Shropshire Ladies claimed the County Championship after beating Warwick & Worcester in the final. They won fifteen of the twenty-four games to clinch a twenty-three point win. The finals day of the BCGLBA County Championship was held at the Stretton club in Derbyshire. The Waterloo Cup, contested by the losing semi-finalists, was won by Yorkshire Ladies who claimed fourteen of the twenty-four games on the way to a ninety-one point win over Wales.
The Waterloo Cup was the first to be decided as Yorkshire went into battle against Wales. There was no stopping the Yorkshire Ladies who won seven out of the eight games to sweep into an ultimately decisive lead. Special mention goes to Alexis Lunn-Gadd who beat reigning Waterloo Champion Linda Williams.
This match was just the warm up as both Warwick and Worcester and Shropshire Ladies were watching from the side of the green. The final started with Shropshire edging a close first set of games by seven points after claiming five of the eight games. The wins by Shropshire’s Lisa Pessall and Alison Cotton were important as they reduced the damage caused by exceptional performances by Sue Dunkley and Kath Willetts.
It was the middle set of games that gave Shropshire a big enough lead to defend. Jackie Rutter and Alison Gaut led the way for the Shropshire who pushed the lead to over thirty points by claiming seven of the eight games.
Warwick and Worcester needed to dominate the last set of games. They did win five of the eight games but could only pull back eleven points. Abby Easthope led the Warwick & Worcester charge but it was the win by Tracy Ryan which took the winds out of the sails and let Shropshire cruise to victory.
For the full results please go here.
With the Ladies County season now completed thoughts turn to the plans to change the structure of the competition for 2017. The proposed changes would see the groups reduced to four county’s per group. The bottom teams in each group to enter a ‘holding’ group for the following season. The county championship would then run in a similar form to the BCGBA County Championship. This event is to be decided this weekend and Shropshire men attempt to claim the double. They will face a tough game against Yorkshire though who will probably start as favourite’s.
The BCGLBA Annual Meeting in November will also see a new Secretary and Treasurer appointed after Jackie Rutter and Helen Clee registered their intention not to seek re-election for next year. Both Jackie and Helen have impressed everyone with the way they have run the association and will prove to be hard to replace.