King’s Lynn hold their nerve to prevail against Hingham Rectory in Hansells Cup

Geoff Bonnick, captain of the victorious King'�s Lynn BC team, receives the Hansells Cup from Nick S

Geoff Bonnick, captain of the victorious King'�s Lynn BC team, receives the Hansells Cup from Nick Sutherland, partner at Hansells Solicitors and Financial Advisers. Picture: Newsmakers - Credit: Archant

The final piece of domestic silverware in the men's section of the Norfolk Bowls Association went West as King's Lynn lifted the Hansells Cup after a final which went down to the wire.

The opening skirmishes of the final saw King's Lynn score strongly against Hingham Rectory on a superb Wymondham Dell Bowls Club green and they looked to be strolling to success. But their never-say-die Central Zone opponents fought back strongly, steadily reducing the deficit in the later stages of an absorbing contest.

The tension ratcheted up as the first two rinks of finalists cancelled each other out, leaving everything resting on the outcome of the final pairing. In a nail-biting finale, Richard Bunton's block emerged victorious by just two shots against Barry Moody's four.

In the morning, the Hansells Cup semi-finals saw Hingham Rectory beat Gorleston 61-44, while King's Lynn, who were beaten semi-finalists two years ago, had another close encounter, winning by one shot on the final bowl of the last end against Scole & District.

Geoff Bonnick captain of West Zone Division Two champions King's Lynn, who lost in the semi-finals of the Hansells Cup two years ago, was proud of the way his team played – and full of praise for both sets of opponents.

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'In both matches the results went down to the final bowl. We won our semi-final by one shot and the final by two shots – but each of them could easily have gone either way. It shows how closely matched the teams were. We just had that little bit of extra luck,' he said.

'All credit to Hingham Rectory for the way they came back at us. My rink was 24-10 up at one stage, but Hingham changed their tactics and after that we never won any of the last eight ends as they pulled it back to 24-22.

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'Even if we had lost, we would have come away knowing we had had a brilliant day. You could not ask for a better setting than Wymondham Dell, with its superb green, fantastic floral displays and wonderful hospitality.'

Presenting the trophy to winning team captain Bonnick, Hansells partner Nick Sutherland congratulated all four teams on a wonderful day's play that demonstrated exemplary skill and sportsmanship.

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