All England Handicap AC Regional Final 1-2 Sep 2018 at Fylde CC
The format was a 5 round Swiss, full bisque base 10 time limit 3 hours.
The Players: 1 Bury CC – Phil Nuttall (Holder); 2 Leven & Crake Valley – Dave Williamson; 3 Bowdon – Adrian Apps; 4 Bowdon – Mike Steer; 5 Chester – Helen Brophy; 6 Chester – John Dawson; 7 Fylde – Alan Morton; 8 Penrith & North Lakes – John Henderson; 9 Pendle & Craven CC – Libby Dixon; 10 Pendle & Craven CC – Garry Wilson
Day 1: A wonderful standard of play from everyone in easy conditions. Our lawns playing very well and beautifully prepared by Philip and Richard in the days leading up to the event. Several spectators and welcome helpers including our President and the NW Fed Chairman saw Helen Brophy take the overnight lead. Followed by a strong group of defending holder Philip, Flyde’s Alan, John H who always shines here at Fylde and Adrian who has risen to handicap 6 in just three years.
No Red Arrows this year but there is a quiz question: “What is the name of the nearest star to us?”
Take a point if you said “The Sun” but take two points if you said “Britney Spears” who switched on the Blackpool Illuminations for us.
Day 2: The gentlemanly conduct and sportsmanship from yesterday continued as the competition intensified on another beautiful warm, still and dry day. With two places in the final up for grabs the places in the final were still quite open and would not be decided until the end of the final round after lunch. The fourth round results had the effect of concertinaing the field to a great extent making the results of almost every game in the final round crucial.
Adrian Apps was playing solid Croquet and achieved his Silver Merit Award. In the final round Adrian, Alan and Phil were favourites. Adrian duplicated his round four Silver Award and was first to finish. But with only two places in the final should they all win their games the tie break rules would decide. He had a nervy hour or so before it became clear he was through to the final. Alan had a nail biting finish. With all four balls for the peg, a seven yard roquet was what he needed and did not get. Phil was last to finish as his opponent made a spirited effort to level the points with a time turn break in front of the pavilion with everyone spectating. A backward take off fell short of 2b and hands were shaken during applause.