Today's match between Herts and Bucks (aka the Venison Derby) was a battle for top spot in the ICC qualifying group. Herts fell just 2 points short of the requirement to qualify as group winners. Second position in a tough group is still a good result and Herts will now play a Preliminary Round match in the Main Knockout Competition on the weekend of 3/4 February.
The singles representatives performed very well with Michael West winning both his games (14-9 and 20-7) while Jeanette Gayler took 3 points with a draw (11-11) and a win (14-11). With the bonus points, the singles discipline contributed 9 points to the Herts total.
Pauline Taylor and Alan Hare lost a tight first game 11-13 before winning in the afternoon 18-9. Audrey and Brian Fowler opened with an 11-8 win but were on the wrong end of a 4-19 score line in the later session. The Pairs were unable to convert a 1 shot advantage from Session 1 into the 2 bonus points which could have made a big difference.
The Triples discipline was a big contributor for Herts with a maximum 10 points. Adrianne West, Mary Chadd and Brian McGivern (17-7 and 20-9) and Jill Oakes, Alan Spicer and Tony Gayler (17-4 and 16-8) comfortably took their bonus points.
The Fours were not so fortunate as Bucks completed a clean sweep of the points in this discipline. Jeff Branch, John Taylor, Peter Griffiths and Sam Salmon went down 10-15 and 7-12 while Sue Murray, Margaret Regan, Ted Nolan and Ken Murray lost 9-18 and 5-24.
The ICC team can now take a breather from this competition although many of them will be competing in the Inter County Rinks Competition at Guildford on 9 December.
Well done to everyone who played in the Inter County Championship qualifying phase. We ran Bucks very close and should be rightly proud of our second spot in the group.