LINDLEY Bowling Club is the venue, but who will be the winner?
That’s the question on everyone’s lips in the build-up to Sunday’s final of the Huddersfield Merit (2.00).
It’s the first time in over a century that the Daisy Lea Lane club has staged the Huddersfield and District Bowling Association’s big event, sponsored by TJ’s Garden Products of Linthwaite.
Two former winners are in the field and one of them, Springwood’s John Webster, is looking to hold onto the title he won against Dave Fox at Almondbury BC last year.
No-one has managed to defend the crown since Ashley Daykin in 2002 and, before that, only Milnsbridge BC’s Mark Sykes (1993 and 94) managed to achieve the feat in the previous half century.
The other former champion in Sunday’s field is Thongsbridge’s Nicky White, who took the title in 2006.
There are plenty of intriguing ties –the winner gets £300 – with Syngenta supporters guaranteed a representative in the quarter finals as former Yorkshire County junior colleagues Andrew Heaume and Adam Douglas clash at the first stage.
Observers will also be glued to the meeting between former county junior colleagues Danny Beeby (Longwood), who landed this season’s Spring Handicap, and Jack Dyson of Netherton Con, who has been in excellent form this term.
Frank Greenwood of Golcar Lib – Champion of Champions winner in 1996 – and Frank Griffin (Waterloo), will be pressing the cause of the veterans, while plenty in the crowd will have half an eye on Netherton Con’s county man Steven Haigh, the Yorkshire Merit winner from 1998 who can also count the William Stones and the Barker Sports Handicaps among his titles.
Laurie Hopkins Menswear have given £50 in vouchers as a prize for the best dressed bowler.
Draw: Andrew Heaume (Syngenta) v Adam Douglas (Syngenta), Martin Griffiths (Lindley Lib) v Simon Walder (Spen Victoria), Frank Greenwood (Golcar Lib) v John Webster (Springwood), Dave Fisher (Moldgreen Con) v Les Holmes (Lower Hopton), Bernard Megson (Lindley Lib) v Carl Taylor (Linthwaite C&B), Daniel Beeby (Longwood) v Jack Dyson (Netherton Con), Frank Griffin (Waterloo) v Nicky White (Thongsbridge), Ray Whitwam (Longwood) v Steven Haigh (Netherton Con).
Bowlers should note the Champion of Champions final will be played on the original date of Sunday, October 3, and not as announced at the last meeting.