BOWLS players across the Isle of Wight have had a relatively enjoyable summer of play, compared to many other sports, with clubs reaching the business end of the season — vying for top club honours.

Ryde Marina Bowls Club held its first official club competition of the summer, the Stan Stoddard Cup, played under Bowls England’s Covid-19 guidelines in accordance with Government guidance.

The result was extremely close, with Brian Taplin the champion having won all his four games — beating John Carrett, who also won his four games with a slightly inferior shot difference.

The mixed four-wood singles competition, played in a round-robin format, saw each player face four others in a random draw — marking and umpiring for two other games.

To avoid cross-contamination, each of the 21 players had their own jack and mat throughout.

Isle of Wight County Press: Stoddard Cup action at Ryde Marina Bowls Club. Photo: Colin HoathStoddard Cup action at Ryde Marina Bowls Club. Photo: Colin Hoath

There was a mixture of good county standard players, experienced club members and new, inexperienced bowlers, with no seeding or handicapping of opponents and rinks allocated completely at random.

This made for some very close games and some hammerings.

Tournament organiser, Colin Hoath, said “It was a bit unusual to see players walking up and down the greens carrying their own mats and jacks, but we would not have been able to run the event without that, so they soon got used to it.

“We are quite proud we were able to run this event within all the current guidelines and still enable enjoyment to be had by all — whether they were competitive or just playing for the experience.”

Meanwhile, Plessey Bowls Club, in Cowes, held its Covid-restricted finals day at the Isle of Wight Community Club on Plessey Bowls club held its restricted finals day on Sunday.

Isle of Wight County Press: Plessey Bowls Club — Martin Butchers, left, receiving the singles championship trophy from Barry Bridgeman.Plessey Bowls Club — Martin Butchers, left, receiving the singles championship trophy from Barry Bridgeman.

The men’s championship, which had been competed for over the past three weeks or so, concluded with the final between Martin Butchers and Barry Bridgeman. Butchers won 21-8.

This year, Plessey Bowls Club started a new pairs competition — the Covid 19 League.

Started in mid-August, the competition concluded with a final, won by John and Barbara Herbert 25-9 against Nick Hodder and Brian Longden.

The bronze medal game was a lot closer, with Martin and Denise Butchers beating John and Debbie Crews 19-18.