In the Final of this Trophy did provide a very tight contest between the finalists, Northop "D" and Buckley, the former holding a 15pts handicap advantage at the start of the evening, this actually increasing to 37pts by the end of the 2nd set. However, Buckley fought back to steadily erode this lead until going into the final set they were 10pts behind. Hence the pressure was on for both Number 1 players, namely Ben Shakespeare & Geoff Warren in the last contested set. Geoff won the 1st game 21-10 to put the holders in front by a single point, thus putting Buckley in command of winning the Trophy for a third successive year. However, they had not reckoned on the tenacity & determination of young Ben Shakespeare, who played superbly in the last game taking it by 21-15 too snatch the trophy from Buckley's grasp by 5pts to give Northop "D" the win. The final score was Northop "D" 557pts to Buckley's 552pts.
Congratulations to the Northop team of Ben, Gerry Hotchkiss & Jac Kennedy and commiserations to the Buckley team of Geoff, his son Scott & Nathan Gartland.
However, a rematch is on the cards next Friday 4th May when they meet again in the final of the Ledgard Handicap Cup - possible to turn the tables, who knows?
The semi-finals resulted in wins for Buckley & Northop "D", with Buckley beating Hawarden "B" by 62 pts & Northop "D" overcoming Flint by 63 pts. The Final, which should provide a closely fought event, will be played at the Edith Bankes Memorial Hall, Northop on Thursday 26th April, with Buckley endeavouring to win the trophy for the third successive season.
The recent extreme weather conditions resulted in two of the 2nd round matches having to be re-arranged, one of which has now been played, the second to be played W/C 19th March. Completed matches resulted in wins for Flint by 108pts over Northop "F"; Buckley going through because Northop "E" could not raise a team and in the match of the round Northop "D" beating their club colleagues, the Div.1 league winners, Northop by a single point. Hawarden "B" against Northop "C" resulted in a win by 14 pts for the Hawarden team.
The semi-final draw, to be played week commencing 9th April, is as follows:-
Flint (260) v Northop "D" (225)
Buckley (210) v Hawarden "B" (215)
The 1st round matches were completed on Fri. 26th January 2018 resulting in wins for Buckley (Div.2 winners) by 30 pts over Div.1 runners-up, Caergwrle BB; Northop "A" (Div.1) losing to Flint of Div.2 by 55pts; Northop "D" (Div.2) overcoming their club colleagues from Div.1, Northop "B", although the latter played sportingly with only 2 players because of illness, even though it meant losing by some 199 pts, whereas Northop "E" of Div.2 went through because Hawarden "A" had to concede because they couldn't raise a team; the two Hawarden Div.2 teams contest resulted in Hawarden "C" losing by 11 pts to Hawarden "B" and finally Div.1 winners Northop beating Hawarden from the same division by 75 pts.
The winners will be joined by the 2 teams having byes in the 1st round in the 2nd round, fixtures to be played week commencing 26th February 2018 as follows:-
Northop "F" (360) v Flint (260)
Northop (SCR) v Northop "D" (225)
Buckley (210) v Northop "E" (275)
Hawarden "B" (215) v Northop "C" (140)