A weekend of contrasting weather: having begun with Friday dull and calm throughout, Saturday dawned cloudless with a light breeze adding a distinct chill when in the shade. Then came Sunday, beginning unpromisingly in windy drizzle from which state things got steadily worse - continuous rain by 10:30, heavy by 12:00 flooding the lawns and rendering them unplayable. Although the plate was concluded, the championship final had to be abandoned half way through game 2 and no more play was possible after lunch. The finalists intend to complete their best-of-5 contest when next they meet. It is to be hoped that this uncharacteristic manifestation of Eastbourne weather will not deter those (Luc Berthouze, Carole Jackson, Jonathan Lamb, Sam Murray, Craig Oakley and Nigel Polhill) who entered for the first time, from returning next year.
In the first round of the knock out Nigel Polhill came from behind to beat Keith Aiton in their third game. With Nigel on hoops 1 and 2, and 5 peels of his sextuple completed, Keith jawsed the peelee in rover and failed to jump it with his own ball. Nigel peeled the jawsed ball in picking up his break and subsequently pegged it out to win by 2, only to fall victim to Lionel Tibble in straight games in the next round. In the semi-final Lionel was then dispatched in equally emphatic style by David Maugham, his only comfort being instrumental in bringing David's hitherto unbroken string of 6 TPs to an end. Meanwhile Gavin Carter and Jamie Burch engaged in a battle royal in the other semi, a match of rather few errors, from which Gavin emerged the victor. In view of the Sunday weather the third place play-off was agreed as a best-of-3 one-ball and was won by Lionel before the rain became really heavy.
In the plate Keith Aiton impressed with his signature precision play and sextuple attempts, three of which were successful. However Martin French, improving as the event progressed, overcame Keith with a triple in the rain to win the interestingly shaped (octagonal cross-section) Sussex Union Cup. Also in the rain, Nigel Polhill secured a win against Mark Ormerod (returning to this event for the first time since 1985!) to bring them both into tied second position with Keith. Close behind them was Compton local Craig Oakley, fresh from his Treasurer's Tankard win a fortnight earlier. Hilary and Tim Smith's catering kept spirits high, hot chicken stew for Sunday lunch being particularly welcome, even if it and the tea urn did fog up the clubhouse windows.
+12tpo -5 +16tp
+20 -26tp -26tp +25tp +17tp
|Gavin Carter leads David Maugham 1-0 ( to be completed later)|
+14 -25tp +2
+18tp +22tp +16
-24tp +12 +19tp
Swiss consolation event - for the Sussex Union Cup Winner:
Martin French 5 wins from 7 games (71%)
5/9 (55%)Keith Aiton, Mark Ormerod, Nigel Polhill
5/10 (50%) Craig Oakley 2/5 (40%) Gabrielle Higgins, Roger Wood
3/8 (37%) Jonathan Lamb, Sam Murray 2/6 (33%) Carole Jackson
1/8 (12%) Luc Berthouze
0/6 David Hopkins
Peeling prize: Keith Aiton (1 TP, 3 SXPs)