Fixtures and Selections

MATCH REPORTS for the 2024 Season
 

Match Report – OBA v Bedfordshire BA @ Woodstock BC on 21 May 2024

Woodstock Bowls Club hosted their first County match for the OBA against Bedfordshire BA on a cloud covered afternoon and on a dampish green, despite the club’s hard work for preparing a satisfactory green for the game. The club did a great job in hosting with a lovely meal and everyone enjoyed it.

Most of the games were close except for the devastating Oxfordshire rink playing on rink 6, who took no prisoners in their game and ensured the OBA team won by 135-108 shots overall.

On rink 1 our team of: Mike Andrews, Tom Saunders, Gordon Hooker and skip, Paul Demczak  raced to a 8-3 after 6 ends and that after losing the first two ends, but the Bedfordhire players dominated the middle of the game moving to an 18-12 lead after 18 ends and despie picking up 4 shots in the last three ends, lost 17-20 to their rivals. The lead for rink 2 was John Standen, playing his first game for the county and despite a surge from the Beds team between end 6-10 of 10 shots, John and the other team members: Tony Wright, Richard Barnett & Keith Buckle managed to hang on for a 20-19 win.

President Mike Morris on rink 3 played with Phil Dawe on his maiden county game, venue host Brian Clarke and Chris Lewis. In yet another close game, the opponents had a lead of 11-6 at the half way stage, but a 5 and 4 on the 11 th and 12 th ends pulled them back into the game and only the dropped 4 on the last end secured the close win for the Beds team by 23-21. On rink 4 the visitors won again by 21-17 shots, despite a seven on end 17 from the team of Brian Ealey, Keith Dunsby, Brian Ray and Mike Petersen. I didn’t help that the Beds rink won 9 consecutive ends from ends 6 to14.

Rink 5 consisted of Ken Williams, Mickey Conrad-Banls, John Hurren & Paul Robbins, who never got ahead in the whole game. By end 19 they battled to get within one point of their opponents, but alas Mike Bertrand’s rink scored another 5 shots in the remaining two ends.  Rink 6 clearly had the best rink of the day and not only was the pace of the green quicker than all the others, but the winning heroes on the day were David Byers, Ken Cooper, Tim Stevens (League Captain of the host club) and Les Days with the terrific score of 47-6 shots.   Of course they bought all the rest of the team drinks afterwards (or is my memory not so good !) to claim the otherwise close match, into a splendid home victory.

Well done to all and a big Thank You to members of Woodstock BC for your hospitality on the day.

                          ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

 

HOME COUNTIES MATCH OXFORDSHIRE v MIDDLESEX, 

SATURDAY 18th MAY 2024

VENUE – HENDON BOWLS CLUB

 

The OBA Team Manager Paul Demczak saw a great many of his selected players go south to North London on Saturday 18th May however a large number were not going to bowl but destined for Wembley to see Oxford v Bolton in the FA playoffs. The remainder of his squad went to Hendon Bowls Club to play the first round of the Home Counties League against Middlesex. After an encouraging team talk from Paul and some rebel rousing motivation from Team Captain Kevin Alder the six rinks commenced their challenge of producing a win.

Rink 1 consisted of Roy Radband as lead, 2 – Jamie Goodwin, 3 – Mark Vaughan and skip Chris Weller.

They started off well winning the first three ends and gaining 5 shots. Middlesex came back and gained 2 shots on the next end. Chris and his team kept it tight until the 15th end when Middlesex picked up 3 shots to go in front by one shot 11 – 12. It was nip and tuck for the next five ends with Chris going into the last end 2 shots down 14 – 16 however the team dug in and gained two shots for a draw, final score 16 – 16.

Rink 2 consisted of Lee Young as lead, 2 – Paul Jelfs, 3 – John Major and skip Will Campion.

They had a disastrous and unlucky start losing the first nine ends 0 – 19. They stuck at it and got 2 shots on the next end. Will and his team didn’t give up restricting Middlesex from gaining too many more shots while picking up shots themselves. They kept heads and reduced the deficit, final score 13 – 26.

Rink 3 consisted of Mick Jelfs as lead, 2 – Richard Green, 3 – David Leighfield and skip Martin Shepherd.

They started off well winning the first five ends and gaining 9 shots. Middlesex came back and took the next five ends equalling the score to 9 – 9. Martin and his team kept it tight until the 18th end when Middlesex picked up 2 shots to go in front by one shot 17 – 18. Martin and his team put the pressure on to win the next three ends and his rink, final score 22 – 18.

Rink 4 consisted of Matt Osling as lead, 2 – John Hurren, 3 – David Tidball and skip Chris Charles.

They did not have the best of starts losing the first six ends 0 – 7. They kept going and picked up 3 shots on the next end. The game alternated between Chris and his team winning shots with Middlesex gaining a similar number.  Chris was up for a win chasing his woods up the green like a young gazelle (which he is not) and pulling off some great shots. Chris’s team kept at it preventing Middlesex from gaining too many more. They kept their heads and reduced the deficit narrowly losing, final score 13 – 15.

Rink 5 consisted of Gethin Osling as lead (one of the OBA Junior players), 2 – Paul Costin, 3 – Brian Bloomfield and skip Kevin Alder.

They did not have the best of starts and were unlucky to be losing 3 – 12 after six ends. Gethin was finding it drawing some great woods. Kevin and his team started to gel with Kevin drawing some great shots to win ends and to restrict Middlesex from gaining too many more.  They stuck at it levelling the score at 17 ends 19 – 19.  Middlesex won the last four ends despite some good play by Kev’s team, final score 19 – 24.

Rink 6 consisted of Jamie MacDonough as lead, 2 – Dave Lattimore, 3 – Paul Robbins and skip Paul Gladden.

They started off well, being in front 6 – 2 after 5 ends.   Middlesex picked a three on the next end however Paul and his team fought back to go 13 – 3 up after 10 ends. Middlesex came back and gained shots on the next few ends resulting Pauls team being 17 – 10 up after 16 ends. Middlesex got the bit between their teeth and picked up shots on the next four ends going into the last end 17 – 18 down.  Despite Paul’s team holding shots on the last end the Middlesex killed the end, not once but twice. Playing the 21st end for the third time Paul’s team held onto the shot they had acquired and gained a draw, final score 18 – 18.

Overall Score: Oxfordshire 101   -   Middlesex 117

 
OBA v Northamptonshire (Friendly) - Away - 14 May 2024
 
Oxfordshire visited Kingsthorpe  Bowls club to open their midweek  friendly fixtures against  Northamptonshire.  A tight game ensured on 5 rinks but a heavy defeat on one rink decided the match.
On rink 1, Roger Hopkins, Tim Cox, Les Days and Alex Fleming  thought they were bit part actors in an episode  of Whickers World as they lost 14-11. Next door  Bob Wright, Brian Clarke, John Benfield and Brian  Broomfield  picked up a 5 on the  last end, but also lost by 3 shots 20-17.
Rink 3 looked to be loaded and Roy Radband, Martin Cooper, Keith  Buckle and President  Mike Morris, who duly obliged winning  23-11. Rink 4 was the performance  of the day, Nigel Satchel, Tony Wright, John  Hurren  and Paul Robbins  looked dead and buried at 14-1 down, but they fought back going into the last end 1 up, but a dropped  2 meant they lost 18-16, but still  a very good  result. 
Barry Hall, Gary Panons, Richard Barnett and Chris  Cox all played well and won 18-13.
Past President  Paul  Demczak  who has been  playing  on rink 3 for the last few years found himself  in the strange surroundings of rink 6. But he had 3 very experienced  players with  him, Chris Lewis,  Martin Oliver and Mike Peterson, so was probably  shocked  to lose 32-11. This was enough  to give Northamptonshire  a 108-98 win.
Barry Hall  and Gary Panons were awarded their colts badges at the after dinner meal.
Alex
 
Middleton Cup  trial match  v Wiltshire - 11 May 2024
 
Oxfordshire  completed their Middleton  cup trial matches at a sunny Chipping Norton in front of a large crowd against  Wiltshire.  As expected  it was a very tight match with  both sides winning  on 3 rinks. 
Wiltshire, who were 9 shots down after 10 ends changed 18 of their players and had a better second half but still lost by 2, despite picking up a 6 on the last end in the final match against Kevin Alder's rink and 18 shots on the last 4 ends overall  to make the match tighter than it should  have been. 
On rink 1 Joe Justin, Mark Vaughan, Martin Shepherd  and Mark Charlett were 13 down after 17 ends but won the last 4 ends to lose 24-16. Rink 2 was an all Banbury rink of Lee Young, Will Campion, Mark Sykes and AJ Docherty who won 15 ends and finished 25-16 up.
Sam Watts, Paul Jelfs, Craig Morphett and Nathan Lewis have all had better days losing 28-12. Mick Jelfs, Keith Holloway, Chris Charles  and (Kevin Alder?)  only 3 shots down after 17 ends fell away to lose 28-16.
Nigel Siford, David Leighfield, Remi Clanfield and Shane Cooper all had  excellent  games, in particular, Remi, to win 30-11, a match winning  performance. Not to be outdone Mick Nash, Phil Gladden. Ian Henwood  and Jason King 14-11 down after 14 ends picked up 17 shots on the next 5 ends to win 28-18. The overall score was 127-125 to Oxfordshire. 
The game will have given manager Paul Demczak  plenty to think about. Chipping Norton  were excellent  hosts, the green bowled  as well  as any we will  play on this season.  The pre match bacon rolls, tea and coffee were well received as was the post match food and the bar staff were kept busy.
Wiltshire, like Gloucestershire  last week, proved to be strong opposition and on today's evidence should have a good  season. 
Alex
 

Middleton Cup  trial match  v Gloucestershire - 4 May 2024

Oxfordshire  travelled to Cheltenham to play Gloucestershire  in our 2nd Middleton cup trial.  Gloucestershire  were last seasons  finalists and were always going to be a difficult  team to play.  They had a pretty much full side whereas Oxfordshire were trying some new faces and experimenting  with some positional changes. As captain Mark Charlett said there are 24 places up for grabs.

Oxfordshire  started really well and were 17 up after 7 ends, but Gloucestershire  started going through  the gears and were only 8 down after 14 ends. They then went into top gear and 5 of the Oxfordshire  rinks found reverse to give Gloucestershire  a 130-108 win.
Rink 1 was Nigel Siford, John Major having another good  game, Martin Shepherd  and Shane Cooper,  they were 12-5 up after 11, but a combination of good Gloucestershire  bowling and an extremely tricky rink saw them fall away to lose 23-18.
The rink of Roy Radband, Richard  Green,  Paul Mabbutt and Ian Snowdon always struggled  with  Ian finding gaps on numerous  occasions, losing 25-15. Likewise Mick Jelfs, Paul Jelfs, Keith Holloway and Phil Gladden  have had better  days losing 28-13. The scores on both rinks were a bit harsh and did not really reflect the  whole  story. Mick Nash, Paul Robbins,  Remi Clanfield and Chris  Charles  where coasting at 13-5 up after 8 ends, but somehow only managed to pick up 1 shot on the  next 11 ends and eventually  lost 22-17.
Jamie MacDonogh, Mark Vaughan,  Ian Henwood  and Mark Charlett nearly had a dream start picking up a 7 on the  first end, 20-7 up after 15, then they had a slight wobble but held on to win 23-17.
The final rink of Lee Young, Jamie Goodwin, Will Campion and a very quiet Craig Morphett found it difficult  to get going and were 14-3 down after 10 ends. They managed to pick up a couple of ones, before Craig woke up at 3.56pm, found his voice and his form. The rest of his rink responded and they finished up winning  21-15, an extremely  impressive  performance. 
There is probably  more to learn losing  to a really good side than rolling over weak opposition.  The experience  gained by the new players will be invaluable. We wish Gloucestershire  all the best for the season and look forward to facing another strong  County, Wiltshire at Chipping  Norton next Saturday,  11 o'clock  start. The players would appreciate  your support. 
Alex

 

