WILTSHIRE junior men finished as runners-up for the second year in a row to Somerset in the annual May Day Four Counties U25 Tournament at Cheltenham BC (Suffolk Square).

They took the honours on two rinks against Worcestershire and Somerset but lost out on the other to hosts Gloucestershire going down on the last end by a single shot 21-20.

Somerset also had two winning rinks and one losing one but because they had a better shot difference took the trophy for the second year in a row.

“It was disappointing to lose out to Somerset again on shots difference,” said team manager Adam Tanner.

“However, that isn’t important as it was a very positive and useful afternoon and a very good warm-up for the boys with the White Rose Trophy, national U25 Two Fours competition, coming up soon against Gloucestershire.”

Tanner added: “Prior to that we have another U25 trial this time against Oxfordshire this coming Saturday at South Oxford (10.30am).”

In the Four Team Tournament, Kyle Anderson’s (Royal Wootton Bassett) rink containing Craig Hatherall (Westlecot) was always ahead and led 14-6 at halfway before finally winning 21-16.

The other two rinks were both down at halfway with Craig Morphet’s foursome losing 10-5 and Mike Titcombe’s quartet adrift 13-8 at ten ends. However, both fought back well in the last quarter of the match.

Morphet’s (RWB) rink including James Richman (Westlecot) and Ben Choules (Highworth) went from five shots down to win 17-15 while Titcombe’s four with fellow Westlecot team mate Gary Jackson at three went further behind to trail 20-11 at 15 ends but came extremely close to snatching a win.

They cut the gap to 20-17 at 18 ends and finally went down by a shot 21-20 to Gloucestershire.

The Four Counties tournament where each county Gloucestershire, Somerset, Wiltshire and Worcestershire supplies a rink against the other three playing alongside each other is used as a preparation event for the early rounds in the national White Rose Trophy, the U25 inter-county double rinks championship.

Wiltshire’s opening game in this competition, in which they have twice reached the semi-finals in recent years, is a home preliminary round tie against Gloucestershire at Royal Wootton Bassett on Sunday, May 14 (10.30am).

Awaiting the winners is a first round home match against Worcestershire at the end of May.

RESULTS 2017 May Day Four Counties U25 Tournament at Cheltenham.

Rink 1: Jordan Moody (Salisbury), Jamie Shadwell (Spencer Moulton), Gary Jackson & Mike Titcombe (both Westlecot) lost to Max Risby (Glos) 20-21. Rink 2: Tom Newman (Avon), Chris Poole (Holt), Craig Hatherall (W’lecot) & Kyle Anderson (Royal Wootton Bassett) beat Graham Weaver (Worcs) 21-16. Rink 3: James Richman (W’lecot), Ben Choules (Highworth), Adam Bolwell (S Moulton) & Craig Morphet (RWB) beat Chris Spurrey (Somerset) 17-15.


U25 squad v Oxon at South Oxford today - Four Rink Trial: Kyle Anderson (Royal Wootton Bassett), Adam Bolwell (Spencer Moulton), Ben Choles (Highworth), Bradley Frankham (S Moulton), Craig Hatherall (Westlecot), Jordan Moody (Salisbury), Craig Morphet (RWB), David Murray (High), Ashley Peach (Amesbury), Chris Poole (Holt), James Richman (West), James Shadwell (S Moulton), Mike Titcombe (West), George Twine (RWB), Alex Wickham (Chippenham Town) and Jack Wilkins (Supermarine).