Norfolk Premier continue winning streak as Gloucestershire fail again

Recently-crowned SMPT English Masters champion, Jack Pye. Picture: Teresa Goldsmith

Recently-crowned SMPT English Masters champion, Jack Pye. Picture: Teresa Goldsmith - Credit: Archant

Inter-County Championship action saw Norfolk Premier facing Gloucestershire Premier in the quarter-finals at Daventry – with both teams on the back of a six-game winning run in the group stages.

The last time they met in the knockouts, Norfolk inflicted a heavy defeat on their opponents and Gloucestershire were determined to gain revenge – but it was not to be.

In the singles Jack Pye, fresh from winning his first major SMPT title, opened with a 15-14 win against Olly Hipkiss before beating Ryan Knight 14-8. Gary Best added a 14-7 win against Knight in the second half.

The Norfolk rinks took maximum points with Lewis Cranston, John Jarvis, Owen Cranston and Selwyn Goldsmith winning 13-10 and 19-7 while Jack Marshall, Bob Oatway, John Turner and Melly Woods won 14-8 and 15-7.

The triples were unbeaten, with Lesley Crowe, Morgan Warnes and Simon Willies winning 13-8 and 15-9 while Mark Linsdell, Debs Sparham and Keith Cooke drew their first game 9-9 before winning their second 21-7.

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The only success for Norfolk in the pairs was a fantastic 24-2 win for Jason Woods and David Lamb, but this was enough to earn the bonus points.

The final score was 31-9 to Norfolk, which left Gloucestershire licking their wounds yet again after being eliminated by Norfolk Premier.

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In the semi-finals, Norfolk will play Dorset, who were surprise winners against 2015 champions Hampshire.

The other quarter-finals saw defending champions West Mids beat West Sussex while Cornwall defeated Essex Premier in a dramatic tie-break.

Meanwhile, Wymondham eased into the final of the Norfolk Challenge cup with a 17-3 win at Connaught. The first singles sessions saw Jack Pye beat Sheila Bragg 15-3 and Chris Mann beat Lee Fallows 13-7 to put Wymondham into the driving seat and there was only ever going to be one winner in this all-Breckland League clash.

Wymondham will face the winners of the match between Bob Carter and Forncett match in the final.

Halvergate visited East Tuddenham for the second leg of their Bure Cup semi-final and despite a brave performance they were pipped at the post.

Already leading 14-10 from the first leg, Halvergate increased their lead to 18-10 after an excellent first-session performance that saw Keith Cooke's triple win 10-3 against Trevor Brown and David Lamb beat Chris Mann 5-2.

East Tuddenham rallied their troops, though, and won six of the next eight games to level the match at 22-22 on points with just one session remaining.

Halvergate then saw their cup hopes shattered as Gary Best's triple beat David Lamb 7-2 and Chris Mann's triple beat Jason Woods 5-2 to claim East Tuddenham a place in the Bure Cup final against Horsford Heroes.

In the Norwich Cup quarter-finals Forncett went down on shots after holding visitors Wymondham to an 8-8 draw on points. Bure League action saw East Tuddenham win 8-2 at Windows with Gary Best's triple winning 23-9, Melly Woods' triple winning 22-7 and Simon Willies' triple winning 20-9. Andy Drummie collected Windows' only win beating Robin Amos 16-11.

Keith Cooke's Halvergate triple romped to a 30-9 win at Horsford Heroes where the visitors won 8-2. A tight match at Hevingham saw the home side go down 6-4 against Horsford Heroes. Carol Aggas, Nigel James and John Aggas scored the visitors' biggest win of 16-8 against Maurice Kemp's triple.

Horsford BC ended their dismal run of defeats with an 8-2 home win against fellow strugglers Windows. B Russell, E Mills and Tim Flack of Horsford beat Russell Daynes' triple 19-12, but the biggest win of the night was by Windows' Keith Halford and his triple who won 23-11. Front-runners Halvergate beat Thorpe Marriott 10-0, with Jason Woods beating George Clarke 26-2.

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