Middleton Cup  trial match  v Headington B C.  -27 April 2024

Oxfordshire opened their campaign with a trip to Headington  to kick start the club's  Centenary celebrations with a Middleton cup  trial against the  club.
The game was played in very cold conditions, it started with  a fine drizzle that fortunately  stopped  after a few ends.
On rink 1, Jamie MacDonogh who had a good game along with late call up Tony Wright,  Omar Sharif and Brian  Broomfield always had too much against a rink that contained  father and son John and Ian  Henwood and ran out 28-6 winners. Rink 2 had the impressive  Adderbury  trio of Mick and Paul Jelfs and skip Phil Gladden  along with  Alex  Fleming won a tight match against  Colin Whiteheads rink 15-11.
Rink 3 looked a strong County rink with Nigel Siford, John Major, David Leighfield and Shane Cooper, they all played  really  well with John Major being particularly  good and won 19-11 against a rink skipped by Steve Gould.
The shy, retiring  Craig Morphet skipped Chris Lewis, Matt Osling and Paul  Robbins against  a strong  Headington  rink of Sam Watts, Simon Hastings,  Russell  Edwards and Ian Snowdon. Craig's running  woods being the difference  in a 20-16 win.
It would have been  rude to whitewash the hosts so Gethin Osling, Jamie Goodwin, John Hurren  and Chris Charles duly obliged  loosing 19-16. It could have gone either way with the scores being level going into the last end before a good shot from Paul Mabbutt decided the game.
Roy Radband, Richard Green, Martin Shepherd and Kevin Alder picked up 19 shots on the last 7 ends to win 26-6 against a rink containing County regulars Paul Comley and Ray Gaskins. The final score was 124-68 to Oxfordshire. 
Considering  the weather we have had the green bowled really well and is a credit to the club. It was nice to see so many new faces in the team, everyone bowled well and it strengthens the pool of players manager Paul Demczak  has to choose from. We travel to Cheltenham  next week before hosting Wiltshire  at Chipping Norton  in two very difficult  trial matches.
We would  like to wish Headington  all the best with the remainder  of their celebrations. 
Alex
 
 
..........................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
MATCH REPORTS for the 2023 SEASON
 
OBA match report v Worcesterhire BA (Friendly) played at Banbury Borough BC, on 13 Sept, 2023
 
After 4 years as President Paul Demzcak ended his term of office at Banbury Borough against Worcestershire. It was a tight match with Oxfordshire winning 112-97.
The President had Chris Lewis, Michel Grossnickel and Mike Peterson with him, winning 19-10. It was Mike Peterson's 450th match an amazing achievement. Geoff Roynon, Kenny Cooper, Richard Barnett and Ken Williams won 7 of the last 8 ends to win 16-13. Martin Acock, Mike Jones who was playing his 150th match, Tim Cox and Paul Robbins where 15-15 after 15 ends but pulled away to win 25-19.
David Byers, Mark Boulton, Roy Radband and Mick Morris were unlucky to lose 16-14. Colin Haley, Geoff Smith, Tony Wright and Brian Bloomfield were always behind against a strong rink losing 27-15.
The highest winning rink for Oxfordshire was Nigel Satchel, Russell Box, Brian Clarke and Alex Fleming, they always had to much for the opposition and were unlucky to only win 23-12, Alex's 2nd consecutive highest winning rink.
Banbury Borough as always put on an excellent meal. Mike Jones and Mike Peterson were both congratulated on their respective landmarks, Brian Bloomfield for his work as assistant match secretary and Paul for the job he has done as President.
So another good season for the midweek friendly side came to an end.   Alex 
 
OBA match report v Royal Berkshire BA (Friendly) played at Witney Town BC, on 6 Sept, 2023
 
Oxfordshire returned to winning ways when they entertained local rivals Berkshire at Witney Town bowls club.
Over 5 rinks there was only 1 shot dividing the sides, but 1 big rink for Oxfordshire made the difference. Roger Oliver, John Stephens, John Benfield and David Lattimore dropped a 2 on the last end to draw 19-19. Bernie May, Mark Boulton, Brian Clarke and Mike Morris dropped 8 shots on the last 2 ends to draw 19-19 as well. Allan Carter, Michel Grossnickel, Les Days and Mike Peterson where unfortunate to lose 19-16.
The comeback of the day was Mike Andrew, Allan Murdoch, Roy Radband and Paul Demzcak: 17-1 down after 9 ends, with the President looking decidedly unhappy. Mike shortened the jack length and the comeback was on. Winning 10 of the last 12 ends, they where unlucky to lose 21-17. The first of Oxfordshire's two winning rinks was Geoff Roynon, Bill Stewart, Ken Williams and the ever dependable John Hurren who played well throughout to win 21-15.
The rink that decided the result was Roger Hopkins, Brian Ealey, Richard Barnett and Alex Fleming making a return after injury, every single player was outstanding, winning 31-13. The final result was 123-106 to Oxfordshire.
Witney Town showed how a match should be hosted, there was a team of excellent car park attendants on arrival, a lot of welcoming faces, plenty of bar staff and a really good meal.
Well done Witney.
 
OBA match report v Gloucestershire BA (Friendly) played at Chipping Norton BC, on 30 August, 2023
 
After a poor performance at Newport Pagnell the day before, the thought was that we couldn't be as bad again when we entertained Gloucestershire at Chipping Norton. Well we may not have been as bad, but the result was the same. Gloucestershire were probably stronger opponents than Buckinghamshire and deserved their 123-113 win.
Rink 1 of Allan Carter,  Nigel Satchel, Mike Peterson and Brian Bloomfield had no luck, dropping 2 unfortunate 3's on the last 2 ends to loose 23-19.
Martin Acock, Marc Boulton, Tony Wright and home club skip David Lattimore had a hard fought game, but won 17-15. The President with Percy Hickman, Michel Grossnickel & Mick Morris got off to a flyer picking up two sixes and a four, they continued  their good form to win 31-16.
Bernie May, Geoff Smith, Tim Cox and Brian Clarke had a close game losing 21-1 Chris Lewis, Martin Heath, Les Days and Ken Williams played well, but were always just behind losing 20-19, despite picking up a 3 on the last end.
Rink 6 was the rink that killed it for Oxfordshire, Mike Andrew, Kenny Cooper, John Hurren and Paul Robbins lost 28-8,
John Hurren after a run of highest winning rinks crashed back to earth.
Chipping Norton put on an excellent meal and Geoff Smith was awarded his County badge and Martin Heath his colts badge. Alex
 
OBA match report v Buckinghamshire BA (Friendly) played at Newport Pagnall BC, on 29 August, 2023
 
Oxfordshire had the long journey to play Buckinghamshire at Newport Pagnell. The weather looked overcast and gloomy and by the end of the afternoon so was Oxfordshire's mood. In a game of few bright spots Oxfordshire lost 116-73.
We had 2 winning rinks Allan Carter, John Stephens, Mike Peterson and Paul Robbins 16-8 up at the halfway stage stumbled but picked up a 3 on the last end to win 20-16. The outstanding Oxfordshire rink was Mike Jones, Colin Haley, Richard Barnett and John Hurren, 10 up after 4 ends and kept up the good work winning 23-11, another highest rink for John.
Roger Oliver, Mark Boulton, Roy Radband and Burford Gala winner Brian Clarke were in contention for most of the match, but faded away to lose 16-9, which was good compared to some.
You like to have 3 rinks competing for the highest winning rink not the highest losing rink, but with the remaining rinks losing by 54 shots, it was a close fought affair.
Nigel Satchel, Mickey Conrad Banks, Ken Williams and Mike Morris only lost 26-8. Mike Andrew, Martin Oliver, Tim Cox and Brian Bloomfield lost 22-6. Geoff Roynon, Bill Stewart, Tony Wright and Paul Demzcak kept it close losing 25-7 to claim highest losing rink by losing most ends. To be fair to Paul, he was playing a loaded rink of 4 home club players. Not sure what the excuses were on the other rinks, but we have the chance to bounce back tomorrow at Chipping Norton against Gloucestershire.
 
 
OBA match report v Warwickshire BA (Friendly) played at Lillington BC, on 22 August, 2023
 
 
Oxfordshire travelled to Royal Leamington spa to play Warwickshire at the Lillington bowls club.
In what was a hard fought contest on a very good green, that could have gone either way, Oxfordshire won 118-113.
On rink 1 the loaded rink of Allan Carter, Michel Grossnickel, John Hurren and Mike Morris, 7-0 up after 2 ends, kept the lead to finish up 23-14 winners. Next door Roger Hopkins, Marc Boulton, Roy Radband and Alex Fleming drew 18-18, probably a fair result.
The President Paul Demzcak had Chris Lewis, Russell Box who has seen sense moving from Warwickshire to Oxfordshire and Mike Peterson with him. The thought of being part of a men's team winning at Leamington was too much for Chris who had to retire after 7 ends with his rink losing 10-2, fortunately his replacement Brian (Bunny) Radburn steadied the ship and if it hadn't been for a heavy wood from the opposing skip when Oxfordshire were holding 5 on the last end, the score would have been better than a 17-19 loss.
Geoff Roynon, Tim Cox, Tony Wright and Brian Bloomfield had a rare off day losing 26-11. Nigel Satchel, David Wedge, Richard Barnett and Brian Clarke, despite dropping 4 on the last end, won 21-19.
John Benfield, Ken Williams and skip Paul Robbins were companions of lead - Allan Hunt on what after 30 years, was Allan's last game for the County. It was fitting that they should be the highest winning rink 28-17. Allan has played 222 times for the County, been President and Chairman when no one else wanted the job. He was County Treasurer for many years and has been one of the Counties loyalist workers. Allan has been good company to play with and all the players wish him all the best for the future. Alex
 
 OBA match report v The English Fire Service (Friendly) played at Oxford C & C BC, on 15 August, 2023

 

Oxfordshire hosted the English Fire Service at Oxford City and County in what is a new fixture. Originally a 6 rink fixture, finished up with Oxfordshire lending the Fire Service a rink and playing a 5 rink fixture.
On rink 1 David Byers, newcomer Steve Chilmaid, Mike Peterson and Brian Bloomfield won 21-14. Rink 2 was Oxfordshire playing Oxfordshire with Chris Lewis, Martin Heath another newcomer, Richard Green and Alex Fleming playing Roger Oliver, Nigel Satchel, John Benfield and Brian Clarke, fortunately the Oxfordshire rink had more firepower winning 21-16.
The President along with Mike Clarke,  Keith Dunsby and Gordon Hooker put the flames out early on and won 30-11.
On rink 4 Geoff Roynon, Tony Wright, Martin Oliver and David Lattimore had a hard fought match winning 23-19.
The final rink of Bernie May, Brian Ealey, Tim Cox and John Hurren were on fire, 23-1 up after 7 ends they finished up 39-9 winners and claimed the pens.
The final score was 134-69 to Oxfordshire, the result was immaterial as it was an enjoyable afternoon, the Fire Service players had travelled from as far afield as Newcastle, Derbyshire and Northumberland to play this fixture, hopefully they enjoyed the day.   Alex
 
 OBA Match Report v Bristol C & C (Friendly) played at Severn Vale BC , Bristol on 8 August 2023

Oxfordshire had the difficult trip to Severn Vale bowls club, somewhere in Bristol on what looked to be a wet and miserable afternoon to play City and County of Bristol. The rain mainly held off, but it was still a miserable afternoon for 4 Oxfordshire rinks.

