Our croquet tournament curtain-raiser of the season is the annual Ealing v High Wycombe croquet contest for the Lloyd-Pratt Mallet. The match celebrates the ties of friendship between the two clubs, dating back to when Ealing hosted High Wycombe members when our lawns were out of action.
With Ealing only having emerged victorious on one previous occasion, they were particularly keen to redress the balance – especially as the 2019 encounter had to be settled by an extra-time shoot-out at the peg which we won.
The weather certainly played its part, with a chilly morning developing into a gloriously sunny day.
The usual format was observed, with two GC and two AC doubles pairings playing morning and afternoon matches. The Ealing AC pairings managed to win both morning matches, against Richard Peperell & Roger Holwerda (Roger playing his first senior AC Tournament at the age of 15 yrs) and Alan Clark & Michael Bowker.
Honours were even in the morning GC matches, with Stephen Wright and Annie Kasparian winning their match for HWCC and Don Rutherford and Keith Muras coming second in their match. Annie was playing for HWCC although her primary club is Ealing but her treachery was compounded by playing a miracle shot to deny Ealing victory in the deciding game.
So, at lunchtime in the sunshine Ealing were 3-1 up.
In the afternoon, the AC pairing saw Richard and Roger claim a memorable victory +4T with Roger showing some great skills – hopefully a star of our future. In the other AC match, Alan and Michael were not so lucky. In GC, Annie and Stephen were not so successful as they had been in the morning and success also eluded Don and Keith in their match. So, Ealing emerged as winners by a 6-2 margin.
12/4/2021 02:58:57 pm
For the purpose of clarity, the Lloyd-Pratt is the one in the middle.
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