|ISBT Storm Leeds Open 2012|
|Written by Tony Brown|
|Sunday, 14 October 2012|
International Senior Bowling Tour 2012
Storm Leeds Open 2012 - 11th - 14th October
Ron Deacon and Angie Brown crowned champions
The tenth and final stop on the 2012 ISBT tour was held at the 1st Bowl in Leeds, England. This was the first visit of the ISBT to Yorkshire, and although a long way for many European bowlers, it still attracted entries from Austria, Belgium, Germany, Italy, Jersey, Netherlands, and Romania. In total, 58 men and 17 women took part, playing for a share of the £10,750 prize fund. The format for the tournament was two blocks of 6 games qualifying, with the lowest block optionally being replaced by a better re-entry score. There were also additional opportunities to quality through Turbo scores.
The top eight men and top two women would receive byes to later rounds, so achieving a top position in qualification would guarantee a better final placing.
Age bonus started at age 51 (1 pin per game), then increased a pin for every additional year of age with no limit. As with all ISBT events, there was a separate division for women.
The first squad on Thursday lunchtime was led by the Two Ronnies, Deacon and Oldfield with 1385 and 1363. They were closely followed by tournament manager Jack Smith. In the ladies section, Karen Barfoot (Eng) took an early lead with 1141.
The second squad was tied between Brian Wilkins (Eng) and Steve Ball (Eng) both on 1338. Karen Barfoot improved in her second entry to now stand at the top of the qualification list.
By now it was becoming clear that although good scores could be found, not everyone was able to achieve consistent carry, with a huge number of corner pins being left. In squad 3, Viorel Simut (Ro) was the winner with 1344, with two good games over 250, but also a couple of sub-200 games, showing how tricky the condition could be.
Squad 4 saw a new high block set by Gary Barlow (Eng) with 1393, a single pin ahead of Ron Oldfield. This squad saw the largest ladies entry yet, with eight bowlers playing. However, the condition was proving difficult for the ladies, with Farida Pascoal-Blom being top, but still not breaking 1200, with only 1159.
By now, the top bowlers were getting to understand how to play the condition devised by Jack Smith, and in Squad 5 Chris Vandamme now demonstrated that consistent high scoring was possible with an excellent 1472. For the ladies, Farida Pascoal-Blom improved slightly with 1190.
Saturday morning brought an early start for the bowlers, who arrived to find a very frustrated Jack Smith. Unbelievably, for the second ISBT tournament in a row, the lane machine had failed. Fortunately it had already dressed 11 lanes, which was enough to allow the squad to squeeze on, but now playing 5 to a pair. As this was an English Ranking event, lane tapes were taken after dressing each time to ensure conditions were equal for every squad. Les Grant, the lane inspector, confirmed that the lanes which the machine had conditioned were the same as previous squads, so squad six was able to proceed.
In Game 1, England’s Paul Morris showed he was wide awake, starting with the first eight strikes. The ninth was well wide, but made the pocket to leave a single 7 pin, which was taken out by a late toppling pin. Taking advantage of this slight piece of good luck, the last three were great shots for the tournament’s first 300 game. The squad was led by Dave Rawding (Eng) on 1385. In the ladies section, England’s Angie Brown posted an excellent 1330 block to show that it was also possible for the ladies to score on this condition.
After the sixth squad, the men’s qualification was led by Roger Pieters on 2610, with Chris Vandamme second on 2766. The top two men would qualify for the final directly, so there was keen competition for these places. In the ladies section, Angie Brown led, with Karen Barfoot second. Again, the top two would qualify directly to the final.
Thanks to a 150 mile round trip by pro-shop operator Paul Carter to Lincoln bowl, the replacement part for the lane machine arrived just as the squad was finishing, and some quick work by the technicians meant the tournament could continue as planned.
In the seventh squad, Ron Oldfield showed he was now comfortable with the condition in his native Yorkshire, with a squad winning total of 1479, just a few pins ahead of Lol Ellis (Eng). This saw him into the lead of the overall standings, pushing Chris Vandamme out of the important top two positions. The ladies section saw Tricia Lloyd (Eng) take the top spot on 1259.