On rink 1 Mike Jones, Mickey Conrad Banks, John Hurren and Brian Clarke picked up two ones on the first two ends and thought they might have a good day, losing the next 12 ends changed their minds, they had a mini revival and lost 25-12.
Rink 2 was no better, Mike Clarke, Marc Boulton, Percy Hickman and Alex Fleming dropped 12 ones to lose 22-13.
The President Paul Demczak had a rare off day and along with Roger Oliver, Kenny Cooper and Roy Radband lost 19-15, mainly due to inspirational play from Bristol's number 3. 
Roger Hopkins, Tony Wright, Mike Peterson and Mike Morris picked up two ones on the last 2 ends to win 24-23. Rink 5 was the highlight for Oxfordshire with Geoff Roynon, Tim Cox who put in another good performance, Martin Oliver and the ever dependable Brian Bloomfield who won 24-11. Rink 6 was Chris Lewis, John Stephens, Bill Stewart and Paul Robbins who lost 22-18, despite picking up 8 on the last 2 ends. The rink they played skipped by Roger Harrison looked really strong.
The final score was 123-106 to Bristol, a disappointing performance from Oxfordshire in a match they would expect to win. The damp conditions certainly helped Bristol, the rub of the green seemed to be against us, but overall a bad day at the office. Alex 
 
OBA Match Report v Wiltshire (Friendly) played at Supermarine BC , Swindon on 25 July 2023 
 
Oxfordshire travelled the short distance to Supermarine bowls club for a match against near neighbours Wiltshire.
On rink 1 Brian Bloomfield so often the saviour of the team was along with Martin Acock, Terry Gripe and Richard Barnett having a game to forget. 
Rink 2 was more successful, Roger Oliver, Kenny Cooper, reserve Tony Wright who had a fine game and John Hurren who was skipping for the county for the first time picked up 15 shots on the last 5 ends to win 21-13 and claim the pens.
Percy Hickman, Nigel Satchel, Mike Peterson and Paul Demzcak were behind for large parts of the game but won the last 3 ends to win 17-16. Brian Ealey, John Benfield, Brian Clarke and Mike Morris where also 2nd best till the 15th, picking up 8 shots on the last 4 to win 17-14.
Bernie May, Tony Smith, Roy Radband and Alex Fleming where always just behind and despite a good performance from Tony, narrowly lost 16-15. Chris Lewis, Mickey Conrad Banks, Chris Cox and Paul Robbins only won 6 ends and slipped to a 17-12 defeat.
The final score was Oxfordshire 88 and Wiltshire 95. The way we were coming back in the last few ends makes you wonder what would have happened if we had played 21 ends instead of 18.
Assistant match secretary Brian Bloomfield was awarded his 200 game badge at the after match meal, a remarkable achievement. Alex
 
 OBA Match Report v Isle of Wight BA, played at Three Mile Cross BC , Reading on 19 July 2023 

   

Oxfordshire travelled to The Three Mile Cross bowls club to play the Isle of Wight Bowling Association. It would prove to be  successful day for the County winning on all 6 rinks, 130-70 being the final score.
There was 2 relatively close games, Mike Jones, John Stephens, John Hurren and David Lattimore winning 23-18. David Byers, Tim Cox, Gordon Hooker and Mike Morris also won by 5 shots 16-11.
Mike Clarke, Tony Wright, Roy Radband and Paul Demzcak started slowly but upped their game to win 22-12. Roger Oliver, Bill Stewart, Mike Peterson and Paul Robbins also won 22-12.
Roger Hopkins, Michel Grossnickel, Chris Cox and Alex Fleming dropped 7 single shots to win 20-7. But a 7 on the 15th end and a 5 on the 20th meant the pens went to Nigel Satchel, Mickey Conrad Banks, Richard Barnett and Brian Bloomfield who finished 27-10 winners.
An enjoyable day out for Oxfordshire. Alex 
 
Match Report for the OBA v HCBA (Friendly) at Kidlington BC on 18 July 2023 

 

Oxfordshire entertained The Home Counties Chairman Ian Whelpton and his team in a 5 rink match at his home club Kidlington.
On rink 1 after being 11-3 up Roger Oliver, Tim Cox, Ken Williams and Mike Morris dropped 12 shots without reply to lose 19-15 to a Middlesex rink, a rare loss for Mike. After a good start Nigel Satchel, Kenny Cooper, John Hurren and Brian Bloomfield found themselves in a tight game, but came through to beat a Buckinghamshire rink 20-16.
On rink 3 Richard Green, Michel Grossnickel, Brian Clarke and President Paul Demzcak played Home Counties Chairman Ian Whelpton who had regular Oxfordshire skip David Lattimore with him, despite good bowling from David, the Oxfordshire rink deserved to win 20-12.
On rink 4 Geoff Roynon, Colin Haley, Mike Peterson and Paul Robbins where always ahead against a Hampshire rink winning 22-11 to claim the pens. The final rink of Mike Jones, Allan Murdoch, Bill Stewart and Alex Fleming looked in trouble at the halfway stage losing 12-4 against a Kent rink, but they clawed their way back to win 21-18.
The final score was 98-76 to Oxfordshire. Kidlington as always were the perfect hosts and put on an excellent meal.    Alex 

 

OBA Match Report for the annual fixture v Bowls Oxfordshire Ladies – 11 July 2023

Last year the ladies were victorious in this annual fixture, so the OBA team were determined  to reverse the situation, but were mindful that they were up against a strong BOL team. However, good starts by 5 of the Men’s rinks set the tone of the day and the same 5 rinks ended in victories for the OBA. President Paul Demczak supported by Chris Lewis, David Byers & Mike Petersen set the example with a “take no prisoners” win of 34-3.

BOL President Pat Ray, also set an example for her team, by winning her rink by 13 - 11, but alas all the other rinks went the way of the OBA teams for a final emphatic score of 129 – 55.

The Oxford City & County green was challenging and the rain drenched surface gave an advantage to the OBA, who added the extra push that was needed.  Paul Robbins’ rink of Barry Willoughby, Bill Stewart and Nigel Satchell were never behind and finished 21-10. Mike Morris’ rink of Roger Hopkins, Tony Wright & Roy Radband were 13 -0 up after 8 ends and went on to win 21-13.

Brian Clarke and his team of Bernie May, Mick Conrad – Banks & Richard Barnett were yet again on the No 6 ditch rink and managed to keep their opponents to only six, one point ends, whilst winning with larger margins on the other 12 ends to make a 24-6 win.

The last rink to finish consisted of Roger Oliver, Brian Ray, John Hurren and skip Dave Lattimore. Again they were never behind in the match although the first half was tight between the two teams, but emerged 18 – 10 winners.

As expected the OBA were joyful at the end and our thanks go to Oxford City & County for their hospitality and first class “after match meal”. 
 
Oxfordshire BA v Berkshire BA (Middleton Cup) at Kidlington BC on 8 July, 2023

Oxfordshire entertained Berkshire in a crucial Middleton cup match at Kidlington bowls club. The match started in heavy rain with Oxfordshire getting off to a slow start, but the rain stopped and Oxfordshire came into the match. It was a very tight affair with Oxfordshire 7 up with 18 ends played across the green. Unfortunately the match was 21 ends not 18 and with every rink dropping shots Oxfordshire lost by 10 shots.

On rink 1 Sam Watts, David Leighfield , Kevin Alder and Shane Cooper lost 26-11, the score was not a true reflection of the match, the difference was the tremendous bowling from the Berkshire skip Patrick Hulbert.

Rink 2 was Mick Nash, Martin Shepherd, birthday boy Ian Henwood and Jason King who had another good game as did the rest of his rink to win 30-17. Next door Lee Young, Andy McIntyre, Mark Sykes and AJ Docherty were always a few behind and lost 16-13.

On rink 4 Keith Holloway, Colin Whitehead, Will Parker and Nick Rae Welsh looked a strong rink winning 25-15, Keith and Colin played well at the front as did Will and Mr dependable at the back.

Captain Mark Charlett along with Mick Jelfs, Mark Vaughan and Ian Snowdon dropped 6 shots on the last 2 ends to lose 25-22. This is Mark’s first season with the County and he has proved  to be an asset with consistent bowling throughout the campaign.

The final rink was Bernie May, Phil Gladden, Ray Gaskins and Nathan Lewis who struggled throughout losing 23-11.

The final score was 112- 122 to Berkshire.  Thanks to Will Campion who looked after the scoreboard, it was nice to have someone who could add up.

On a personal note I would like to say the players have been a pleasure to deal with, they have tried their best and on another day the result could have been different. Special mention to captain Mark Charlett and Vice Captain Nick Rae Welsh, a model of good time keeping, they along with manager Paul Demczak have put a lot of effort into the season.     Alex

 
Oxfordshire BA v Warwickshire County BA (Friendly) at Banbury Borough BC on 4 July, 2023
 
Despite a superbly prepared green at hosts Banbury Borough BC, the weather was a good leveller and the players bowled in light rain throughout. Mike Morris, on his home green skipped on Rink 1 with first-timer, Ian Gorman, Alan Carter and Tim Stevens, but finished two points behind on 16-18 to our visitors from Warwickshire. 
On rink 2, yo-yo skip Brian Clarke came back from a heavy defeat last week to achieve the highest winning rink 30-12 helped by the ever-improving Michel Grossnickel, reliable as ever - Percy Hickman and veteran Brian Ealey.
 
President Paul Demczak, supported by Richard Barnett, Tim Cox and Chris Lewis gave a 5 away on the 17th end on rink 3 and lost the next three ends to get beaten by 15-23 shots, but Brian Bloomfield's team on the neighbouring rink 4 got a good start with 7-0 after the first 5 ends before a mini recovery by their opponents, but this was short lived and the rink consisting of Percy Strange, Geoff Thompson, John Hurren plus Brian pushed on to win 24-18. 
 
The pens were won on Rink 5 by the visitors who only gave away 8 ends from the 21 played and achieved a 15-25 win, much to the discontent of David Wedge, John Stevens, Martin Oliver and skipper, "just in time" Paul Robbins. The final rink was won by 13 ends to 8 and a score of 19-11 for the Oxfordshire team consisting of Mike Jones, John Benfield, Ken Williams and Mike Petersen, showing that experience counts, particularly in the rain.
 
Overall a good win for Oxfordshire bowlers with a score of 119-107. The Boro caterers and other helpers put on yet another good meal and we all enjoyed the social element after play.
 
Oxfordshire BA v Surrey BA (HC League) at Cranleigh BC on 1 July, 2023
 
Manager Paul Demzcak had a difficult week with 16 dropouts for the Home Counties league match at Cranleigh against a Surrey side that needed maximum points. Despite the team changes the Oxfordshire side looked decent on paper and were not prepared to roll over.
Captain Nick Rae Welsh led the way as normal with Bradley Squires, an in form John Hurren and Brian Bloomfield winning 20-19 despite losing the last 4 ends.
Rink 2 was Nigel Siford, Richard Green at the front, positive bowling from Alex Fleming and really good skipping from Kevin Alder gave Oxfordshire a 20-18 win, despite dropping 5 on the last end. 
Rink 3 had a father and son front end of Mick and Paul Jelfs, there can't be many times that has happened. Phil Gladden and Craig Morphett made up the rink, but unfortunately could only pick up 7 singles and lost 21-7.
Rink 4 which was Mike Clarke, David Lattimore, Dave Tidball and David Leighfield dropped three 4's and a 3 to lose 25-12. Next door Bernie May, Tim Stevens, Martin Shepherd and Will Parker were really unlucky to only draw 17-17 after being 9-3 down. On rink 6 impressive bowling from Roy Radband helped Paul Costin, Paul Comley and Jason King, who has had a good season for Oxfordshire, to a 20-19 win.
The final score was Oxfordshire 96 Surrey 119, 7 points to Oxfordshire and 15 to Surrey, which wasn't enough to stop Berkshire reaching the final.   Alex 

 

Oxfordshire BA v Surrey BA (Friendly) at Marlden Manor BC on 25 June, 2023

Oxfordshire came up against a strong Surrey team at Marlden Manor Bowls Club for the annual friendly against Surrey BA and were well beaten by 150 -97 shots. Alex was missing for this game so three volunteers did all Alex's jobs and still couldn't do as well as the maestro. This report is shorter than usual because "someone" lost the cards with all the detail, but that wasn't a bad thing as 5 of the 6 rinks lost their games. 

Of special interest, was that President Paul Demczak's rink who had a very close match and only lost by 2 shots, but Brian Clark's rink suffered and allowed their opponents to clock up a cricket score for the home team, which included both a hot shot and a 7 point end, in their victory.

However, on a positive note, we had one winning rink, which was the team of Bernie May, Micky Conrad-Banks, John Hurren and Mike Morris as skip, who all played well. 

The host club made us very welcome and put on a seasonal salad to finish the day, which was hot and sunny.

Balcombe Trophy- Regional Finals at Bromley BC, Kent on Sunday, 25 June 2023

Oxfordshire made the long journey to Bromley for an early start against Surrey in the regional semi final. The squad was Ian Henwood, Nathan Lewis, Jason King and captain Mark Charlett on one rink, former Filkins player Lee Young, Mark Sykes, A J Docherty and Nick Rae Welsh on the other rink. The rest of the squad was reserve Mick Jelfs, match secretary Alex Fleming and manager Paul Demzcak.
Mark's rink was up against a firing skip, who actually split the jack in two on the 5th end. The score was 10-10 after 11 ends. The game remained close with  Oxfordshire winning 17-15.
Nick's rink got of to a flying start and were 17 shots up before dropping 15 on 5 ends to make for a nervous finish. However, 2 outstanding bowls from Mark Sykes on the 21st end calmed nerves and they finished 30-22 winners.
The afternoon final played against Buckinghamshire in extremely hot conditions on a glass like green proved more difficult.
Oxfordshire struggled to get going against excellent Buckinghamshire bowling, after 10 ends Marks rink was 10-6 down and Nick was 13-4 down. After 15 ends we where still 12 shots down, it didn't matter what we did we couldn't close the score up. Mark's rink finished up losing  17-19 and Nick's rink 12-20 to give a final score of 39- 29 to Buckinghamshire.
The effort and commitment from the squad can't be faulted, it just wasn't their afternoon.
All the best to Buckinghamshire at Leamington they were deserved winners.
It was an extremely long day with a 3 hour journey home, special mention to Mick Jelfs who travelled  300 miles round trip and gave his Sunday up to be the reserve. Alex 
 
Balcombe Trophy v Middlesex at Hendon Bowls Club on 18 June 2023

 

After yesterdays Middleton cup win Oxfordshire we were looking to finish of the weekend with a win at Hendon bowls club against Middlesex in the Balcombe trophy.

