Winning starts for Enders and the Fenmen

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Boston Indoor Bowling Club’s evening leagues have begun a new campaign, six months after the closure of the club caused by the coronavirus pandemic and one month after the club’s facilities re-opened for pleasure bowling and day leagues.

Division One got underway with two sides, Eastenders and Holland Fen, scoring maximum points from their first matches.

Eastenders were runner’s up in March when the previous season came to a premature close and must fancy their chances of being champions this time, given that the previous champions, Carlton Road, are not taking part.

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Matt Whyers’ rink for Eastenders were always in control of their match against IBC and held off a late come back to win 17-13.

The other match was tighter, with IBC trailing by only one shot going into the final end, before a four was scored to seal the victory for Eastenders, 15-10, for Chris Gill’s team.

Holland Fen won convincingly against Parthians, 39-13. Initially down, Richard Vinter skipped his team to a 19 shot win.

The score on the other rink was tied after six ends, then Holland Fen pulled away to win 15-8.

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The surprise of the first round came in the third match when newly-promoted Strollers beat Invaders, who were placed third in Division One last season, 4-2.

Each rink produced a convincing win for either Strollers or Invaders, but Strollers just managed to outscore their opponents overall to take the extra two points.

Two of the opening matches in Division Two were close-run affairs, both ending with 4-2 score lines.

Royal Mail prevailed against Pilgrims and Breakaways were victorious against Cosmos.

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Pilgrims were promoted to Division Two, while Royal Mail themselves only just missed out on promotion to Division One.

For Pilgrims, Ted Bourne, R. Pepperdine and Neil Harrison were always in control, although Royal Mail, skipped by S.Todd, were coming back strongly over the last five ends.

On the other rink, the score was 4-4 after five ends, then Keith Sharp skipped Royal Mail to a comfortable win, and the extra points for total shots scored.

Breakaways dropped down to Division Two after last season and had a close match against Cosmos.

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D. Butwright skipped Breakaways to victory on one rink by 16-8, but S. Sperring won for Cosmos on the other by 14-9, with Breakaways just taking the extra points.

The third match between Central and Dynamics should have been a close affair, in that only one point separated them in the table last season.

But, in the end, Central prevailed and won 36-13 overall, taking all six points.

Fred Epton skipped his rink to a 15-11 win where the teams were closely matched throughout. On the other rink, Central won all bar two ends and finished up 21-2 ahead.

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The closest match in Division Three was between Patriarchs, just relegated from Division Two, and Shipmates, who had finished the 2019-2020 season in third position, the final score being 4-2 to Shipmates.

Apart from a late rally from Patriarchs, Ted Vere’s team were in complete control on one rink and won 17-4, while Patriarchs won the second rink 16-7 and were always ahead.

Vikings finished last season as runners-up in Division Three and were pitted against last year’s bottom team, Phantoms, and showed good form to take all six points.

The score was tied at 10-10 on one rink after seven ends, before J. Millership guided Vikings home to win 24-11.

Vikings were always ahead on the other rink.

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However, Phantoms were blooding some new bowlers, who will only gain from the experience of playing in this league.

Vectors beat U3 by 6-0, with Colin Heppenstall winning 16-5 on one rink and M. Brown taking the other rink 17-7, a convincing start to the season.

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