Shropshire Star

Plenty of action as silverware is handed out

Eight club finals packed into one weekend kept the flat green bowlers of Lilleshall Hall busy in the grounds of the National Sports Centre.


It was a particularly hectic time for Mike Bradburn, who played in three of the crunch games as the knockout competitions came to a head, while the rivalry of the club’s leading ladies went up another notch on day two.

Lilleshall competition secretary Quentin Smith explained after Sheila Payne beat Ruth Lowe 21-17 to land the Frank Richards Cup: “These ladies are great friends, but fiercely competitive, so this final promised great bowls and didn’t disappoint.

“Sheila found six unanswered shots in three ends to lead 19-12 but no one was surprised when Ruth picked up five shots in the next three ends to get back to 17-19 - before Sheila found two shots in the next two ends, the last a draw to within inches when several shots down, to take the game.

“The win brings Sheila’s tally to five (2011, 2017, 2020, 2021 & 2023), but Ruth still holds the record with six wins (1996, 2003, 2004, 2009, 2016 & 2019).”

The day two action started with the Mike Caird Cup in which Mike won the trophy he donated by beating Ruth Lowe 7-7, 11-2.

Peter Hancock eventually converted a 17-10 lead to beat Mark Hussell 21-17 in a top class Tarmac Cup final and it was tight too in QRS Cup climax as Barry Geal beat Tony Forrester 21-15 from 14-12 adrift.

Bradburn’s first outing ended in defeat as he lost to Rod Payne in the Nuway Cup final 21-11, but things improved for him on the Sunday.

Having missed out on the Cyril Davies Cup when beaten 21-13 by Colin Meadows, Bradburn got his hands on the Roy Warburton Cup by beating Geal 21-14

The final of the Pairs Shield saw Mike Caird & Quentin Smith beat Sheila & Rod Payne 19-13, a five on the 17th end proving crucial as the Paynes graciously conceded without playing the final end.

“Unusually, Mike & Quentin were the only defending champions in this year’s finals.” added a club spokesman.

“Their win extends their club record to seven wins – and both also have wins in the competition with other partners.”


Lilleshall President Kath Matthews presented the winners cups to Sheila Payne (Frank Richards Cup) and Mike Bradburn (Roy Warburton Cup)