The game was played in hot, sticky conditions and unlike yesterdays classy performance it was about grinding a result out, which we did winning 49-33.

The rink of Lee Young, Shane Cooper, A J Docherty and Nick Rae Welsh lost the first 2 ends but after 10 ends were 16-4 up, a dropped 6 looked as if it might make life difficult, but fine bowling from Nick saw his rink finish 25-13 winners.

Next door Ian Henwood, Nathan Lewis, Jason King and captain Mark Charlett started well but dropped 11 shots over 3 ends and were behind till the 17th end when Mark drew 2 shots to give them the lead. They finished 24-20 winners.

The regional semi final and final will be played next Sunday, the venue has not been confirmed, but will probably be Bromley.  Alex

Oxfordshire BA v Buckinghamshire ( Middleton Cup) at Waddesdon BC on 17 June, 2023

After what can only be described as a disappointing competitive season so far, Oxfordshire travelled the short distance to Waddesdon to play their 2nd Middleton cup match against Buckinghamshire.
It is not very often watching a 6 rink game that you can say every player stood up to the test and played really well. Excellent front end bowling gave Oxfordshire the edge.
Rink one which was Sam Watts, David Leighfield, who showed he is back to his best, Kevin Alder and the ever impressive Shane Cooper were 13-6 down at the halfway stage on a tricky rink, then picked up a 3, 4 and a 5 to win 23-16 and set the tone for the day.
Rink 2 with Mick Jelfs and Mark Vaughan playing excellent bowls helped Ian Snowdon and captain Mark Charlett, who who was at his loudest and best, win the last 5 ends to draw 19-19. Rink 3 was Mick Nash, Chris Weller, Ian Henwood and Jason King who despite losing the last 4 ends won 19-17.
Next door Lee Young, another excellent lead, Andy McIntyre, Mark Sykes and A J Docherty all playing really well totally dominating John McGuinness's rink winning 22-10.
Bernie May, Phil Gladden, Ray Gaskins and Nathan Lewis dropped 8 shots on the 8th and 9th ends and that was the difference, losing 21-13.
On the final rink Keith Holloway, Colin Whitehead, Will Parker and Nick Rae Welsh, despite all playing well were unfortunate to lose a close game 25-22.
The final score was 118-108 to Oxfordshire, a well deserved win. It was nice to see good support for Oxfordshire; the team appreciated it.
I would also like to mention manager Paul Demzcak who spent most of yesterday on the phone dealing with drop outs. His job is a poisoned chalice, but with limited resources compared to some counties he works tirelessly for the County and deserved today's result. Alex 
 
Oxfordshire BA v Hampshire BA (Friendly) at Kidlington BC on 14 June, 2023

On a hot summers day Oxfordshire entertained Hampshire at Kidlington bowls green for their first visit for many years. We had visited them last season and been given a bit of a hiding and we were looking to get our own back.

After the trials of playing at Leicestershire last week it was nice to play on a good green.
On rink 1 Chris Lewis, Percy Strange, Chris Cox and Brian Bloomfield were trailing for 15 ends before 12 shots on 4 ends gave them the advantage and a narrow 23-20 win. Rink 2 was an equally close game with Roger Oliver, Nigel Satchel, Martin Oliver and Paul Robbins picking up a 5 on the 19th end to win 19-17.
On rink 3 on what looked a loaded rink, President Paul Demzcak along with Bernie May, Roy Radband and Les Days where behind after 8 ends, but went through the gears for an excellent 20-10 win. Next door impressive front end bowling from Roger Hopkins and Kenny Cooper gave Tim Stevens and Alex Fleming a stress free afternoon and the highest winning rink in a 27-8 win.
There was more good bowling on rink 5 with Mike Andrew, Geoff Smith, John Hurren and Brian Clarke winning 19-13.
The final rink was Richard Green, Michel Grossnickel, home club player Mike Peterson and Mike Morris. They picked up a 7 on the 16th end to take the lead by 2 shots, but disappointedly lost the remaining 5 ends to lose 24-18.
Kidlington laid on a good meal for us to finish a satisfying day. The final score was 126-92 to Oxfordshire.
Our next match is away to Surrey in a couple of weeks in what will be another hard match. Alex 
 
Oxfordshire BA v Leicestershire BA (Friendly) at Brush BC on 7 June 2023.

Oxfordshire travelled to the Brush Bowls Club to face old friends Leicestershire in high spirits after a good journey, easy to find club, good car parking, nice friendly club. That all disappeared when we walked onto the green, I am not sure how to describe it, testing, challenging, difficult maybe, but I think disappointing is a fairer description.

Neither side found it easy and very few players could say they had a good game. One player who had an exceptional game however was Oxfordshire President Paul Demzcak, he must be used to playing on rough greens. Paul was 8-1 down after 7 ends, but had a word with himself and lead his rink, Mike Clarke; who was making a welcome return after several years away, Tony Wright and David Lattimore to a 21-18 win.
Next door Geoff Smith, Ian Whelpton, Richard Barnett and Alex Fleming, who had lost the will to live went into the last end 2 down but dropped a 4 to lose 21-15.
Brian Clarke who had been highest winning rink for the last 2 games, but was highest loser on our first match evened things out by being highest loser again. Along with Mike Jones, Mickey Conrad Banks and Mike Peterson he lost 21-14. Brian will really have to find the middle ground.
Another serial winner who like everyone else struggled was Mike Morris who along with Roy Radband, Marc Boulton and Tim Stevens lost 17-13. John Hurren playing 3 to Paul Robbins had won 3 highest rinks in a row. He won again with Barry Willoughby and Bill Stewart, but this time by only 3 shots, 23-20.
The rink that won the game was Geoff Roynon, John Stevens, Ken Williams and Brian Bloomfield. Brian picked up 13 shots on 3 ends from running woods and ended up 29-7 winners.
The final score was 115-104 to Oxfordshire. But it was the green that was the winner, making it a frustrating afternoon for both sides.
But an away win is an away win, and after 4 wins we move onto Kidlington next week to face a strong Hampshire side in what will probably be one of our hardest fixtures.    Alex
 

Oxfordshire BA v Sussex BA (Middleton Cup) at Kidlington BC on 3 June 2023

Oxfordshire entertained Sussex in the opening Middleton cup match at Kidlington. The pre-match bacon rolls were most welcome and Kidlington were as always fine hosts.
Bernie May, Phil Gladden, Ray Gaskins and Nathan Lewis unfortunately dropped a 3 on the last end in a tight game to draw 17-17. Sam Watts, Colin Whitehead, Craig Morphett and Nick Rae Welsh picked up a 5 on the last end, but still lost 25-13.
Mick Jelfs, Mark Vaughan, Ian Snowdon and Mark Charlett went into the last end 1 down but holding a few before the Sussex skip had the luck on a running wood, the final score was 22-17 to Sussex. Keith Holloway, David Leighfield, Ian Henwood and Jason King dropped 2 5's and a 6 to loose 29-15.
The Banbury based rink of Lee Young, Will Campion, Mark Sykes and AJ Docherty played well throughout and won 26-17.
Martin Shepherd, Will Parker, Kevin Alder and Shane Cooper were Oxfordshire's stand out rink on Shane's favourite rink 6, winning 24-14.
The final score was a disappointing score of 124-112 to Sussex.    Alex 

 

Oxfordshire BA v Somerset BA (Friendly) at Burford BC on 30 May 2023

Oxfordshire entertained Somerset on a cold windy afternoon at Burford Bowls club.

Despite 8 dropouts Oxfordshire fielded a strong looking team. The green was interesting and the windy conditions made it testing for both sides.
Home club player Roger Hopkins lead for Brian Ealey, Roy Radband and skip Mike Morris and won 19-10. Martin Acock, Mark Boulton, Ken Williams and Alex Fleming were 12-2 up after 5 ends, but dropped 9 on the next 4 ends, but held on to win 21-18.
Nigel Satchel, Bill Stewart, John Hurren and Brian Clarke claimed the highest winning rink 27-10. It was 3 out of 3 highest rinks for John, the selectors will have to start looking at his rinks.
In the tightest match Percy Hickman who had a good game as lead, helped Tony Wright, Russell Box and Mike Andrew to a 16-15 win. It was Russell's first County match for Oxfordshire after moving over from the dark side of Warwickshire. Roger Oliver, Tony Smith, Mike Peterson and the ever dependable Brian Bloomfield were always ahead winning 22-12.
In all 3 friendly games we have played we have only lost on one rink. The rink this time was President Paul Demczak's, who had new grandfather Bernie May, David Wedge and Tim Stevens; they lost 22-17.
Burford put on a really good meal as always. Russell Box was presented with his colts badge and Brian Clarke was presented with a long overdue full badge.        Alex. 

 

Oxfordshire BA v Berkshire BA (HC League) at Kidlington BC on 27 May 2023

Oxfordshire entertained Berkshire at Kidlington bowls club for their second Home Counties league match.

Rink 1 which was Mick Jelfs, Alex Fleming, Ian Henwood who played exceptionally well thought-out and Mark Charlett unfortunately dropped a 5 on the 20th end but still won 27-15. Bernie May, Jim Feely, Phil Gladden and Jason King where always behind loosing 18-13.
On rink 3 Richard Green, Mark Vaughan, Chris Weller and Craig Morphett making a welcome return after injury played well throughout winning 25-12.
Sam Watts, Brian Clarke, Brian Bloomfield and AJ Docherty picked up a 5 on the 20th end but still lost 20-15. Roy Radband, Dave Tidball, Will Parker and Kevin Alder where only 2 shots down after 16 ends but fell away to loose 23-14. On rink 6 Nigel Siford, David Lattimore, Martin Shepherd and Shane Cooper always struggled loosing 22-9.
The final score was a 110-102 win for Berkshire.
Next Saturday the Middleton cup starts with a home fixture against Sussex.
 
Oxfordshire BA v Bedfordshire (Friendly) at Linslade BC, Leighton Buzzard on 23 May, 2023
 
Oxfordshire travelled to the Linslade Bowls Club to face Bedfordshire. The result was a comprehensive victory for Oxfordshire by 146-97 shots.
On rink 1 Barry Willoughby, David Wedge, Tim Stevens and Brian Bloomfield played steady throughout and won 20-13. Next door on rink 2, Roger Hopkins and Mark Boulton where both playing their first games for the County and along with Keith Dunsby and Alex Fleming won 31-16.
The 2 President's played against each other on rink 3, Paul Demzcak assisted by Chris Lewis, John Benfield and Roy Radband held on to win 22-19.
Rink 4 looked loaded and Bernie May, Tony Wright, John Hurren and Brian Clarke duly obliged winning 31-15 and getting the highest winning rink.
Roger Oliver, Michel Grossnickel, Richard Barnett and David Lattimore played well winning 28-15.
We don't like to whitewash sides and it was left to Mike Jones, Bill Stewart, Les Days and Chris Cox to provide some consolation for Bedfordshire losing 19-14.
After an excellent meal Mark Boulton and Roger Hopkins received their colts badges and County Treasurer John Hurren received his 50 game badge.
Alex 
 
Oxfordshire BA v Sussex BA (HC League) at Worthing Pavilions on 20 May 2023

Oxfordshire travelled to Worthing for their opening Home Counties league fixture of the season against Sussex. As last year's finalists, we were hoping for a good start, unfortunately things didn’t go to plan.

