Spectacular Bristol Cup victory for Temuka Bowling Club
The Temuka Bowling Club has made a spectacular start to the season and could now be rated the top performing bowling club in South Canterbury.
The highlight has been the men winning the Bristol Cup, symbol of interclub supremacy, for just the fourth time in the 108-year history of the trophy.
Temuka led throughout the round-robin phase of the competition, earning the right to host the playoffs. In the semifinal it beat Awamoa (Oamaru) three games to one, and the scoreline was the same in the final against Geraldine.
Temuka last won the Bristol Cup in the 1983-84 season, and before that in 1979-80 and in 1925-26.
Heading into the Christmas break, Temuka was also going well in the other interclub competitions - 1st equal in the men’s division 2, first in the Friday pairs, and second equal in the popular Wednesday triples competition.
While the women did not win either of the two pre-Christmas interclub competitions they finished in the top four for a creditable outcome.
Temuka has also figured strongly in South Canterbury championship events.
Sam Morton, Marshall Stoddart and Travis Cook won the centre triples, Morton and Stoddart then combined with Greg Valentine and Dave Wood to win the centre fours, and Merv Davey came through in a high-quality field to make the final of the singles where he was pipped by “young gun” Tom Taiaroa.
The win in the centre fours was freakish, with the Temuka team trailing 14-9 going into the last end. Outstanding bowls by Morton and Stoddart saw Temuka score five shots and force an extra end.
Their Geraldine opponents held the upper hand until the last bowl of the game when Morton pushed a team-mate’s bowl to sit beside the jack and take the win. For the 30-year-old Morton it was his fifth South Canterbury title, earning a gold star.
In the women’s centre triples, Cathy Richards, Shirley Whyte and Noeleen Milne lost in the final after winning the event last season.
The performances of the Temuka players have also been recognised by the South Canterbury selectors with 12 players making up more than a quarter of the men’s and women’s senior and development teams.
And those teams have been performing. In the most recent quadrangular tournament, South Canterbury beat Canterbury, North Otago and Canterbury Country in both development grades and the women’s, while the men finished level with Canterbury but were beaten on differential. However, in the singles, pairs, triples and fours games against Canterbury, the South Canterbury men won 3-1.