Ian Lines won the Southport September Advanced Tournament to win the Sandiford Salver, beating Lionel Tibble in the final +4tp, -17tp, +26.
There was no play at all at Southport on Sunday as there was very heavy overnight rain, and when competitors turned up at 9.30am the lawns were at least 20% under water, with no prospect of improvement with rain forecast all day. I think its the first time I've had a washout day at Southport in 15 years!
Terry Foster, Chairman of Southport, presented the Consolation Event prize to Robert Dodds, who had played well on Saturday to get to 3/4.
John Haslam, who was game down in a semi-final, conceded the bo3 to Ian Lines, and Ian and Lionel Tibble then transferred to lawn 1 at Bowdon to play the final. The final was quite good, with just a few errors and some good shooting by Lionel in the first two games, although the wet Bowdon lawns were pretty easy, even with the hoops set to 1/32nd.
In game 1, Lionel hit a long standard tice on 4th turn, but then took off the lawn (Bowdon is a wee bit quicker than Southport). Ian went to 4-back with a DS, Lionel missed the long lift, Ian stuck in hoop 2, Lionel hit in 14 yards and went to 4 back. Ian missed the long lift, Lionel's straight rover peel went wrong (peelee stuck in jaws with SB 1cm from it). Lionel put the SB safe, but Ian still finished +4tp.
In game 2, Ian hit on 4th turn and went to 4 back with a DS. Lionel hit and finished in two turns +17tp.
In game 3, Ian went to hoop 5 on 5th turn with a leave (difficult precision pick up). Lionel missed and Ian went to 4 back with a DS. Lionel missed the short lift, Ian was on a standard tp but took off into a hoop before hoop 5 (huge pull on a thin take off) so had a scatter leave. Lionel missed the 12 yarder. Ian went to peg with one peel and a tight horizontal DS. Lionel missed and Ian finished +26.
So the cunning managerial ploy of shifting the final to a lawn where Lionel has never been, and I've played a few hundred games, worked out :-).
Many thanks to Southport for the excellent catering on Saturday, and for the lawns there which are as good as they've ever been. It was also great to see a few new faces, including Tom Crawford from Perth, Australia. Thank you also to the Bowdon Short team who kindly provided lunch for the Finalists at Bowdon on Sunday.