Over the weekend of the 8th/9th October the first ever Ladies British Isles was held at Melton Mowbray. Teams from England, Ireland, Wales, and Scotland met for the first time to compete in both individual disciplines and a team event. The ladies have been campaigning for 9 years for this opportunity, and met a good deal of resistence along the way
In the England team were 4 ladies from Gloucestershire: Monica Carter, Carol Preece, Rebecca Finch, and Jo Featherstone.
Monica and Carol participated in the Team Event. Day 1 saw good wins against Scotland (46-23) and Wales (43-23) but a 27-40 loss to a very strong and experienced Ireland team saw them finish the day in second. Day 2 started with similar wins over Scotland (58-26) and Wales (57-20). The Ireland match proved to be much closer this time with 2 or 3 key ends seeing the match swing in favour of Ireland 42-50. This meant England were comfortable runners up in the Team Event.
Becky led in the individual Pairs event with Emily Thomas (Dorset). They started out with a 27-9 win over Scotland before facing an exceptional Irish pair. The game was close, and they were in contention going into the final end but missed out 12-16. A final big win 23-11 over Wales meant they were runners up to the unbeaten Irish pair.
Jo had slightly better fortune, along with Lynn Dean (Dorset), Christine Harvey (Humberside) and Lynn Orlando (Oxfordshire), in the individual 4s. Their opening match against Scotland was tight but saw them win 14-13. They followed this up with a convincing win against Wales 17-7 who themselves had beaten the Irish 4 in their first match. This meant a win over the Irish team in their last match would give them the title, and despite a nervy last end they ran out 12-7 winners, giving them England’s only winner’s trophy of the weekend.
Overall Ireland dominated winning the Team Event, Singles, and Pairs, although, England ran them very close in each. A great achievement against an Irish team that had a good number of past and present Senior International bowlers. Scotland were the only other winners of the weekend picking up the Triples title.
Results in summary…