Norfolk get in winning form for cup bid

Norfolk completed their Middleton Cup preparations when they entertained Essex in the Eastern Counties League at Norfolk Bowling Club and came away with a victory by 127 shots to 107, taking 14 of the 22 points at stake.

Norfolk's victory was built around the rink of John Colcombe, Chris Gaul, Danny Noble and Peter Boldero who raced into a 20-0 lead at five ends before returning an emphatic winning scorecard of 43-9.

Boldero's rink enabled Norfolk to take a 26 shot lead at five ends, a lead that Essex were unable to recover from for the rest of the match and in the end Norfolk finished comfortable winners. Norfolk's other rink win came from the executive rink skipped by John George.

Rink scores: Mark Elliott, Richard Summers, Roger Guy, Andy Siely 16-23; John Ottaway, Mick Brown, Rob Parker, Bernie Perrett 19-24; Gary Mallett, Michael Hunter, Chris Willgress, Mark Turner 16-20; John Colcombe, Chris Gaul, Danny Noble, Peter Boldero 43-9; George Tubby, Danny Page, Paul Shackcloth, Philip Day 18-13; Derek Talbot, Peter Bird, George Hunter, John George 15-18.

Attention now switches to the Middleton Cup where once again Norfolk play Essex at Westcliff-on-Sea on Saturday (2pm). With several senior players having recently confirmed their retirement from the Middleton Cup scene, manager Brian Taylor has selected a new-look team featuring a mix of young and experienced bowlers. There are Middleton Cup debuts for Rob Parker (Freethorpe), Danny Noble (Nth Walsham), John Colcombe (Acle), Chris Gaul (Gissing) and John Hunter (RG Carter).

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Full team: Gary Mallett, Steffan Adcock, John Colcombe, Rob Parker, John Hunter, Chris Gaul, Danny Noble, Mark Riches, Roger Guy, Wayne Willgress, Philip Barr, Peter Boldero, Sam King, John Ottaway, George Tubby, Jake Willgress, Mick Brown, Michael Hunter, Paul Shackcloth, Bernie Perrett, Andy Siely, Jamie Chestney, Brian Taylor, Mark Turner. Reserves: Max Harrison, Danny Page, Chris Willgress, Neil Moulton.

• There was disappointment in both the Junior and Senior National Two Fours. In the Juniors, Norfolk went down to Essex in Havering while the Seniors fell to Northamptonshire at neutral West Row in Suffolk.

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Juniors: Max Harrison, James Segolo, Richard Summers, Jake Willgress 15-29; John Tufts, Sam King, Matthew Flatman, Wayne Willgress 10-25.

Seniors: George Tubby, Mark Riches, Paul Shackcloth, Wayne Willgress 16-19; John Ottaway, Steffan Adcock, Mark Turner, Philip Barr 12-22.

• Norfolk's first match in the Eastern Counties U30's League is against Suffolk at Wymondham Dell on Sunday, June 12.

Norfolk: Liam Stevenson, Tom Segolo, Matthew Flatman, Richard Summers, Max Harrison, James Segolo, Mark Flatman, Jake Willgress, John Tufts, Alistair Stevenson, Sam King, Wayne Willgress. Reserves: Daniel Seabourne and Daniel Noble.

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