Norfolk Ladies back in the race for title after victory over Hertfordshire

Jayne Roylance helped Norfolk to victory over Hertfordshire at Wymondham Dell. Picture: Archant

Jayne Roylance helped Norfolk to victory over Hertfordshire at Wymondham Dell. Picture: Archant - Credit: Archant

Norfolk Ladies bounced back from defeat to Cambridgeshire to secure victory over Hertfordshire at Wymondham Dell BC, winning on five out of the six rinks.

With only Jenny Kirby and Brenda Whitehead's block returning a winning scorecard the week previously, a change was made to the team with Great Plumbstead's Amy Barker making her debut at number three to Jayne Roylance.

The rinks skipped by Jayne Roylance, Christine Webb and Jackie Devitt got off to a particularly good start, the scores at five ends 6-1, 11-2 and 9-4 respectively in Norfolk's favour. And it was one way traffic for most of the day. Roylance's final score against a Hertfordshire side skipped by Rachel Tremlett, a junior England international, 23-8 with Devitt and Webb also seeing big final margins at 26-9 and 24-12. With these scores on the board, the final aggregate was never really in doubt but the more successful rink wins, the better for the team's progress in the overall competition.

Skips Brenda Whitehead and Sue Curtis had a real battle on their hands. While always seemingly on top the County Arts rink of Marlene Hooper, Pauline Tomlinson, Mary Watson and Sue Curtis faltered in the middle of the game, as the opposition took the lead 15-13 but they did well to battle back to a last end nailbiter, a final two shots to Norfolk giving them a 22-19 win. Whitehead's block took a little while to warm up, the scores nip and tuck to 10 ends with only one shot separating the two teams. From 10 ends on, however, the shots flowed in Norfolk's direction and they maintained a six-shot lead from 15 ends through to 21, the final score 19-13.

Ironically it was one of the rinks who won the week previously who struggled to find their form. Against a strong Hertfordshire block, led by junior international Devon Cooper with previous junior international and national 2-wood singles runner up Jess Eley at three, the block made up of Ada Sumpter, Rita Basted, Jan Dearman and Jenny Kirby found the going tough and were unable to claw back a half way score of 18-3, with the 21 end result at 35-8 in Hertfordshire's favour.

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Despite the loss to Cambridgeshire the previous week, the league is still wide open with the other game of the group seeing Cambridgeshire lose out to Essex by eight shots overall but winning on four rinks. It means Cambridgeshire still sit on the top of the table with 26 points and a shot difference of plus 19, Norfolk 24 points and minus one, Essex 14 points and plus eight and Hertfordshire two points minus 26 shots. Norfolk don't play again until Saturday, July 8 where they will take on Essex away from home. At that point, the rest of the games will have been completed and Norfolk will know exactly what they need to do to qualify for the next stages.

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