SUPERMARINE foursome Ann Andrews, Cheryl Walker, Nikki Kemble-Young and skip Susan Griffiths were the surprise package of last season’s ladies’ county fours championship event.

They collected a couple of big scalps on the way to the quarter-finals and their biggest of all came when defeating holders Box, skipped by Alex Jacobs, 20-15 in the final at Avon last July to lift the title and book a place in the national finals at Royal Leamington Spa representing Wiltshire.

It was a magnificent achievement and a first for all of the victorious Supermarine ladies. None of them had ever reached a county final before, let alone represented Wiltshire at the national finals.

This season, these four Marine ladies have made a determined start to their campaign to retain the county crown.

Over the past three weeks, they have beaten a North Wilts quartet led by Lyn Brown, and in the last 16, last year’s losing semi-finalists Highworth, skipped by Linda Young, to book a place in quarter-finals at Amesbury today.

They have been placed in the bottom half of the draw and will face the North Wilts quartet of Janet Hardie, June Coyle, Ann Roberts-Phare and Fizz Mace.

If successful, they would face either a Chippenham Town or Box four in the semis.

The only other local club to reach the last eight were Westlecot, skipped by Linda Whittingham, who beat a Highworth rink led by Deanne Davis in the last 16 last Friday.

The Westlecot team of Ann Haunton, Linda Perfitt, Kay Webb and Whittingham have been handed a tough draw in the top section as they have been paired with former champions Box, led by Jacobs.

If successful, they would meet either Winsley or Salisbury in the semis.

WILTSHIRE ladies made a poor start to the defence of their South West Counties League title.

In their opening game against Cornwall played on the neutral venue of Tiverton West End on Tuesday, they were beaten 119-103.

Wiltshire only took the honours on one of the six rinks, that was the rink skipped by Stratton Churchway’s Janet Willis, who led throughout the match for a 26-15 victory.

Otherwise it was a sad state of affairs in the other five games, with narrow two-shot defeats for the rinks skipped by Babs Salter (Wroughton) and Alison Fail (Purton), while the rinks led by Rose Fitzpatrick (Chippenham Town), Janice Rowe (Amesbury) and Margaret Annetts (Salisbury) were also beaten.

Wiltshire only collected two of the 22 points on offer.

They will be seeking better fortunes in their next SWCL match, which is another away encounter against Somerset at Chew Stoke on June 12.