Rink 1 of Chris Lewis, Simon Hastings, Chris Weller and Ray Gaskins struggled throughout losing 32-7. On the next rink Brandon King, Colin Pollard, Ian Snowdon and Mark Charlett were 15-13 up after 17 ends, but a dropped 6 and 3 on the next 2 ends ended their hopes, losing 23-16. Rink 3 was an interesting game; Mark Vaughan, Sammy Timms, Ian Henwood and Nick Rae Welsh were 16-3 down after 8 ends, shook themselves down and won 11 of the remaining 13 ends but still narrowly lost 20-18.

Shane Cooper's rink of Nigel Siford, David Lattimore and Martin Shepherd were 14 shots up after 15 ends, but took their foot off the pedal to let Sussex get within 2 shots, but a 5 on the last end gave Shane's rink a 28-21 win. Another winning rink was rink 5 with veteran Bernie May who had earlier been on a tour of Worthing’s bowling greens, Phil Gladden and Nathan Lewis, in a tight game they picked up 3 on the last end to win 23-21.

Brian Bloomfield, Alex Fleming, David Leighfield and Kevin Alder where 17-2 down after 11 ends, but a better second half saw them lose 22-14.

The overall score was Sussex 139, Oxfordshire 106. Manager Paul Demczak will be hoping his side bounce back next Saturday when we entertain Berkshire at Kidlington bowls club.

 
Oxfordshire BA v Northamptonshire BA (Friendly) at Banbury Borough BC on 16 May, 2023
 
Oxfordshire entertained Northamptonshire at Banbury Borough for the first mid-week friendly fixture of the season.
On rink 1  Oxfordshire came out 17-11 winners in a tight game, the rink was Allan Carter, Tim Cox, Tim Stevens and Mike Morris. On the next rink Bernie May, Allan Murdoch on his County debut, Martin Acock and Alex Fleming were always in control winning 30-15.
Rink 3 was a close game with John Benfield, Mickey Conrad Banks, Mike Peterson and Paul Demzcak scraping home 16-15.
Rink 4 was another big winning rink, Mike Jones, Ian Whelpton, John Hurren and Keith Buckle on his home green picked up a 5 and 6 to win 31-16 and claimed the highest rink on countback.
Barry Willoughby, Brian Ray, Martin Oliver and Brian Clarke somehow managed to be Oxfordshire's only losing rink: 21-20.
On rink 6 Gerald Mayle another player on his debut,  Michel Grossnickel, Richard Barnett and Chris Lewis picked up a 5 on the last end to win 20-17.
The overall score was 134-95 to Oxfordshire. The day finished with Bob Sharpe and his team providing a wonderful meal.    Alex 
 

Oxfordshire BA v Wiltshire BA (Middleton cup trial at Wootton Bassett Bowls Club) on 13 May 2023

Oxfordshire travelled to Royal Wootton Bassett Bowls Club to play a full strength Wiltshire side in their 2nd and final Middleton cup trial match.

On rink, 1 Bradley Squires, Mark Vaughan, Andy McIntyre and Mark Sykes always struggled, 15 dropped shots on the last 3 ends didn't help in a 31-8 defeat.
Rink 2 was Mick Nash, Sam Watts, Ian Snowdon and Nick Rae Welsh. They were always half a dozen shots behind losing 21-16. Nigel Siford, Sammy Timms, Will Parker and Kevin Alder were 19-1 down after 10 ends and finished losing 28-11.
Rink 4 which was Bernie May, Keith Holloway, Phil Gladden and Colin Whitehead reversed the trend winning 24-12.
On rink 5, Mick Jelfs, David Tidball, Chris Weller and Shane Cooper were 22-2 up at 13 ends. They dropped 23 on the remaining ends, including an 8 on the last end but held on for a 28-25 win. The final rink of Lee Young, Brian Bloomfield, Martin Shepherd and AJ Docherty were 9-9 after 8 ends, then dropped a 7 but came back to only lose by 1 shot: 24-23.
The green bowled well, so no complaints. Wiltshire look a good outfit and we wish them well in their campaign.
Alex
 

First Fixture of the 2023 Season

Oxfordshire BA v Gloucester BA ( Middleton Cup trial at Kidlington BC on Saturday, 6 May 2023

Oxfordshire started their outdoor campaign with the traditional Middleton cup trial match against a very strong Gloucestershire side. The match was played in difficult conditions with heavy rain throughout. Captain Mark Charlett on rink 1 with Mick Nash, Mark Vaughan and Ian Henwood played well but dropped 6 on the last 2 ends to lose by 5.
On rink 2, Sam Watts, Colin Whitehead, Martin Shepherd and the ever dependable Nick Rae Welsh after dropping a 6, won the last end to draw 20-20.
On rink 3, the strong front end of Bradley Squires and Keith Holloway helped Mark Sykes and Jason King to a 22-15 win, 14 shots on the last 5 ends certainly helped.
On rink 4, Lee Young, Brian Bloomfield, Will Campion and AJ Docherty picked up 8 on the last 4 ends to win 20-11. Rink 5 was Mick Jelfs, Paul Comley, Will Parker and Kevin Alder, who did well to only lose 16-15 against a strong rink. Bernie May, David Leighfield on rink 6 supported the impressive Phil Gladden and Shane Cooper to an 18-10 win. 
The final score was 109-91, an 18 shot win. It was an encouraging start to the season and a worthwhile exercise for manager Paul Demzcak, next week we visit Wiltshire for another trial match.
Full credit to both sides for playing in such difficult conditions and good luck to Gloucestershire in their campaign. Alex 

 

Summary of the 2022 season

We played 16 friendly matches, winning 11 and losing 5. The only game we lost by more than a handful of shots was against the OWBA, hopefully we can address that next season. Hertfordshire couldn’t get a side against us and have dropped us from their fixture list for next season. Surrey only managed to get 4 rinks to visit us. We are lucky in having a nucleus of players who are happy to play away matches and had a full side for every match. Saying that drop outs have been a problem this season, several hours before the matches start. We had 20 players drop out of the matches at Hampshire and Gloucestershire alone, this is something that the selection committee will have to look at and try to address.

We have used 55 players in the friendly matches this season, 14 have skipped which is a positive. We had 10 new players put their names down to play. Several of them have to take time off work to play and I think they should be encouraged, it has freshened the side up.

From a selection point of view, it should be remembered that we are trying to put out teams that will win matches as well as have an enjoyable afternoon. I think it has been noticeable how good the team spirit has been this season.

As far as the competitive teams go, Paul used 44 players and I thought he did a difficult job well. The Middleton cup was disappointing, but we did well in the Home Counties, reaching the final and also reaching the area  finals day of the Balcombe. It was really only a couple of bad ends that cost us both matches, fine margins.

There was a lot of criticism going around after the matches, mainly from people who hadn’t seen the team play. Paul’s hands are tied by who is available, we are a small county playing bigger counties. Paul spent many hours with his captain Mark Charlett on team selection and I felt on the whole they got most things right. Who would think that we would beat Surrey by 50 shots. Mark was a good choice as captain and Nick Rae Welsh was an excellent vice captain. I felt the team played really well in the Home Counties and Balcombe and just had a collective bad day in the Middleton.

I would like to thank the clubs that hosted our matches, it was really noticeable how much effort the Oxfordshire clubs put into hosting our matches. I would like to thank all the players who have supported me by coming into the side at short notice and in particular Brian Bloomfield. Every time someone drops out we speak to each other to discuss who comes in and positional changes, there have been a lot of phone calls.

I thought it was an enjoyable season and the future looks promising.

Hope to see you all next season.  Alex 

 

 

Oxfordshire BA v Worcestershire BA  - Friendly at Evesham B C on Wed, 14 September 2022.

Oxfordshire travelled to Evesham to play Worcestershire on a lovely sunny day. Evesham have a nice new clubhouse and a very sporting green.

 

David Lattimore and Martin Acock both skipped for the first time for the County and neither had the luck going their way. David along with Roger Oliver, Tony Smith and Richard Barnett lost 26-14. Mike Jones, Tim Cox, Allan Wase and Martin Acock where only 3 down at the halfway point, but fell away to loose 23-10. Mick Morris a serial highest rink winner was highest loser this time, along with Bill Stewart, Michel Grossnickel and Ken Williams, loosing 29-11. Dropping 8 shots on the last 2 ends didn't help.
The President Paul Demczak had what the bookies thought looked the strongest rink. Along with Percy Hickman, Allan Ley and Tim Stevens, they stumbled near the finishing line dropping 6 on the last 2 ends to tie 20-20.
Fortunately we did have 2 winning rinks. Barry Willoughby, Kenny Cooper having probably his best game for the County, Les Days and the ever dependable Brian Clarke as skip, despite dropping a 3 and a 5 won 24-14.
The stand out rink was Bernie May, Nigel Satchel, Roy Radband and Alex Fleming who found the outside green to their liking winning 38-9. Every rink member having a great game. Unfortunately the final score was 121-116 to Worcestershire.
After the match we squeezed into the clubhouse for an enjoyable meal. After 17 years of playing for the County, match secretary Alex Fleming was presented with his 100 game badge.
So finished what has been an enjoyable season for the midweek friendly side. We have visited some interesting venues. It has been noticeable how well the home clubs have looked after us. Hopefully everyone who has played enjoyed themselves.
 
 
 
 
Oxfordshire BA v Berkshire BA  - Friendly at Didcot B C on Wed, 7 September 2022.
 
Oxfordshire travelled the short distance to Didcot to play neighbours Berkshire in what promised to be a hard match.
 

5 of the 6 rinks were close, the exception being the President's rink of Mike Andrew, David Byers, Mike Peterson and Paul Demzak who picked up 10 shots on the last 3 ends to win 23-12.

Mike Jones, Percy Strange, Brian Ray and Mike Morris lost 23-19. Brian Ealey, Kenny Cooper, Ken Williams and Richard Barnett lost 20-13. Martin Acock, Michel Grossnickel, Allan Wase and Chris Cox where 14-7 up after 11 ends, but only picked up 2 more shots to lose 23-16. In a low scoring game Roy Radband, Chris Lewis, Percy Hickman and Alex Fleming won 13-12, 17 ends ended up as single shots. Brian Bloomfield who had John Stevens, Allan Ley and John Hurren with him won the last 4 ends to win 20-17.
The final result was a disappointing 104-107 loss in what was a winnable game. Didcot provided a nice meal and Brian Ealey was presented with his 100 game badge.    Alex
 
Oxfordshire BA v Gloucestershire BA  - Friendly at Bishops Cleave B C on Wed, 31 August 2022

 

Oxfordshire travelled to Bishop Cleeve, a new club for most of us to play our near neighbors Gloucestershire. Despite 8 drop outs, Oxfordshire still fielded a very strong side with Tim Stevens and Percy Hickman skipping for the first time for the County 

On rink one great front end bowling from Chris Lewis and Allan Ley gave Martin Acock and Alex Fleming an easy afternoon and another highest winning rink for the skip winning 29-11. Rink 2 was Barry Willoughby, Kenny Cooper, Allan Wase and never say die Brian Bloomfield picked up 6 shots on the last 2 ends to win 19-16, the only time they led in the match.
Rink 3 was Terry Gripe, Keith Dunsby, Roy Radband and President Paul Demzak who were 20-4 up at the halfway stage, but relaxed in the second half to win 26-14. Rink 4 was John Hurren, Tony Wright, Richard Barnett and Tim Stevens, they dropped a 7 on the 17th end to loose 24-17. Tim was always there or thereabouts  on his first game as skip, but one bad end cost him. On rink 5, Roger Oliver, Percy Strange, Les Days and Percy Hickman stopped playing after 13 ends when they where 15-6 up and somehow lost 25-16. On rink 6, Tony Smith, Bill Stewart, Brian Ray and Brian Clarke after a tight game dropped 4 on the last end to loose 22-19.
The final score was a 126-112 win to Oxfordshire. Bishop Cleeve was a nice venue and it was another enjoyable away day for Oxfordshire.     Alex 

 

Oxfordshie BA v Buckinghamshire BA - Friendly at Banbury Borough B C on Tuesday, 16 August 2022

 

Oxfordshire entertained Buckinghamshire at Banbury Borough Bowls Club with heavy rain forecast for late afternoon. Rink one skipped by outside rink specialist Brian Clarke and ably assisted by Roger Oliver, Michel Grossnickel and Keith Dunsby won 28-11 to claim the highest winning rink. This was a first for Michel: well done.

