Johns Trophy & Walker Cup Report – Wiltshire Ladies secure double trip to Leamington!
What a fantastic season it has been for our ladies in county team competitions. Over the last 2 weeks, the Leamington qualifiers have been decided in the Johns & Walker, with Wiltshire being involved in the qualifying matches for both tournaments.
First up on the 17th July were the Walker Cup regional finals. Wiltshire ladies had to win two matches to reach this point, and after a nailbiting 1 shot victory in the opening round vs Warwickshire, our ladies moved onto a match vs Dorset, which they won relatively comfortably, 48-34.
In order to secure our place at Leamington, we would have to win two games at the regional finals at Kingswood and Hanham in Gloucestershire, the first of these being against Worcestershire. All early signs pointed to a very close battle throughout this match, with the score being 9-6 to Wiltshire overall at 5 ends and 18-16 at 10 ends.
However, a remarkable display over the next 8 ends as good as sealed the victory, with Kathryn Yeoman’s rink moving from 9-9 at 11 ends, to 25-9 at 18 ends. Sue Cooke’s rink, who were level at 10 ends, also managed to get out in front at 18 ends, leading by 4 shots, leaving the overall score at 42-22. With no need to chase the game at this point, the ladies saw the last 3 ends out and moved onto the afternoons regional final with a 45-31 victory.
A tough game on paper followed for our ladies in the afternoon vs a very strong Devon side, with a place in the national finals at Leamington up for grabs. Our ladies settled to the task very quickly, leading 9-3 overall at 5 ends, and extending this to 22-7 after 10 ends, Kathryn Yeoman’s rink leading the charge with a 14-2 lead, and Sue Cooke’s quartet also playing well, 8-5 in front.
We were in no mood to let this lead slip and at 18 ends the lead remained at 15 shots, Kathryn Yeoman now leading 21-7, and Sue Cooke still marginally ahead at 15-14. Kathryn eventually finished up winning 26-11 after the 21 ends and with Devon needing 14 shots across the last two ends against Sue Cooke, they conceded the match, meaning Wiltshire had secured their place in the national finals, a fantastic result!
Moving onto the Johns Trophy, on the 23rd July Wiltshire took on Cornwall with a place in the national finals at stake, looking to follow up on the Walker Cup success from the previous weekend. In the lead up to this crucial clash, Wiltshire secured strong wins over Dorset and Somerset, 119-87 and 129-107 respectively.
It was an incredibly tight start to the match vs Cornwall, with nothing to separate the two counties after 5 ends, and Cornwall just about seizing the upperhand at 10 ends, leading by 7 shots. However, there was a huge shift in momentum in the second half, with Wiltshire snatching back the initiative to lead by 8 shots at 15 ends. Sensing that they were edging closer to securing their place at Leamington, there was a huge charge to the finish line, extending the lead to 15 shots at 18 ends and eventually closing the game out with an emphatic 33 shot victory.
After two incredibly successful weekends, our ladies move onto the national finals in both the Walker and Johns. First up will be the Johns on the 28th August, where we will take on Lincolnshire in the National Semi-Final. In the Walker, we will take on Yorkshire in the National Semi-Final on the 11th September. Good luck to all involved!
Written by Mikey Titcombe