The eighth and last squad saw a number of bowlers trying to make up places and achieve good qualification positions. In the second game, England’s Ken Burton achieved the second 300 game of the tournament, his overall score now securing him a place in the next round. Roger Pieters took top spot in the squad, with Chris Vandamme second, but neither posting a high enough re-entry score to improve. The top two men qualifiers overall were Ron Oldfield and Roger Pieters. Loris Masetti (Ita) took eighth place and the final position which provided a bye through the first final round. The cut for those who would go forward was at 36th position, which was a tie between Ben Penninkhof (Ned) and Les Grant (Eng). In case of a tie, the highest scratch score decided who went forward, and this resulted in Ben Penninkhof making the finals.
In the ladies section, there were good scores from Liliane Vintens (1336), and Angie Brown (1303), these two were the ladies who would go straight to the final round, with Angie leading on 2633, some 170 pins clear of the field.
With all the places from the qualification rankings decided, the final spots would be filled from the Turbo games. The four men qualifiers were Viorel Simut (Rom), Gabrielle Benvenuti (Ita), Gary Oakley (Eng), and Ken Wray (Eng). The ladies turbo qualifiers were Sub Cobb (Eng) and Lorna Chandler (Eng)
Sunday morning saw the men who qualified in positions 9 to 36, plus the Turbo qualifiers bowl four games, starting from scratch, looking for a top 14 place to progress further. Due to one bowler not being able to make the final, the unlucky Les Grant who just missed the cut was able to continue in the tournament. Leading this squad was tournament manager Jack Smith (Eng) with 952, just two pins ahead of Steve Carnall (Eng). The cut was at 830 for Keith Hodge (Eng), with Gordon Humphries (Eng) missing by a single pin, although he was able to continue to the next round, as another bowler didn’t take up their place.
These 14 qualifiers were then joined by bowlers ranked 3 to 8 to bowl another 4 game block. The top 10 from this round would then progress to the final, joined by the two top qualifiers. Leading this squad was Nev Robinson (Eng) on 941, with the top eight places all being taken by English bowlers. Only Ben Penninkhof (Ned) and Fatu Valentin (Rom) would represent the rest of Europe in the final.
In the ladies section, those in positions 3 to 12 plus the turbo qualifiers bowled 4 games from scratch, only the top four would then progress to the final. Wendy Payne (Eng) led the way with 820, to be joined in the final by three fellow Team England players Jackie Atkinson, Karen Barfoot and Jan Steiner.
Unusually for an ISBT event, there was no round-robin final, just a further six game block, starting from scratch. Ron Deacon (Eng) started strongly with a 267 scratch game to hold a 42 pin lead after the first game. He maintained his lead through game four, with Nev Robinson and Ron Oldfield not far behind. However, Ron Deacon’s lead was never lost, and he finished the winner by a clear 51 pins. A late charge with games of 237 and 259 pushed Roger Pieters (Bel) into second place, ahead of Nev Robinson who finished third.
In the ladies final, scoring was slow at first, with no-one managing over 200 in the first game which was led by Jan Steiner. The second game saw Angie Brown post 256 scratch to leap into the lead, ahead of Karen Barfoot. Third game was Liliane Vinten’s turn to have a big game with 247, now tying for the lead with Angie Brown. Angie continued to bowl steadily and pull away from the field, but in the last game a big effort by Liliane Vintens almost caught the lead, but finally finished in second place, ahead of Jan Steiner in third.
At the end of the ISBT season, ten tournaments have been held in six different countries. The competitive nature of the tour can be seen as every tournament has had a different male winner, coming from six different European countries. In the women’s division, six different women have each won a tour stop, but Angie Brown won a total of four tournaments to be the most successful bowler on the tour.
The first stop on the 2013 tour is a return to France and Plaza Bowling in Reims for the Plaza Senior Open from the 23rd to 27th January 2013. Full details, including the 2013 tournament calendar are available at the ISBT web site, http://www.isbtbowlingtour.eu/
|Last Updated ( Wednesday, 17 October 2012 )|
|< Prev||Next >|
Northern Grand Prix