Rink 2 was George Moon on a rare outing for the county, Tim Cox, David Lattimore and Mick Morris and despite another good performance from Tim, lost 18-15, a rare defeat for Mick.
On the next rink Chris Lewis, Allan Ley, Alex Fleming and Brian Bloomfield played steady throughout and picked up an important 4 on the last end to win 22-15. On rink 4 Paul Demzak skipped Percy Strange, Geoff Roynon and Tim Stevens to a narrow but important 20-19 win.
Rink 5 which was Barry Willoughby, Ian Whelpton, Ken Williams and Keith Buckle came up against a very strong rink to lose 32-14. Luck of the draw, we have all been there!
On rink 6 Allan Hunt, Nigel Satchel, John Hurren and Mike Peterson, despite a good start, lost 21-19, this is the second consecutive match Mike has fallen short by 2.
The promised rain did arrive, but only Mick Morris's rink failed to complete all the ends. Buckinghamshire could have done with an extra end as the match finished 118-116 in Oxfordshire's favour.
Banbury Borough are famous for their excellent meals and today's was another good one. Borough like all the clubs that host our home matches put a lot of work into the day from organising the car parking, providing an excellent green to putting on a good meal.
We have a break for a week before we travel to Bishop Cleeve to face Gloucestershire.  Alex

 

Oxfordshire B A v Bristol C & C BA - Friendly at Witney Town BC, on Tuesday, 9 August 2022

 

Oxfordshire entertained City and County of Bristol at a hot Witney Town bowls club. Rink 1 of Mike Jones, Tony Wright, Nigel Satchell and Brian Clarke won a close game 24-21. Rink 2 of Chris Lewis, John Benfield, Tim Stevens and President Paul Demczak on his home green and favourite rink always looked too strong for their opposition and won 26-13. Rink 3 which was Barry Willoughby, Allan Ley, Keith Dunsby and Alex Fleming struggled on a difficult green against opposition who found it from the first wood and where as President Paul kindly pointed out, the highest losers. Fortunately they took a 26-9 defeat with good grace.

On the next rink Percy Strange, Bill Stewart, Richard Barnett and Mike Peterson, despite picking up a 7 on the 6th end, quietly lost 22-24.

Rink 5 of Brian Ealey, John McGeough, John Hurren and Keith Buckle put in a solid shift to win 23-11. The loaded rink on the outside rink was Roger Oliver, Geoff Roynon, Roy Radband and Mike Morris only 3 shots up after 11 ends went through the gears to win 25-9 and add another highest winning rink mug to Mike's growing collection.

The meal afterwards provided by cordon bleu chef Brian Bloomfield and his team was excellent. John Benfield of Chipping Norton Bowls Club was presented with his 100 game badge. Witney Town as always were the perfect hosts and both sides enjoyed their visit to the club.  Alex

 

Oxfordshire B A v Isle of Wight BA - Friendly at Three Mile Cross BC, Reading on Wed, 27 July 2022 

 

A depleted Oxfordshire side travelled to Three Mile Cross in Reading to play the Isle of Wight. The players that did make the journey where pleased with the new large changing room, compared to the cupboard we have previously changed in.

After winning the previous day against Wiltshire,  Oxfordshire were looking for another win. On rink one Mike Andrew, Ian Whelpton, Chris Cox and Brian Bloomfield shot out of the blocks, 20 up after 7 ends. They kept their foot on the gas winning by a whopping 42-9 shots, a long journey home for the losing rink.

David Byers, Michel Grossnickel, Bill Stewart and Keith Buckle where 6 down after 7 ends and kept that margin throughout to loose 17-11. Rink 3 was Tim Cox, Alan Ley, Roy Radband and Alex Fleming. After a slow start, a Tim Cox and Alan Ley masterclass provided Oxfordshire with a second winning rink of 24-12. Bernie May, Mickey Conrad Banks, Gordon Hooker and President Paul Demczak were feeling charitable and lost the last 4 ends to finish 20-17 down.

On rink 5, Mike Jones, Geoff Smith, John Hurren and Ken Williams 29-6 down at one stage had a mini recovery, but still lost 30-13, a bad day at the office. The remaining rink of Nigel Satchell, Roger Oliver, Allan Wase and Brian Clarke were 12 shots down after 15 ends, but a change of jack length cut the deficit to 16-19.

Despite only winning on 2 rinks, Oxfordshire had a comfortable 123-107 win, thanks mainly to rink one winning by 33 shots. At the start of the match the Isle of Wight team found out that their 7 o’clock ferry home had been rescheduled for 9 o’clock, hopefully they got home sometime, safely. Three Mile Cross as always where perfect hosts and it was another enjoyable Oxfordshire away day.   Alex

 

Oxfordshire B A v Wiltshire - Friendly at Burford Town BC on Tuesday, 26 July 2022 

Oxfordshire entertained Wiltshire at the Burford Town green on a really hot day. It promised to be a close contest against our near neighbours and so it proved.

Rink 1 of Allan Hunt, Michel Grossnickel, home club player John Hurren and Brian Bloomfield kept it tight for 9 ends, only trailing by 1 shot, then the wheels came off, dropping 21 shots without reply to lose 30-11. On the next rink Roy Radband, Keith Dunsby, Keith Buckle and Brian Clarke always had the edge winning 25-19.

Rink 3 was Jamie MacDonogh, Allan Ley, late substitute Chris Cox and Paul Demczak, despite a late flurry from Wiltshire they always had the edge winning 20-17.

Nigel Satchell, Bill Stewart, Mike Peterson and Paul Robbins were 7-5 down after 5 ends, but picked up 11 shots on the next 3. They never looked in danger after that and won 26-19.   Rink 5 which was the excellent Bradley Squires, Kenny Cooper, David Lattimore and Mike Morris who all had really good games and proved the pre match predictions of highest winning rink correct; winning 26-10. The final rink of Percy Hickman, Tim Cox, Richard Barnett and Alex Fleming played a very tight game and despite some fine lead bowling from Percy Hickman lost 16-12. The Wiltshire skip who is a Middleton cup player always had that little bit extra. The final score was 120-111 in Oxfordshire’s favour.

The day finished with an excellent meal from Burford, Jamie MacDonogh was awarded his colts badge and Roy Radband his 50 game badge. Well done to both.

Burford did a really impressive job hosting the match, the car parking was well organised, the green bowled well and the food was excellent and to prove Wiltshire enjoyed the day they have already requested to play there in 2024.

Alex

 
Balcombe Trophy - Regional semi-final v Berkshire BA, played at Ruislip on 17 July 2022.
 
After the disappointment of losing to Middlesex in the Home Counties final by 3 shots, Oxfordshire travelled to Ladygate Bowls Club in Ruislip to face a strong Berkshire side in the Balcombe trophy area semi final.
Rink 1 was Ian Henwood, Nathan Lewis, Jason King and Mark Charlett, rink 2 was Lee Young, Shane Cooper, AJ Docherty and Nick Rae Welsh.
Nick's rink played well throughout, but dropped a crucial 5 on the 16th end. They finished up winning 24-18. Nick has had an outstanding season for the County.
Mark's rink where behind throughout, but kept battling. Unfortunately just as we went 1 shot up overall, they dropped a 6 on the 19th end and they finished up losing 27-15.
The overall score was 45-39 to Berkshire. Just like the previous day there was a lot of what ifs.
From my point of view as match secretary we have played well in both the Balcombe and the Home Counties and on another day could have won both. The players have been a pleasure to work with and have made my job easier.
It is Paul Demczak's first season in charge and he will have learned a lot. Overall it should be viewed as a good competitive season.          Alex 

 

Oxfordshire BA v  Middlesex BA  played Saturday July 16th at Chesham Bowls Club.  Home Counties FINAL.

After three outstanding performances in the Home Counties league to reach the Final we fell at the last hurdle to lose by three shots.

Rink 1 saw Percy Hickman, Brian Clarke, Martin Shepherd and skip Kevin Alder get away to be behind 13-3 after 11 ends, but steady progress from his rink saw them over the line after 21 ends to win 21-15.

Rink 2  Bernie May, Jim Feeley, Phil Gladden and Nathan Lewis who had been outstanding in all the previous games got away to a good start leading 10-3 after 9 ends and were still in the lead after 16 ends 15-10. Some fortunate bowling by the opposition  got them the shots and a win 22-19.

Rink 3 John Hurren, Dave Tidball, Chris Weller and skip Shane Cooper fought back after being behind 10-1 after 7 ends it was close with both sides getting shots, so after 16 ends, Shane was leading 18-17 then the Oxon rink took control with 12 shots to add over the remaining ends so won 30-17

Rink 4 Mick Jelfs, Simon Hastings, Ian Henwood and skip Nick Rae-Welsh produced steady bowling throughout the match to win 17-14

Rink 5 Paul Costin, Ted Ealey, Jason King and skip Mark Charlett were struggling throughout the match and were 19-8 down after 12 ends. They pulled back shots over the remaining ends to lose 25-17.

Rink 6 Paul Jelfs, Brian Bloomfield, Will Parker and A J Docherty were in contention up to end 10,  being 10-11 behind, after 15 ends behind  17-15, then Middlesex with some extreme bowling won the next 7 ends winning 29-15.

So an unfortunate end to the Home Counties campaign, getting to the Final but then losing by 3 Shots. Lessons learned which will make us stronger next season.   Paul D.

 

The OBA v BOL - Friendly match at witney Town BC on 12 July 2022

 

The OBA entertained Bowls Oxfordshire ladies on a very sticky day at Witney Town bowls club. It was a bad day for the men who managed to loose on 4 rinks. On rink one Michel Grossnickel, Tim Cox, Ken Williams and Richard Barnett, despite picking up 9 on the last 3 ends lost to the BOL President Pat Ray 22-26. The OBA President Paul Demzak with Roger Oliver, Keith Dunsby and John Hurren 16-4 up after 13 ends went to pieces loosing 20-19, dropping 1 on the last end to Pauline Conrad-Banks rink.

Rink 3 was David Wedge, new player Geoff Roynon, Roy Radband and Mick Morris who drew 14-14 against Janette Berry's rink.
Bill Stewart, Ian Whelpton, Martin Oliver and Paul Robbins had a bad day at the office loosing 24-12 to Wendy Cross's rink. Brian Ealey, Mick Conrad-Banks, Brian Ray and Brian Clarke dropped 8 shots on the last 4 ends to loose 23-19 against Caroline Bloomfield's rink.
The only bright spot was rink 5 where Barry Willoughby, Nigel Satchel, Tim Stevens and Alex Fleming picked up 11 shots on the last 5 ends to win 21-15 against Rosemary Phelps's rink, this was despite some excellent lead bowling from Margaret Morris.
The final score was a deserved 122-107 win for the ladies.
The highlight of the day for the men was the excellent meal put on by Brian Bloomfield and his team. Geoff Roynon was awarded his colts badge at the end of the meal.
A bad day for the men, but hopefully we have a good weekend to look forward to, with the Home Counties final on Saturday at Chesham and the Balcombe trophy area finals at Ruislip.
Alex 

 

Oxfordshire BA v Sussex BA – Balcombe Trophy at Leatherhead on 10 July 2022

On a sweltering hot day, Oxfordshire travelled to Leatherhead to play Sussex in the Balcombe trophy. This was the third competitive game between the two counties. Sussex beat us in the Middleton cup, but we won the Home Counties match.

Captain Mark Charlett had an all Headington rink, containing Ian Henwood, Nathan Lewis and Jason King. The other rink was Lee Young, Shane Cooper, AJ Docherty and Nick Rae Welsh.
Both rinks got off to flyers and were both 8-1 up after 5 ends and kept it tight for the rest of the match. Ian Henwood with some great lead bowling set the tone on Mark's rink and despite a late rally from Sussex won 14-12.
Nick Rae Welsh had a relatively easy afternoon directing traffic on his rink, the teams engine Shane Cooper and A J Docherty did the hard work exceptionally well and finished up winning 21-14.
We have an extremely busy weekend next week with the Home Counties final at Chesham on Saturday and the Balcombe regional finals at Ladygate bowls club in Ruislip on Sunday. Manager Paul Demczak and his team would appreciate your support.
I can't finish the report without thanking Leatherhead bowls club for hosting today's match. They have a really nice club and made us extremely welcome with bacon rolls on arrival and burgers after the game, they also supplied bottles of water, much needed in the heat.

 

Oxfordshire BA v Warwickshire BA – Friendly in Coventry on 5 July 2022

A warm sunny day greeted the Oxfordshire Bowlers at the Three Shires Bowling Club at Coventry and the sun kept shining as Oxfordshire beat a good Warwickshire team by 136-110 with 4 winning rinks from the six played. The green was slick to the eye, but a little pushier than expected.

