Cambridgeshire beat Suffolk to trophy

CARPET BOWLS: The 2002 Six Counties Championship event was hosted by Bedfordshire and played off at the Putteridge Centre in Luton.Suffolk went into this competition as the holders, with hopes of retaining the title for another year.

CARPET BOWLS

THE 2002 Six Counties Championship event was hosted by Bedfordshire and played off at the Putteridge Centre in Luton.

Suffolk went into this competition as the holders, with hopes of retaining the title for another year. As the league winners for the 2001/2002 season Suffolk were in with a good chance of pulling it off.

The day started with Suffolk being presented with the League Shield and individual awards for the players. Following the presentation it was down to the main business of the day.

In the first session Suffolk played three rinks against Bedfordshire, who are normally one of the teams they would expect to take the points from. On this occasion Bedfordshire found the mats better than Suffolk to take four of the six points available.

The second session proved to be better as Suffolk took all six points from the next three rinks, also versus Bedfordshire.

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In the third session the opponents were Norfolk. It was another disaster as Suffolk again were held to just two points from a possible eight.

Session four was a mixed one, with two games against Norfolk and two against Hertfordshire. The two against Norfolk went to Suffolk and one of the two against Hertfordshire also went to Suffolk giving Suffolk six points.

The fifth session was four rinks of Suffolk versus Hertfordshire, this time honours were even as both teams scored four points.

The next session was against Cambridgeshire, which was going to be difficult. As it happened Suffolk came good, taking five of the eight points.

At this stage in the competition Suffolk had pulled back the deficit from the early rounds and were in second place – five points behind Cambridgeshire.

There was still a chance Suffolk could make it to the top, if they were able to continue winning and Cambridgeshire dropped a few games.

Session seven was another mixed one, with two rinks against Essex and two against Cambridgeshire.

The two Cambridgeshire games went to Suffolk and also one of the Essex games, giving Suffolk a further six points.

The eighth and final session was to be against Essex. Suffolk needed to win all four games, while Cambridgeshire had to lose two, for Suffolk to retain the trophy. It was going to be a hard task but not beyond the Suffolk squad of this season.

The four rinks fought all the way, coming back from a deficit in one case to win three games and only losing the fourth with the last wood of the game.

Cambridgeshire managed to hold on and only lost one of their last games to be declared the winners for 2002 with Suffolk as runners-up.

Final Positions: Cambridgeshire 40 pts, Suffolk 37, Norfolk 35, Essex 27, Hertfordshire 25, Bedfordshire 20.

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