Wrest Park beat Bristol 4-3 in the Mary Rose
played at Wrest Park on Sunday 2 June 2019
George Collin (1.5) & John Bevington (1) lost to Martin Leach (.5) & Wayne Wiseman (.5) -2(t)
Nick Evans (1.5) lost to Eric Soakell (3) -24
Tim Brewer (2.5) beat Richard Williamson (3.5) +20
George Collin lost to Martin Leach -6
John Bevington beat Wayne Wiseman +5(t)
Nick Evans beat Richard Williamson +5
Tim Brewer beat Eric Soakell +16
The match got under way at 10am, Bristol having travelled over from an overnight stay in Hitchin. The weather was fine and warm but breezy. Three and a half hour time limits were agreed. The lawns were parched and it was sometimes hard to judge the pace. Lawn 3, on which the doubles and top two singles were played, is less even than the others causing vertical take-offs and unexpected swerves to either side. This led to some cautious play as it was important to retain the innings.
In the doubles John got to 4-back, followed by Martin, but play got bogged down with George only making hoop 1 after nearly two hours. It remained quite close till near the end when a late surge saw Bristol take the win. The singles were divided so Bristol were 2-1 up at lunch, taken at around 2pm and provided by Bryan Harral, Wrest Park's non-playing captain.
Tim then won again, and with Nick beating Richard and Martin winning against George the match stood at three all. John was behind but had made up ground when he played the wrong ball in a take-off after making 2-back, handing Wayne all the balls. Wayne, with one ball on 4-back, accepted the gift and had established a five point lead when he made to run 2-back with control off John's backward ball but just failed to get through. John hit and went from hoop 4 to the peg (with time being called during the turn) and pegged out, leaving partner on the east boundary and Wayne wired across the peg. Wayne lifted the 2-back ball and missed.