Rink 1 had Mike Jones, Tim Cox, Les Days and Ken Williams and despite losing the first three ends, they held a 12-7 lead after 11 ends, but unfortunately the wheels fell off and they won only one more end resulting in a loss of 15 -24.  Mike Morris supported by Roger Oliver, Bill Stewart and John Hurren on rink 2, won 14 of the 21 ends with a margin of 24-14 for a win.

President Paul Demczak lead by example and with Bernie May, Tim Stevens (on his debut) and Keith Buckle had a comfortable win despite dropping 4 on the last end, to win 27-21. Rink 4 hosted Brian Ealey, Alan Ley, Martin Oliver and Mike Andrew who battled hard and kept the Warwickshire quartet from getting too far away, but a 5 on the 19th end proved the deciding factor for Warwickshire to triumph by 17- 21.

The two end rinks saw our best scores and with a deficit of 3-9 down after 7 ends, the team of Nigel Satchell, John McGeough, Alan Wase & Brian Bloomfield had a powerful finish, winning each of the last 8 ends for a 24-13 victory. Not to be deprived for the highest rink, the team of Barry Willoughby, John Stevens, Roy Radband and Brian Clarke went one better with a respectable 29- 17 win.

 

Oxfordshire BA v Surrey BA -HCBA League - Saturday, 2 July 2022

Oxfordshire entertained Surrey at Kidlington in the final Home Counties league match. It was a winner takes all situation with the winner going through to the final.

Team manager Paul Demzak asked for a strong start from his side. Skip Nathan Lewis took him at his word being 18-5 up after 6 ends. His rink of Bernie May, the superb Jim Feeley and Phil Gladden carried on the good work to win 36-15, to set the trend for the day.
Paul Jelfs, Chris Weller, Will Parker and AJ Docherty's only 1 up after 16 ends won the last 5 to finish 29-15. Paul Costin, Tim Ealey, Ian Henwood and Jason King narrowly lost 21-20. Percy Hickman, Brian Clarke, Martin Shepherd and Kevin Alder dropped 2 on the last end to loose 18-16. Harvey Alder, David Tidball, Brian Bloomfield and Shane Cooper kept it tight to loose 22-17.
The ever dependable Captain Nick Rae Welsh assisted by Mick Jelfs, Simon Hastings and Colin Hastings were last to finish in heavy rain with a great 36-13 win.
The final score was 154-104 to Oxfordshire and the 16 points takes us to the final against either Kent or Middlesex on July 16th, venue to be decided.
This was a seriously good team performance, where every player can be pleased with their performance. It was a deserved result for the hard work put in by team manager Paul Demzak.

 

Oxfordshire BA v Surrey BA - friendly match at Kidlington BC - Tuesday 28 June 2022

Oxfordshire entertained Surrey at Kidlington bowls club. Surprisingly Surrey could only get 4 rinks, but the players that did travel all looked pretty good.

On rink 1, Barry Willoughby, Ian Whelpton, Brian Clarke and Paul Robbins recovered from a slow start to be level 14-14 after 18 ends, but dropped a 4 on the 19th end to lose 20-15.
Bernie May, Nigel Satchel, David Lattimore and President Paul Demzak were coasting at the halfway stage but dropped shots regularly in the second half to scrape home 21-19.
Roy Radband, David Byers, Mike Peterson and Mike Morris, who is having an excellent season for the County led all the way to have the highest winning rink 19-13.
The final rink of Mike Andrew, Michel Grossnickel, John Hurren and home club skip Chris Cox struggled throughout and despite a late flurry lost 23-13.
After the dinner, President Paul Demczak awarded the popular Barry Willoughby his 100 game badge, a fine achievement.
Kidlington as always where the perfect hosts and are hosting us again on Saturday when our Home Counties league side face Surrey again. It is a winner takes all match with the winner going through to the final. The match starts at 11 o'clock and hopefully Oxfordshire will have a large support for such an important match.
Alex 

 

Oxfordshire BA v Herefordshire BA - friendly match at Eastnor Castle BC - Tuesday 21 June 2022

After a disappointing week, Oxfordshire travelled to agricultural Herefordshire to play on a very testing green at the picturesque Eastnor green.

On rink 1 Terry Gripe, Roger Oliver, Ken Williams and Brian Bloomfield picked up 10 on the last 4 ends to win 27-24. On the next rink Mike Andrew, Bill Stewart, Alex Fleming and Brian Clarke started slowly, but a 6 on the 7th end kick-started them to a 21-13 win and the highest winning rink. The President Paul Demczak along with Allan Hunt, David Wedge and David Lattimore finished strongly to win 19-15 after being 14-9 down after 15 ends.

Chris Lewis, John Benfield, Allan Wase and Mike Morris picked up 8 shots on the last 4 ends to win 23-19. Mike Jones, Geoff Thompson, Brian Ray and Paul Robbins led throughout and finished 27-21 winners.

On the outside rink 6, Keith Buckle on his debut as skip for the County, assisted by Roy Radband, John Stevens and Martin Oliver played a very close game to lose 16-14. The final score was 131-108 in Oxfordshire’s favour.

The Eastnor ladies put on a splendid meal to finish the day. Allan Wase was presented with his 50 game badge. David Holloway of Herefordshire was presented with his 500 game badge. It was a very enjoyable day out in the countryside for Oxfordshire.

Alex

Oxfordshire BA v Sussex BA - Middleton Cup Preliminary round- Sat, 18 June, 2022

Oxfordshire travelled to Croydon to play Sussex in the Middleton Cup with high hopes after beating them in the Home Counties match.

Before the start of the match President Paul Demczak presented his captain Mark Charlett with his 200 game badge. This is a remarkable achievement considering the vast majority, if not all, will have been either Middleton or Home Counties matches.

The day very quickly went downhill for Mark and his rink of Mick Nash, Paul Comley and Colin Whitehead. The loosing score of 33-4 was probably one of Marks worst days in an Oxfordshire shirt. Jason King who had Bradley Squires, David Leighfield and Craig Morphett with him only 9-8 down after 10 ends;  lost 27-11.

AJ Docherty with Joe Justin, Paul Mabbutt and Ray Gaskins dropped a 4 on the last end to lose 16-12. Jamie MacDonogher, Keith Holloway, Will Campion and Kevin Alder were 7-7 after 8 ends in a tight match, quickly dropped 12 over the next 4 ends to loose 25-14.

It was not quite all bad news as Sam Watts, Remy Clanfield, Nathan Lewis and the ever dependable Nick Rae Welsh, who picked up 1 on the last end to win 15-14. The final rink of Adie Kemish, Lee Young, Ian Henwood and skip Shane Cooper who was probably the counties stand out player won 16-12.

The final score was a deserved 127-72 to Sussex, they played some good bowls and we wish them well in the rest of the competition.

We would like to thank Croydon for hosting the game, the rolls before the game were much appreciated.

To finish a disappointing day, the M25 was its normal slow self.      Alex

............................................................................................................................................................................................................

Oxfordshire BA v Hampshire BA, Friendly played at Basingstoke Town BC on 15 June, 2022

Oxfordshire travelled to Basingstoke Town bowls club to face a strong Hampshire side. The last time the fixture had taken place Oxford United played Liverpool in the old Division one on the same day.

With 12 withdrawals from the original squad, match secretary Brian Bloomfield should be congratulated on actually getting a side together.

The players that did play all did their best, but the combination of a very hot day, a difficult green and exceptional play from a Hampshire side which had the luxury of Middleton cup players, was too much.

We lost on all 6 rinks, 134-93. David Byers, Mike Conrad-Banks, Roy Radband and Brian Bloomfield dropped a 2 on the last end to narrowly lose 20-17.

The rink of Nigel Satchell, John Stevens, Allan Ley and Mike Andrew came back from 13-2 down to level at 13-13, before fading away to a 19-16 defeat. The President’s rink 20-1 down after 12 ends, rallied a bit against a strong Hampshire President’s rink and Martin Acock, Mike Jones, Tim Cox and Paul Demczak eventually lost 23-13.

The rink of Brian Ealey, Kenny Cooper, John Hurren and Mike Morris dropped a 3 on the 21st end to loose 22-21.

Barry Willoughby, Michel Grossnickel, Bill Stewart and Alex Fleming were 16-0 down after 8 ends kept going, but lost 27-14.  The final rink of Roger Oliver, Ian Whelpton, Allan Wase and Chris Cox 19-4 down at one stage eventually lost 23-12.

Basingstoke have a nice club and did a good meal afterwards to finish the day.

Hopefully we can regroup and be more competitive next week when we travel to Herefordshire.    Alex...

 

Oxfordshire BA v Bowls Leicestershire (Men's section) - Friendly match at Banbury Chestnuts BC on 8 June, 2022.

 

Oxfordshire entertained Leicestershire in a County friendly at Banbury Chestnuts In a keenly contested match. Both sides won 3 rinks with the home side winning overall 129-119.

On rink 1 Brian Clarkes rink of Allan Hunt, Ian Whelpton and Tim Cox where always about 10 shots behind and finished up loosing 24-12.

Rink 2 had the unusual situation of father and son playing against each other. Martin Acock on his county debut showed his father Bruce how to lead. Kenny Cooper also on his debut had a solid game, Alex Fleming and Paul Robbins completed the rink which won 22-15.

Rink 3 which was Mike Andrew, Geoff Smith, Keith Buckle and Brian Bloomfield kept it close for 15 ends before the wheels came off, losing 24-13. Barry Willoughby, Allan Ley, John Hurren and Ken Williams on rink 4 put in another solid performance edging a tight game 25-20.

The President Paul Demczak, on rink 5 with Percy Hickman, Keith Dunsby and Mick Morris where trailing 10 -6 after 7 ends but suddenly burst into life picking up 32 shots on the last 14 ends to win 38-13. This was a match winning performance and proves once again how the selectors look after the President.

All rink 6 had to do was keep it tight which they did, recovering from a slow first half Bernie May, Tony Smith on his debut, Allan Wase and Richard Barnett lost 23-19 to give Oxfordshire the match. 

Martin Acock, Kenny Cooper and Tony Smith, all Chipping Norton players, were presented with their colt's badges. Chestnuts as always were the perfect guests, supplying a good green and putting on an enjoyable meal.

Oxfordshire BA v Somerset BA, Friendly played at Bloomfield Park , Bath on 31 May 2022

Oxfordshire travelled to the Bloomfield Club in Bath to play Somerset. Driving through very wet streets, we feared the worst, but the sun shone weakly on the righteous.

Oxfordshire started ok, getting used to a heavy green and all ends were tight at the halfway stage. But after 16 ends we were trailing by 20 shots. Fortunately the never say die attitude prevailed and we won 121-117.

The President’s rink of Barry Willoughby, Ian Whelpton and Alex Fleming picked up 5 on the last 3 ends and were unfortunate to only draw 21-21. Brian Clarke's rink of Mike Jones, Allan Ley and David Lattimore where 16-9 up at one stage, before losing 7 of the last 9 ends to stumble over the line 20-18. It was David Lattimore’s first county match for 20 years, returning from the wilderness that is Warwickshire.

John Benfield, David Wedge, Nigel Satchell and Ken Williams narrowly lost 22-19. Roger Oliver, John Stephens, John Hurren and Richard Barnett struggled throughout against some home club bowlers to lose 21-13. The highest winning rink was Roy Radband, Tim Cox, Keith Buckle and Mike Morris; they only lost 4 ends winning 26-10 and picked up an important 5 on the last end.

Brian Bloomfield’s rink of Michel Grossnickel, Bill Stewart and Martin Oliver looked dead and buried after 16 ends 23-9 down, but somehow picked up 12 on the next 3 ends to only lose 25-22. A match winning performance which capped a fine team performance and gave Oxfordshire another good away day.

Oxfordshire BA  vs  Berkshire BA played 28th May at Suttons Bowls Club Reading  in the Home Counties league.

Oxfordshire continued their excellent start in the Home Counties League with an outstanding performance against local rivals Berkshire. Winning the match 113 shots to 97 and importantly 17-5 points to stay at the top of the league.

On rink one vs a very strong rink with Andy Knapper (England International) skipping against Nathan Lewis. Some outstanding bowling from Bernie May, Jim ,Feeley, Phil Gladden and Nathan gave our team a convincing win 26-11.

