WILTSHIRE women just missed out on lifting the Johns Trophy (inter-county championship) on the opening day of the national championship finals last Saturday at Royal Leamington Spa.

They lost in the final by 16 shots, going down 125-109 to Surrey who were claiming their record-breaking 22nd John Trophy title success.

It was only the second time Wiltshire had reached the final of the competition following their lone victory over Sussex in 1995.

They was forced into a late change to the side that had beaten Devon in the quarter-finals, owing to Stratton Churchway’s Wendy Anderson being unavailable.

Amesbury’s Janice Rowe came into Alex Jacobs’ rink for the morning semi-final against Yorkshire with ladies county secretary Babs Salter (Wroughton) replacing her for the afternoon final versus Surrey.

Wiltshire began in the morning semi-finals against Yorkshire with an accomplished performance.

They raced into a 29-12 lead across the board after five ends and never looked back extending the advantage to 55-32 at 10 ends.

Wiltshire continued to rack-up the shots moving 89-55 up at 15 ends and 109-70 at 18 before sealing a 129-79 success and a place in the final.

They took the honours on four of the six rinks with Alison Fail (Purton) leading her quartet to a big 34-8 victory while Kathryn Yeoman (Box) was close behind with her rink winning 30-7 win.

However, in the final against Surrey, winners of the Johns in 2014 and 2015, Wiltshire made a laboured start and were 36-22 down overall after five ends and never really recovered with Alison Fail’s rink 13-0 down and Marcia Hartley’s rink 10-0 down.

At 10 ends Wiltshire trailed 65-41 but had pulled back the deficit to only 84-79 at 15 but that was the nearest they came to unseating Surrey as they trailed 106-88 at 18 ends and finally lost 125-109.

Wiltshire shared the rink honours 3-3 with Jacobs winning by 13 shots, Linda Young by 10 and Yeoman by four shots. But the 35-9 loss recorded by Hartley’s team and 26-12 loss by Fail’s quartet was too big a deficit to cover.


Johns Trophy semi-final v Yorkshire at Royal Leamington Spa, Rink A1: Chris Mitchell, Julie Jones (both Purton), Janice Bull (Amesbury) & Alison Fail (Purton) beat Sue Hugill 34-8. Rink A2: Deanne Davis (Wanborough), Viv Baskerville (Chippenham Town), Janet Willis (Stratton Churchway) & Delia Godwin (Spencer Melksham) beat Janet Farnsworth 20-16. Rink A3: Ann Roberts-Phare (North Wilts), Janice Rowe (Amesbury), Sue Cooke & Alex Jacobs (both Box) lost to Lynne Metcalfe 14-24. Rink A4: Ann Hindley (Wilton), Margaret Annetts (Salisbury), Charlie Godwin (Royal Wootton Bassett) & Kathryn Yeoman (Box) beat Sue Allen 30-7. Rink A5: Georgina Newman (Avon), Jean Collier, Debbie Shadwell (both Box) & Marcia Hartley (Avon) beat Marie Dawson 19-11. Rink A6: Maggie Jordan (Highworth), Bev Lilley (Devizes), Joanna Hicks & Linda Young (both Highworth) lost to Ann Russell 12-13.

Score: Wiltshire beat Yorkshire 129-79.

Johns Trophy final v Surrey at Royal Leamington Spa, Rink B1: A Hindley (Wilton), M Annetts (Salisbury), C Godwin (RWB) & Kathryn Yeoman (Box) beat Ann Rapley 20-16. Rink B2: D Davis (Wanborough), V Baskerville (Chip T), J Willis (S Churchway) & Delia Godwin (Spencer Melk) lost to Pam Garden 17-20. Rink B3: G Newman (Avon), J Collier, D Shadwell (both Box) & Marcia Hartley (Avon) lost to Shan Maylin 9-35. Rink B4: C Mitchell, J Jones (both Purton), J Bull (Amesbury) & Alison Fail (Purton) lost to Pat Bourne 12-26. Rink B5: A Roberts-Phare (N Wilts), Babs Salter (Wroughton), S Cooke & Alex Jacobs (both Box) beat Debbie Souter 24-11. Rink B6: M Jordan (Highworth), B Lilley (Devizes), J Hicks & Linda Young (both Highworth) beat Margaret Smith 27-17.

Score: Wiltshire lost to Surrey 125-109.