Shouldham A team were pipped at the post in the contest for last prize of the Norfolk Bowls Association’s season – the Hansells Cup.
They lost 67-54 to Shotford (Harleston) in a thrilling toe-to-toe final, having earlier beaten Freethorpe B by a convincing 74-39 margin in the semi-finals. Shotford beat Shipdham in the other semi.
Captain Peter Setchell commented: “It is the second time in three years we have made the finals day. This time we made the final itself – an improvement on our last appearance. It was a great result for a small village club with just 15 players to pick from.”
Sponsors Hansells Solicitors and Financial Advisers were represented by Jennifer George, who congratulated all four teams.
“As the last piece of Association silverware to be decided at the end of the summer season, the Hansells Cup always bring out the best in the teams who have earned the right to contest finals day,” she said. “Yet again we have witnessed some enthralling bowls, played in a competitive yet wonderfully friendly spirit.”
Norfolk Bowls Association Men’s Section President Richard Church reflected on a memorable occasion: “The finals day has been a great success. Shotford came out on top in a very hard-fought final.”
He thanked league secretary Tony Dunton for organising the event, the hosts and particularly Hansells Solicitors and Financial Advisers for their continued support of bowls in Norfolk.
Hansells Bowls Cup semi-final scores: Shouldham A beat Freethorpe B by 35 shots. Scores (Freethorpe names first) – C Brister, R Carr, T Beck, S Simpson 15; M Martin, J Savage, C Jones, R Steele 35. S Bullard, P Church, J Harris, T Roberts 10; A Howlett, M Hampton, R Saxon, J Sadler 23. P Cooper, W McMartin, M Crow, K Taylor 14; A Thorley, P Setchell, J Rusted, K Camp 16. Totals 39-74.
Final: Shotford beat Shouldham A by 13 shots. Scores (Shotford names first) – A Gostling, K Rickard, D Webster, D Ashfield 19; M Martin, J Savage, C Jones, R Steele 21. J Macinowski, C Catchpole, T Smith, S Ayers 27; A Howlett, M Hampton, R Saxon, J Sadler 14. R Oakes, T Thacker, E Frost, R Brinded 4; A Thorley, P Setchell, J Rusted, K Camp 19. Totals 67-54.