Rink 2 saw Kevin Alder’s four James MacDonagh, Brian Clarke, making his Home Counties debut, Martin Shepherd and Kevin again against a strong Berks rink. after 13 ends Kevin was 15-8 up but then became stuck on 15 for the next 5 ends which allowed R Nash to creep up to 15-13 on end 18 . Kevin pulled back on the 19th end to lead 16-15 but end 20 saw 2 points to Berks (16-15) with Berks holding at least 3 shots on the last end, Kevin drew in to allow them one shot and the rink tied at 16-16.

Rink 3 Nick Rae Welsh, Dave Tidball, Dave Leighfied and Nick were up against it throughout the match despite a spirted performance, going down 23-11.

Rink 4 Oxfordshire's rink of Paul Jelfs, Paul Mabbutt, Ian Henwood and A J Docherty were against two former Oxfordshire Middleton Cup players, namely Chris Gilks and Ryan Buckett. It was nip and tuck up to the 11 th end with Berks 13-9 up, then AJ took over and end 18 produced 5 shots and the Oxfordshire rink took the game 19-14.

Rink 5 saw Captain Mark Charlett’s  rink of Mick Nash, Simon Hastings, Colin Whitehead and Mark once again calling the shots and vocal across all rinks to lead 18-6 after 16 ends. Despite excellent bowling and a few heavy bowls from the home side, end 20 saw Mark leading 18-11. End 21 gave Mark another 2 shots and a win 20-11.

Rink 6 of Jason King , Paul Costin, again playing in his first Home Counties match, Shane Cooper and Jason were drawn against a Berks rink lead by Robert Newman (England International). The four were in close contention throughout the match leading 20-17 on end 19 but a very ,very heavy bowl by the Berks skip  smashed the head in all directions but landed surrounded by 5 Berkshire bowls to give them the lead 22-20. One on the last end by Jason saw him lose 22-21

An outstanding performance by the Oxfordshire Team. They came to win and they did. One more match to play at home to Surrey on July 2nd at Kidlington so all to play for.  

 
 
Oxfordshire BA v Bedfordshire BA, Friendly played at Oxford City & County BC on 24 May, 2022
 
Oxfordshire entertained Bedfordshire in a friendly fixture at Oxford City and County.
Rink 1 with Roger Oliver, Chris Lewis, Martin Oliver and Brian Clarke where 8-6 up after 9 ends, they picked up 18 shots on the next 7 ends to finish the highest winning rink 24-11. Rink 2 with Terry Gripe, Ian Whelpton, Les Days and Chris Cox started well, but lost 19-12.
The President Paul Demzak's rink of Michel Grossnickel, Allan Ley and Mike Peterson won the last 5 ends to finish 22-18 winners. Mick Morris's rink of Nigel Satchel, David Byers and John Hurren picked up a 4 on the last end to win 22-17. Paul Robbins rink of Roy Radband, Tim Cox and Keith Buckle eased home 20-14.
Debut skip Alex Fleming, abley supported by Brian Ealey, Geoff Thompson and Gordon Hooker won a tight game 22-17.     Oxfordshire won the match 122-96 points.
A short delay for a hailstorm, didn't detract from an enjoyable afternoon.
 
Oxfordshire BA v Sussex BA - played on 21 May at Kidlington - Home Counties League match
 
Oxfordshire got of to a great start in their Home Counties league programme winning by 118-103 shots and 19-3 on points against Sussex at Kidlington bowls club.
Captain Mark Charlett led by example winning 24-18, his rink contained Harvey Alder, Simon Hastings and Colin Whitehead, Simon had an outstanding game.
Nick Rae Welsh's rink of Brandon King, Chris Lewis and Paul Comley won 22-14.
Kevin Alder's rink of Jamie MacDonagh, Ted Ealey and Martin Shepherd picked up a shot on the last end to tie 15-15.
Jason King's rink of Ryan Full, David Tidball and Shane Cooper struggled throughout loosing 25-12.
AJ Docherty's rink of Paul Jelfs, John Hurren and Ray Gaskins produced probably the performance of the day, coming from 13-2 down to win 18-17, winning the last 5 ends with some fine back end bowling.
Nathan Lewis's rink of the ever green Bernie May, Jim Feeley and Paul Gladden, won 27-14, a 7 on the 18th end took the game away from Sussex.

 

With Berkshire picking up 20 points against Surrey it makes for an interesting match next Saturday at Sutton bowls club when the 2 counties meet.

 

Northamptonshire BA v Oxfordshire BA played Tues 17th May 2022 at Brackley.

Oxfordshire opened their friendly programme with a trip to Brackley to play Northamptonshire.

Rink 1 of Mike Andrew, Terry Gripe, Geoff Thompson and Ken Williams were close for two thirds of their game, but fell away to lose 29-15.

Brian Clarke's rink which contained Barry Willoughby, Bill Stewart and Tim Cox evened things up by winning 28-9. The President with Bernie May, Mike Conrad-Banks and Keith Buckle lost 16-12.

Mike Jones, David Wedge, Alex Fleming and Richard Barnett narrowly lost 17-14. Rink 5 of Roger Oliver, John McGeough, Martin Oliver and Mike Morris won 24-10 and rink 6 with Nigel Satchel, Michel Grossnickel, John Hurren and Chris Cox won 21-15, making the final score 114-96 to Oxfordshire.

Terry Gripe was awarded his 100 game badge, a fine achievement. Bill Stewart and Michel Grossnickel received their colt badges.

 
 
 

Worcestershire BA v  Oxfordshire BA, Friendly atChipping Norton BC, 15 September. 2021

 

Oxfordshire completed a shorter than normal fixture list with an entertaining game against Worcestershire on a rare sunny day, on the Chipping Norton green.

The match was close all the way, with Oxfordshire having the better of the first half. Four of the rinks ended up very tight. The rink of Richard Nolte, Roger Oliver, Martin Oliver and Paul Robbins dropped 3 on the last 2 ends to loose 19-16. The rink containing Roy Radband, Brian Ealey, Allan Ley and Allan Wase picked up a 5 on the 18th end to win 23-21. Percy Hickman, Nigel Satchell, Richard Barnett and Mike Peterson where behind all the way but only lost 21-17.

Mike Jones, Bill Jarvie, Alex Fleming and Brian Clarke 2 down after 18 ends picked up 3 1’s with Alex putting the jack in the ditch on his final wood to win 19-18. The bookies favourite for highest winning rink Mike Andrew, Les Days, Keith Buckle and Brian Bloomfield lost 28-14. Lesson learned don’t bet on favourites.

Which left the Presidents rink of Chris Lewis, David Wedge and Jim Feeley, after 11 ends they are coasting 17-3 up, but then dropped 4 and 3 Fortunately they won 6 out of the last 8 ends. Last of the green with everyone watching they needed 3 to tie and 4 to win. Holding 2 and with the pressure of the crowd on his back Paul drew another shot with the last wood of the day to win 30-12 and tie the match 119-119.

It was a fitting end for a popular President who has worked hard for the County all season. Overall we played 9 matches, won 7, tied 1 and lost 1.

We had an enjoyable meal afterwards, thanks to Roberta and her team. Home player Percy Hickman was awarded his full badge along with Kidlington’s  Jim Feeley. Martin Oliver from Hanborough was awarded his 50 game badge.

Thanks to everyone who has played this season, hopefully we will see you at the OBA dinner and AGM

 

Buckinghamshire BA v Oxfordshire BA - Friendly at Waddeston BC, 17 August, 2021
 
Oxfordshire continued on their winning ways when they visited the picturesque Waddesdon bowls club. As normal Oxfordshire started slowly on a tricky green but had a good second half to win 116 -97. Paul Robbins continued his good form along with Mike Jones, Brian Ealey and Mick Morris to win 26-16 after being 10-4 down. The rink of Allan Hunt, Jock McGeough, Martin Oliver and President Paul Demczak picked a 3 up on the last end to tie 15-15. Nigel Satchel, Roger Oliver, Richard Barnett and Brian Bloomfield looked a strong rink  and proved to be winning 20-11. John Hurren, Keith Dunsby, Keith Buckle and Mike Peterson picked up 6 on the last 3 ends to win 19-13. Percy Hickman, new player Geoff Smith, Alex Fleming and Chris Lewis where 10-1 down but with Percy on top form were unlucky to lose 21-20. The remaining rink of Roy Radband, Ian Whelpton, Les Days and Brian Clarke kept it tight loosing 21-16.
The match was followed by an enjoyable meal where Geoff Smith from Banbury Chestnuts was awarded his colt badge.
 
Hertfordshire BA v Oxfordshire BA - Friendly at Harpenden BC, 3 August , 2021
 

Oxfordshire travelled down the M25 to play Hertfordshire at Harpenden and continued their winning form. Oxfordshire started slowly on a tricky green and were 19 shots down at the halfway stage. The rink of Mike Jones, Roger Oliver, Alex Fleming and Mick Morris struggled throughout against a rink from the home club, at one stage 23–5 down and finishing 31-12 down. Fortunately it was better on the other rinks. The President’s hand picked rink of John Hurren , Ian Whelpton and Chris Lewis won 28-11 as did Roy Radband, Bob Wright on his county debut, Brian Ray and Mike Peterson. Mike’s rink won more ends to deprive the President Paul Demczak of getting the highest winning rink, much to his annoyance.

The rink of Allan Hunt, Keith Dunsby also on his debut, Dereck Lafford and Brian Clarke won 18-16. The two remaining rinks of John Stephens, David Wedge, Allan Ley and Paul Robbins dropped a 3 on the 20th end to loose a tight match 18-16. The ever dependable Brian Bloomfield ably assisted by Bill Jarvie, Jock McGeough and Martin Oliver won 22-16, to round off a successful afternoon. The final score was 124-103 to Oxfordshire, a 40 shot turnaround on the last 10 ends

Alex

 
 
Bowls Wiltshire v Oxfordshire BA - Friendly at Wroughton BC, 27 July, 2021
 
Oxfordshire travelled to Wroughton bowls club to face Wiltshire in a friendly fixture which the home side had reduced to 5 triples due to Covid worries.
Oxfordshire won 4 of the 5 triples on an interesting green. Brian Clarke's triple of Nigel Satchel and Alex Fleming got of to a flier leading 16 -3 at the halfway stage, but fell away in the last few ends to win 22-17. Similarly the triple of Mike Jones, Keith Buckle and Paul Robbins after leading 19-7 finished winning 19-17.
The President Paul Demczak ably assisted by Chris Lewis and Mick Morris came from behind to win 20-13, Paul's first win as President. The triple of Roy Radband, Martin Oliver and Mike Peterson struggled for most of the match loosing 19-10. The strongest looking triple of John Hurren, Richard Barnett and Brian Bloomfield only conceeded 5 singles, scoring 27 shots in reply. 
Overall the score was 98-71 to Oxfordshire. We finished of another enjoyable away day with an excellent meal.
 
 
 
Oxfordshire BA v Warwickshire BA - Friendly at Banbury Borough, 6 July 2021 
Oxfordshire played their second friendly fixture of the season against Warwickshire at a windy Banbury Borough.
Mike Peterson's rink got of to a flyer, scoring 20 shots in the first 7 ends without reply.
Brian Bloomfield's rink was also up by 15 shots at the halfway stage.
The other rinks where much tighter.
The rain mainly held of and Oxfordshire finished up winning on all 6 rinks, 140 shots to 99.
Brian Bloomfield's rink which contained Allan Hunt, Ian Whelpton and Mick Morris where the highest winners 26-12, Mike Peterson's rink finished up winning by 8 shots.
The meal afterwards was up to the Boroughs usual high standard and will probably not be bettered this season.
Prior to the match Gerald Fountain had done a superb job organising the car parking.
 
 
 
Oxfordshire BA v Surrey BA - Friendly at Egham, Surrey 29 June 2021
After waiting 18 months for his first match as County President, Paul Demczak took his side to Egham to face a strong Surrey side.
After playing most of the match in miserable wet conditions, Paul and his opposite number decided to call it a day after 16 ends. After 15 ends we where behind but 3's from Paul's and Mike Peterson's rinks helped Oxfordshire to a 87-86 win, the only time we led in the match.
Earlier Allan Leys rink which contained Roy Radband, Jack Lafford and Mick Morris had won by 27-6. Brian Bloomfield's rink were Oxfordshire's only other winners.
Bob Parker from Burford Town had an impressive performance in his first County match.
We finished the day with an enjoyable meal. Thanks to everyone who played.