The Herefordshire Short Mat Bowling Assoiation held its Singles and Pairs championships alongside each other for the first time in several years, by using the Leominster Indoor Bowling Club, and the day turned out be particularly successful for one county bowler.
The Singles competition saw the 24 entrants contest six round robin groups to secure a quarter final slot.
Two of the group runners-up finished with identical records so a sudden death one end decider was required to decide who took the final place. John Mills of Woolhope held his nerve to pip Llangarron’s Terry Griffiths to that final knockout phase spot. Mills then won his quarter final but was defeated comprehensively by last season’s runner-up, Joe Loveys of Gorsley Chapel, at the semi-final stage. In the other semi-final defending champion Ian Park, of Ross, defeated Woolhope’s Bryan Watkins to set up a rematch of the previous year’s final.
The final saw Joe Loveys avenge that defeat with a 13-6 victory to take his second title in his third consecutive final. Not satisfied with regaining the Singles title, Joe had also been going well in the Pairs championship with John Mills in defence of that title.
From a field of 22 pairs playing in four round robin groups, the semi-finals were formed of each of the group winners. Joe and John topped their group before beating Lea’s Charlotte and Stephen Kite in a semi-final.
The second semi-final proved to be a tight all-Ross affair as Kate Williams and Dave Watkins overcame Ian Roe and Ian Park in an extra end after the game had finished all square.
However, the Ross pair could not prevent Joe and John from retaining their title, losing 9-6 in the final, with Joe winning his second title of a very successful day.