THREE finals of the Seniors Championships at the West Lothian IBC proved a fitting showcase climax to 2008 at the Inveralmond stadium, and the chief headline maker was Peter the Great in the shape of ageless veteran Peter Ball, who captured the Singles crown for a record-extending eighth time.
The 25-end final was a magnificent advert for Seniors bowling, with former champion Alistair Lindsay putting up a bold show and keeping the destination of the title in the melting pot until Ball landed a late 1, 2 to clinch a 21-17 victory.
Lindsay produced the better start to lead 6-0 but Ball pegged him back to 7-7 then at 9-9 made a forward move to 15 with what looked like a decisive run of 3, 1, 2.
But Lindsay jacked up the temperature with a determined fightback of 1, 2, 1, 2, which brought the melting pot to the boil at 15-15 before Ball reacted with a 2, 1 reply to regain the initiative at 18-15.
Ball came back under pressure with the loss of a two to 18-17, but had the measure of Lindsay to hit 21 two-ends later and so add to his previous magnificent seven successes in 1989, 91, 93, 94 97, 02 and 06.
While the Singles final was a Christmas cracker affair the challenge for the title in the Pairs failed to produce the same spark but that was down to the powerful display from Lawson Trotter and Robert McIvor who crushed Davy Heron and Charlie Sturrock, 17-4.
And there was lots of sparkle in the Triples final from the trio of Bobby McMillan Jim Craig and Brian Holloran, who made telling space with a three to 8-4 and went on to a 13-7 triumph over Bob Cameron Bob Cuthill and Jim Cairney.
THE climax to the League Cup qualifying play at WLIBC produced the following top-three combines from each of the six divisions through to the knockout stage.
Division One – Thomas Mann, Derek Mairs, Grant Knox; Division Two – Brian Holloran, John Aitken, Kenny Black; Division Three – Jack McLaren, Davy Johnston, Davy Heggie; Division Four – Brian Lockhart, Bill Mitchell,Denis Rafferty; Division Five – Stan Gardiner, AW Neil, George Millar; Division Six – Steve Ritchie, Morris Cavanagh, Kenny Girdler.
NEIL Speirs has finished 2008 as the No2 player in the SIBA-ranking list with the West Lothian IBC star some five points adrift of Lanarkshire’s Robert Grant and almost two ahead of Scott Kennedy from East Lothian.
Thomas Mann is in the picture at 18 and George Sneddon features at 20.