Under-18 Merit


ON SUNDAY 21st JUNE WITH A 6pm START at DONNINGTON WOOD. Entries on the day - free

There was no need for prayers as Harry Church completed an historic junior double in the league.

The 13-year-old Sinclair bowler added the Under-18 Merit title to the Under-15 crown he won earlier in the season with a never-say-die performance at Donnington Wood.

He trailed 8-2 against Shropshire junior team-mate Jamie Fletcher (Sir John Bayley) in Sunday night’s final, but refused to lie down.

The Ercall Wood School pupil got on a mark on an edge of the No.1 green, took the lead for the first time at 15-14 and then delivered some cracking winners to seal a 21-18 success.

League competition secretary Phil King congratulated Church on completing the double, having retained the Under-15 title at Albrighton in May, and commiserated with a gutted beaten finalist.

Fletcher, having lost in the Under-15 final in 2012, had look set to secure a first individual honour after beating favourite Aaron King 21-15 in his first game and then racing past Sophie Massey-Jones in the semi-finals on a night when there were just eight entries.

But it was not to be, and Church - from Arleston in Wellington - can surely look forward to a call to Sinclair’s first team in the not too distant future.

Quarter-final scores: Joe Killen (Shifnal) 9 Sophie Massey-Jones (Newport) 21, Aaron King (Bowring) 15 Jamie Fletcher (SJ Bayley) 21, Emma Massey-Jones (Newport) 9 Harry Church (Sinclair) 21, Tom Killen (Shifnal) 18 Susie Lawson (Bowring) 21.

Semi-finals: Sophie Massey-Jones 3 Fletcher 21, Church 21 Lawson 13.

2014 COMPETITION, played as a one-dayer on Sunday, June 15 (2pm start)

Kieran Buckley’s dramatic emergence on the Mid Shropshire junior scene is now complete after a thrilling individual title success.

The Donnington Wood youngster, who only took up bowls late last season, won the league's Under-18 Merit with a never-say-die show at Allscott.

Buckley, watched by his grandad and Donnington stalwart Doug Worthington, was 12-2 and then 19-12 down against hot title favourite Aaron King in the final.

But the 18-year-old who is already driving, refused to come off second best to Bowring’s Premier League regular and found the determination on a mark using the hollows in the middle of the green to run out to a fine 21-19 triumph.

Buckley accounted for reigning champion Jack France of Newport 21-17 in the semi-finals while King, winner of the league’s Under-15 title in 2013, was beating this year’s winner of that crown, Sinclair’s big hope Harry Church, 21-19.

Organiser Phil King, father of Aaron, thanked hosts Allscott and referee Mike Potter and said: “The winners today have been the kids. There was some great bowling by all of our juniors. We had two cracking semi-finals and a final of two halves.”

Buckley played just eight league games last year but this year is already a regular in Donnington's first division side, having so far won four of his seven games.

Quarter-final results: King 21 Josh Cotton (Wrockwardine Wood) 12; Church 21 Sophie Massey-Jones (Newport) 12; France 21 Justin Pegram (Newport) 15; Buckley 21 Emma Massey-Jones (Newport) 15.

League chairman Sean Round presented the trophy to Buckley after 11 youngsters contested the title on a balmy afternoon marred by just a few spots of rain.


Newport’s Jack France won the Under-18 Merit for the first time by beating Shropshire junior team-mate Ellie Wall (St Georges) 21-15 in the final on Donnington Wood No. 1.

France first accounted for clubmate Sam Millward, who he won the league’s Under-18 Pairs title with last year, 21-14 in the last 16 when the competition was played all onthe evening of Thursday, May 16.

He saw off Wrockwardine Wood’s Sally Clee, the 21-19 conqueror of reigning champion David Lloyd (Bowring), to 10 in the semi-finals while Wall was ending the hopes of last year’s Under-15 Merit runner-up, Jamie Fletcher of Sir John Bayley.

Organiser and county junior selector Phil King was delighted with the size of the crowd that watched the action before it started to rain about 9.15, praising the standard of bowls produced by the 17 under-18s who took part.

Quarter-final scores: France 21 Josh Cotton (Wrockwardine Wood) 17, Clee 21 Ashley Gregory (Hadley USC) 17, Fletcher 21 Phil Jones (Wrockwardine Wood) 16, Wall 21 Chelsea Mills (Shifnal) 7.
The 2012 competition was played all on one night - Thursday, May 17 (6.30pm start) - on both greens at Donnington Wood. There were 22 entries and, after a marathon night, it was DAVID LLOYD - the runner-up last year - who emerged as the new Under-18 Merit champion.
The Bowring youngster, a regular in the county junior side, triumphed at Donnington Wood No 2 by beating Luke Walmsley in the final.
But it was the Wrockwardine Wood bowler who claimed the scalp of 2011 champion Jamie King (St Georges / Hadley USC) 21-5 in the quarter-finals.
Fuller details to follow, but the league's thanks go to Mike Potter and Ric Hudson for running the competition in the absence of Phil King due to work commitments, and to league and county junior selector Rob Burroughs for presenting the prizes.
2011 FINAL
Jamie KIng won his second league title in the space five days when he triumphed in the final of this competition played all on Thursday, May 19, on the two greens at Donnington Wood.
The St Georges bowler made light of being in the middle of his GCSE exams at the Thomas Telford School to get his hands on a trophy he won in 2009 by beating David Lloyd of Bowring 21-16 in the final.
Girl power was well in evidence on finals night with King, who had won the Trading Post junior doubles with Hadley USC's Ashley Gregory at Abbey on the Sunday, beating Ellie Wall 21-9 in his semi-final while Lloyd ended the brave run of Jodie Rutter to 15.