National glory as county youngsters clinch crown
Northamptonshire were crowned champions as the under-25 men won the White Rose Trophy at the National Championships in Leamington.
In the semi-finals, the county team beat Gloucestershire 43-37.
Connor Cinato’s rink were beaten by their opponents who, led by Nathan Kitchen, were really on their game.
The last few ends for the county rinks were very good after they found themselves two shots down overall after 16 ends had been played.
The last five ends for each rink proved to be very productive as Northants collected 14 shots to six conceded to turn the game in their favour.
Rink scores (Gloucestershire skips only)
Rink one: Adam Pitfield, Kieran Rollings, Will Walker, David Walker 24 Ben Coldrick 12.
Rink two: Danny Walker, Sam Gamble, Nathan Betts, Connor Cinato 19 Nathan Kitchen 25.
That set up a final clash with Kent and both county rinks were successful in an excellent performance as they clinched the title with a 48-28 victory.
Kent held a 21-17 lead after 10 ends before both Northants rinks collected a count of four to open up a 27-25 advantage.
And from then on, Kent were not in the match with all the county men playing their best bowls.
They allowed their opponents just three more shots and collected 21 of their own to wrap up an emphatic success.
Rink scores (Kent skips only)
Rink one: Danny Walker, Sam Gamble, Nathan Betts, Connor Cinato 27 Andrew Rodger 11.
Rink two: Adam Pitfield, Kieran Rollings, Will Walker, David Walker 21 Dex Weyand 17.
Northants women suffered semi-final heartbreak in the Amy Rosebowl competition, a double rink event for those aged under 31 years old.
The county opened up with a 36-21 victory over Devon Debutants and then saw off Sussex by a 30-24 scoreline in the second round.
That set up a quarter-final against Somerset and Northants produced a terrific performance as they wrapped up a 33-18 success.
Rebecca Wigfield’s rink, which included Abby Woodward, Louise Haladij and Billie Swift triumphed 19-7 while the line-up of Emma Muir, Lois Woodward, Victoria Stevenson and Katie Smith won 14-11.
In the semi-final against Cornwall, Smith’s rink were beaten 18-11 but Wigfield’s team were 14-9 up going into the last end and needed three shots to win or two to force an extra end.
The Cornwall skip was two shots down when she delivered her final bowl but she got the second shot to secure a narrow overall 27-26 victory.