Almeria had high expectations of resting the Inter-Provincial trophy from the firm grasp of Malaga in what is considered the most prestigious Bowls event In Andalucia.
Played at Indalo Bowls Club over the weekend of the 1st & 2nd Octo-ber it was the first time Almeria had played host for a few years, (Due mainly to the intervention of Covid.) The trophy is played for twice yearly, with Almeria suffering a heavy defeat earlier in the year when playing the away tie.
But that defeat and the “Brexit” imposed 90 days visiting restrictions brought about not only a change in the Management Committee but a change in the playing personnel with some familiar faces no longer being available.
The Saturday morning matches gave Almeria hope following some terrific bowling by all concerned. It was honours even all round as the Men’s & Women’s rinks matches were both drawn 1-1 as was the Singles matches.
Special mention must be made of terrific ladies match featuring Almeria’s Sylvia Pritchard, a match of nigh -on marathon proportions with Sylvia just losing out 20-21 after 34 ends of play. What a match! What a great effort.!
Onto the afternoon matches and it was Almeria’s women who led the way in the pairs and triples matches, with an overall match result of 3-1 . Alas the men’s result was the exact opposite going down 1-3. So at the half way stage and with 2 points for a win, it was 8 wins apiece and 16 points each.
Sunday morning and everyone was in a buoyant mood. Almeria were feeling quietly confident but they knew Malaga would not go down without a fight and so it proved. The women showed the way winning both the pairs matches, and 1 of the triple matches. Unfortunately the men lost both pairs and triples matches. Nevertheless Almeria were just 1 game down and there was all to play for going into the final session. However it was a similar story for the afternoon session.
The women won both the rinks matches and the singles matches. In total the women won 12 out of the 16 matches they played., with a shot difference of +67 With such a dominant performance and so many highlights it is hard to single out individuals, but a “big shout out” for Linda Latham, still relatively new to the game but as a lead we have found a real gem.
Then again there was Jenny Rowling, debuting as skip in the team games with the headline ‘played 4, won 3, and similar stats for Lyn Burgess, who played and limped throughout the weekend wearing a knee support.
Post match and the ladies team captain Izzy McKay was in a jubilant mood and quite rightly very proud of her ‘gals’ as she put it. As we all are. It’s really is hard to emphasise just how well the ladies played against a Malaga side that boast’s both quality and experience in depth., however Izzy’s “gals “ proved they are a match for any one.
WELL DONE LADIES.ON A FANTASTIC TEAM EFFORT.
The men’s team however just could not find the winning formula and lost all 8 of the days matches leaving Malaga with a winning match total of 17 games to 15. ( or 34 points to 30). As some say “ Close but no cigar”. It had been a tense weekend , played in a fabulous Spirit by all concerned.
So Malaga keep possession of the trophy, but hopefully not for too long as we look forward to the spring of 2023 when we do it all over again and when friendships and rivalries will be renewed