Woolavington Boys. After being 14 pins down with 2 hands to go they pulled 12 back on the penultimate hand and then spares by Paul Mantelow and top scorer Justin Melhuish meant that anchorman Chris Puddy needed 8 for the victory, which he just managed.
At the bottom of the table, 3 of the bottom 4 all achieved wins, Crown Jewels and Polden Bears at home to Stop-Outs and Barstewards respectively and Somerset Vaults at Wheatsheaf Boys. Stop-Outs never recovered from dropping 17 pins on the second hand at Crown Jewels, who had floppers from Julian Porter and Steve Bartram to thank for their highest hand of the night. Robbie Stephenson also had a flopper as he top scored for the away team.
Polden Bears had Tony Saunders in tremendous form as he hit 3 spares in his 79 and was ably assisted by John Williams with 73 as they comfortably beat Barstewards by 31 pins.
Somerset Vaults left it late at Wheatsheaf Boys, taking a 1 pin lead after the 6th hand thanks to spares from Paul Bamsey, Jim Vearncombe and John Hill and then increasing it to 5 pins on the last hand and claiming 3 valuable points. This was despite a fine 79 from Jason Parsons of the home team, which was 18 better than his nearest team mate.
The only team in the bottom 4 not to win was bottom side Wasters as they dropped 5 pins on the last hand at home to Spitfires after being 3 pins up. Spitfire’s captain and anchorman Paul Tregale won the game for his side with a last gasp 15 spare to snatch the victory.
Nomads consolidated their position at the top of the division after a thumping 85 pin victory at Haymakers with top scorer Chris Coggins finishing with 2 spares in his 70. Poor Viv Bennett, for the home team, had a night to forget as he only managed 29 from his 7 hands.
Foxes & Ferrets remain 2 points behind the leaders as they also had a comfortable away win, beating Rofugees by 59 pins at Red Tile. Trevor Saunders with 67 and Les Macriner with 66 led the way for the victors, whilst Peter Anderson also had a poor night for the home team as he only managed 34.
Huntspill Boys fell a point behind Foxes & Ferrets despite a 23 pin home win over Landlords Rejects. Aaron Stokes top scored for the victors with 67, but Daryl Underhill of Landlords Rejects was top scorer in the match with 3 spares in his 69.
Three Cees remain rooted at the bottom of the division after their 12th defeat of the season, this week by 63 pins at Ruggerites, who remain in 4th place. Stuart Dyer hit 67 for the victors, which was 15 more than the joint top scorers for the away team, Nick Hansford and Martin Flook.
Odds & Sods recorded only their 2nd away win of the season as they led from start to finish at Herdsmen, eventually winning by 24 pins thanks to a terrific 67 from Dave Fry.
Dave Tucker finished with 2 spares for Swannies as they tried to rescue their game at White Horse against Wanderers, but it was too little too late as the home team triumphed by 5 pins in the end.
Polden Turkeys got back to winning ways with a 19 pin away win at Cross Your Hart thanks to Mike Cox’s 78, which included 3 consecutive spares. Steve Watts started with 2 spares for the home team, but could not keep the pace up and eventually finished with 68, still the top score for his team.