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Three Croquet England Medals earned at Crake Valley

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pictureThree CqE Medals earned at Crake Valley

by Dacid Cornes at Crake Valley Croquet Club
21st June (Club News)

What a week it has been at Crake Valley. Torrential rain and flash floods versus our great new drainage system and (on both days) Giles Pepperell working the "Bowdry Sponge machine" - who would win? Somehow, the Club managed to fulfill all 3 tournaments despite the most challenging of weather. The 3 winners progressing to National Finals and each receiving a CqE Medal for their achievements.

The worst of the weather was on Saturday 15th when only 4 rounds of matches were completed in the GC "A level" 2-day tournament. A couple of games had to be moved, mid game, from the worst affected areas to Lawn 1, which remained playable all weekend. Sunday morning saw the Blocks completed and the decision made to play the knockout as a best of 19 point games rather than risk best of 3.

4 qualifiers from each block (in order), Block A = Tony McCann (Backworth), Mike Bilton (Gainsborough), Ted Flexman (Ripon Spa) and Paul Galley (Crake Valley). Block B = Tom Grievson (Chester), David Cornes (Crake Valley), Christine Wood (Tyneside) and Julie Tremble (Guildford). In an unusual twist, the 4 quarter final winners came from the same block. The semi finals saw Tom beat Christine (10-8) and David overcome Julie (10-5). Spectators were treated a some superb play by both finalists with David just seeing Tom off by 10 hoops to 7, thus gaining revenge from their block game the day before. David will now play in the National Final in Sidmouth and will receive a CqE "Gold" medal. Jane Pringle won the Plate and Ted Flexman the Shield. Shortly after the presentations, the rain returned justifying the slightly curtailed format needed to complete the tournament.

On the Friday, Crake Valley "B level" was held. Progressing from Block A was Sarah Clements (Chester - 4 wins) and Robert Strover (Bishop Monkton - 3 wins plus a better hoop difference over Marcia Henderson). In Block B, Phil Tremble was solid throughout with 5 wins and joined by Robert Mumford (Bishop Monkton - 3 wins). A close semi final saw Robert M beat Sarah 7-6 and Phil beat Robert S 7-4. In the Final Phil was too strong for Robert taking the win 10-4 and earning a place at East Dorset along with a CqE "Silver" medal.

The first tournament was the GC "C level" with a full field of 12 players. Block A saw Chris Williamson (Penrith) and John Bowes (Crake Valley) progress with 5 and 4 wins respectively. In the other Block David Carpenter (Ben Rhydigg) and Ray Hodgson (Crake Valley) both won 4 out of 5.

Two close semi finals followed with Chris edging Ray out on the 13th hoop and John beating David 7-5. In an exciting final John won through 10-9 and, therefore, qualifies for the National Final at Watford and will receive a CqE Bronze Medal.

Photos show the presentations and Giles at work on the Bowdry - what a machine (they both are!!)


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