The dream is sadly over for another year as Tenby were knocked out of the Carruthers Shield at the last 16 stage by Havelock Park from Llanelli. Having beaten Milford away on the Wednesday night the green looked a similar surface and so it was. With this in mind the Tenby boys, buoyed by the sun finally sneaking out to play were full of confidence as they stepped on the green. When all finally did get on the green!
Rink one saw the Guymer twins facing Robbie Byrne. This was a tough encounter during the early stages, some good play by both Luke's keeping the Tenby side in the game. In the second half however the boys rallied and built up a comfortable lead. In fact going into the last end 9 shots up and holding 2 the boys looked like securing a decent win. More importantly as the fact that as the Carruthers is a ‘shots only’ competition as opposed to points for rinks, the two slender shots they were holding would have brought the Tenby team back to all-square. But with his last wood Robbie Byrne somehow managed to send his bowl down the tightest line of the afternoon and the bowl seemed to hold its line to the jack and pull it through for 4 shots, a turn around of six shots at such a crucial stage.
Rink two saw John Roberts taking on former Texaco pair’s winner Ritchie Hughes. This too was a tight affair. End after end Paul Diment or john would make shot only to see Ritchie spoil the party with some tremendous bowls. The game itself was a tight affair with there never being more than 3 or 4 shots in it either way. Sadly however in the last two ends, as the rink was the last on the green they dropped a three and a four in the last two ends. The score line however did not give a true reflection of the game. Tenby lost by 10 in the end by as I say, when chasing the game in the last two ends, dropping a three and a four is sometimes inevitable.
Sadly the damage was done on rink three on Saturday afternoon. A combination of short bowls, a loss of concentration in the middle half and sublime skipping by Howard Griffiths of Havelock was enough to send Peter Day and his men back to changing rooms having lost only their second game of the season. The rink didn’t get off to a great start, the front end still in the corner shop when the speeches finished, and a further 6 ends past before all the combined food offerings were digested, by which stage Peter was 9-0 down. However a rally brought them back into the game but sadly that 9-11 shot difference that built up over the first few ends remained in place for the rest of the afternoon. Try and the boys might, everything they threw at the Havelock rink was swiped away with a better more telling bowl by the opposition who all played well to a man. Sadly a few ends in the middle when there was a collective minor loss of concentration didn’t help and Peter found himself counts down on consecutive ends. Again the boys dug deep, Pat and Joseph really coming to the fore with touchers galore, only to see the opposition take the game from them. Every time we seemed to be close we’d miss, but with them it was always a hit! So after a valiant effort from that rink the deficit that was there at the start remained at the end.
Rink four saw the Captains face each other as Wigan’s warriors took on the family rink of Gwynn and Mark Williams. Again a tremendous display of leading was provided by Dai Spencer. Since reverting back to his usual position of lead Dai’s been on his best form since he led Tenby to the Carruthers in 2009. Ably support by Gerald and with some telling bowls by Webbie and Wigan this rink was always in front from the off. They could never however shake off the Havelock rink and every time a precious lead was built up a sloppy end followed and a three or four was dropped. In the second half there was more of the same with the Tenby boys pushing hard but a superb effort by the Havelock captain and skip who produced some fine shots to keep his team in the game and stop the rink from potentially winning the game for the team. In the end a decent final last end by the Havelock front end and that four on the twins rink lead to the side chasing the game a little with ends running out. A dropped 2 on the last end didn’t help the team score and it was scant consolation that the rink won by two.
So all told a decent effort by the boys in what can be seen as a re-building year. The youngsters will have gained huge experience from the campaign and the whole side will come back better and stronger next year.