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Tim Russell wins Wrest Park GC Championship

[<<] [>>] by Richard Keighley at Wrest Park
5th June 2023 (GC - Championships)

"June was bustin' out all over" as the field of 12 players gathered at Wrest Park in bright and breezy conditions to contest this Championship event. Manager, Richard Keighley divided the players into 2 blocks of 6 with a requirement to play best of 19 point games on an all-play-all basis.

In Block A, Trophy holder Nick Archer (Watford) won all his 5 games in impressive style but Jayne Stevens (Northampton) took him to the 19th hoop in their game. Ian Burridge (Nottingham) also qualified for the knockout with 4 wins as did Tim Crowdy (Llandovery) with 3 wins and Jayne herself with 2 wins.

Over in Block 2, Tim Russell (Roehampton) and Les Heard (Wrest Park) had to work hard to achieve 3 wins apiece but the block winner with 4 wins was a very consistent Tony Butcher (Southchurch). The fourth qualifier was Glynis Davies (Northampton) who pipped Ross Bagni (Leighton-Linslade) with an impressive Barnes -Wallis jump shot to run the golden hoop in their game.

Day 2 began with the Quarter Finals on a best of 3x 13 point games basis. Nick beat Glynis (7-5,7-5), and Les beat Tim Crowdy (7-6,7-3). Tim Russell was taken to a deciding game by Ian (7-3, 4-7, 7-4) and Jayne found her best form to spring a surprise by beating Tony (7-2,7-5).

Sadly, a recurring arm injury prevented Jayne from completing her semi-final against Tim. His opponent in the Final was Les Heard, who beat Nick in the other closely contested match. (7-6,3-7,7-6) In the deciding game, Nick led 5-2 before Les won a long clearance battle to claim the 10th hoop and went on to level the scores at 6-6. From a distance, Les put his first ball through the back of the 13th hoop to sit prettily in front of it, only for Nick to follow suit with an exact-same shot but which did not block the hoop for Les.

The Final between Tim and Les was played in warm sunshine before attentive spectators. Tim just had the edge to win 7-6,7-6. He kindly thanked Wrest Park members for staging an enjoyable tournament in well-prepared conditions and fine weather. Prizes were also presented to Tony Butcher for winning the Shield and to Mike Hills (Northampton), the Plate winner.

Finishing Order: 1. Tim Russell 2. Les Heard 3. Nick Archer 4, Jayne Stevens.


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