IN PICTURES: Bushmills and District Triples bowls finals

Ballywatt Hall was the venue for the “nine ender” Bushmills and District Triples competition, umpired by David Culbertson.

In the preliminaries and first rounds there were a lot of close ends and games, with the hosts’ triple going through in its side of the draw to play against the other side of the draw finalist Billy.

After the tea interval, it was Billy who got the first two ends to go three shots up, Ballywatt then settled in taking the next three, drawing around the head in the fifth to go 4-3 up. Billy in the next end had drawn the shot, lying on the jack and Ballywatt had put two bowls either side about a couple of inches from the jack.

This would have put them level but the Billy skip had the last bowl and had only one thing on his agenda, to draw up on his backhand deadweight, dead centre and dead on the jack without moving it, this was THE shot of the match and competition and edged them back into the lead.

Ballywatt replied, taking the next end, to even the score again and then squeezed a two in the next close eighth end, putting them 7-5 in front going into the last end. Billy then drew a counting two in the last and their second lying shot got a tap to put it out but it rolled over just once and still counted to give a tied end. And so in the tenth end of a nine end competition, Ballywatt drew down a potential match winning bowl on the right hand side on the centreline jack and had a bowl counting and protecting it on the left front and another counting and covering behind, slightly to the right.

The Billy skip came down the right, on his backhand to cannon the touching jack out of the head over to the left corner of the ditch where counting bowls were mixed. The skip then went on to claim the last end’s winning shot and the Triples title, winning 2024 Rose Bowl Trophy presented by host Ballywatt’s representative H Stewart.

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