New Zealanders’ Visit to Scotland

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Following the cancellation of the Abergavenny Seniors Challenge between Wales, Scotland and New Zealand, eight of the New Zealanders said they were visiting Scotland and asked if the SPA could arrange a match for them against a Scottish Seniors team.

Their visit coincided with the SPA Scottish Triples weekend so it was decided to play the match on the Saturday and invite the NZ players to join in the ‘Plate’ on the Sunday.

The match was held at Inverleith Park and hosted by the Inverleith Petanque Club on Saturday 18th September.

Saturday was, thankfully, a fine autumn day and the teams assembled for an eleven o’clock ’kick off’.

The four New Zealand teams of Trevor & Sue, Bob & Colleen, Jean & Charles and Bill & Lynn were joined by Colin M & Nigel to make up five teams (so five rounds could be played) lined up against John P & Allan M, Bob B & Dave P, Jean & Henry H, Sandra B & Douglas H and John tartan trews W & Pat M.

At lunch time, after two rounds the score was 5 – 5 and after four rounds the score was

10 all, so all to play for in round five! Bob & Dave, having romped through four rounds, had their wings clipped by Jean & Charles however three of the remaining games four games went Scotland’s way and the final result was Scotland 13 – New Zealand 12.

After a most friendly encounter enjoyed by all, we retired to the Clubhouse for a veritable feast provided by Mags and her crew. After the Selkirk Grace, beautifully delivered by Pat, we all tucked into soused herring followed by haggis, tatties and neeps and finished of with fruit crumble and custard! All of us appreciated the effort put in by Mags, Colin and members of Inverleith Petanque Club for what was a grand day with great crack and most important of all meeting and making new friends from the world of Petanque.

Douglas.

Birds & Bees Charity Pairs

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A Charity Pairs competition was hosted by the Birds and Bees Petanque Club at the Birds and Bees in Causewayhead, Stirling on 12 September.

By 9:45 on a surprisingly sunny and warm early autumn Sunday morning 20 keen players assembled in the Birds and Bees car park. Why the car park? Well, the gate to the courtyard was locked and when manageress Jemma arrived at 10:15 she announced that no one had come “to knock her up” – what sort of thing is that to say on a Sunday morning!

20 players, 10 teams, 4 pistes – how was Bob going to fiddle that? – easy peasy – two leagues of 3 and one of 4 and the morning’s play commenced.

The teams were – Pres. Byron & Sandra M, Zandra & Bob B, Jimmy & Margaret W, Carol B & Judy C, Paul & Pierre B, John & Norma C and Judy’s grandsons Thibault & Matthew (pronounced Tibo) from the Birds and Bees and Jean & Henry H, Alice S & Stuart M and Eileen M & Douglas H from Perth.

After an excellent lunch of soup and sandwiches the top 4 teams from the morning leagues played for the honour of being ‘top team’ of the day.

The remaining 6 teams fought it out for the non existent plate via Bob playing his ’fiddle’ again!

The above resulted in Paul & Pierre coming from behind to beat Jean & Henry 13-10 to be ’Top Dogs’. Oh no, the Perons are back! Jimmy & Margaret were third.

Eileen & Douglas, surviving some excellent pointing from young Thibault and accurate shooting from Matthew – keep playing guys the SPA needs you, hung on to win the ‘Plate’ 13-11.

Another sociable open competition, only one ‘fanny’- no names no pack drill! was as usual with B & B competitions run immaculately by Bob and enjoyed by all.

Douglas.

SPA Masters 2010

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SPA MASTERS 2010 was hosted by Troon Petanque Club on their piste at Marr Rugby Club over the weekend of the 04th and 05th of September.

Troon, the venue for the 2011 Home Nations, was chosen for the Masters to give the eight teams qualifying for the CC the chance to experience the piste.

The twelve teams and 41 players (five teams have 4 players) represented clubs from Inverness (1), Fochabers (3), Perth (2), Stirling (2), Inverleith (3) and Troon (1).

With a ‘round robin’ format, 6 games were played on Saturday and 5 games on Sunday.

Saturday was a sunny and warm day and the players, breakfasted and with score cards in hand, were on parade by 9:30.

Umpire for the weekend Byron M welcomed the teams and asked for a good clean fight, reminded teams that slow play would be penalised – he would be ‘watching’ – get it! – and the fewer times he was called upon the happier he would be.

The day ended with the Pisteols in the lead on 6 out of 6 closely followed IPA on 5 wins and the Bears, Les Champignons and Maboules were still in the hunt with 4 wins each.

Sunday, again fine weather , progressed and by lunch time IPA had caught up with the Pisteols on 8 wins each, Goldilocks and two Bears having spoiled the Pisteols 100% game plan.

Showdown time – high noon plus two – game 10 – Pisteols vs. IPA – Pisteols prevail, win their 11th game and retain the Scottish Masters Trophy.

IPA held on to second place on points difference from The Bears. Les Champignons, also on points difference, pipped Maboules for 4th place.

European Championships 2011 – Scottish representatives – Pisteols.

Home Nations 2011 – teams 1 to 4 qualify as Scotland 1, teams 5 to 8 as Scotland 2

Home Nations 2011 – teams 1 to 8 qualify.

Thanks to Derek for organising the competition, umpire Byron and to Troon Petanque Club members for their hospitality and sustenance – the goulash and chilli was yummy!

The full result of SPA MASTERS –

1st – Pisteols (1st) Paul B, Robbie S, Lynn J and John W. – 10w +83

2nd – I P A (2nd) Derek A, Stefan M and Colin S. – 8w +52

3rd – Bears (9th) Marion MacI, Mike W and Alex D. – 8w +33

4th – Champignons (4th) John W and Colin & Mags M. – 7w +43

5th – Maboules (7th) Zandra B, Dani C, Douglas H and Bob B. – 7w +14

6th – Midgitiers (6th) Susan A, Dave P and Norma & John C. – 6w +10

7th – Acorns (10th) John J, Malcolm McK, Istvan P and Brian W. – 5w -18

8th – Cabbage and Ribs (8th) Fiona & Howard T and Emma M (no Ben B). – 4w -18

9th – Pretty Vacant (5th) Chris S, Richard C and Shirley L. – 4w -26

10th – Capercaille (11th) Jean H, Ian S and Stuart M. -3w -52

11th – Pointiers (12th) Henry H, Alice S and Ed S. -2w -47

12th – Nord Ecosse (3rd) Christine & John M and Pat & Gordon S. – 2w -54

(Numbers in brackets represents 2010 GP Series placing)

Douglas. 06/09/10

SPA Singles, Shooting & Doubles 2010

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The SPA Singles and Shooting on Saturday 21st and the SPA Doubles on Sunday 22nd of August were held at Perth Petanque’s Piste on the North Inch in Perth.

Saturday’s weather forecast wasn‘t promising, however the early morning scotch mist didn’t turn to rain and the sun put his hat on and came out to play!

Players from The Birds and Bees, Fochabers, Inverleith, Inverness, Perth and Troon numbering twenty five turned up on parade.

Twenty five, an awkward number, were formed into eight leagues – seven of three players and one of four players and battle commenced.

Sixteen players qualified and were divided into two modified Swiss leagues, the winner of each league to play off for the honour of lifting the Trophy.

After some close games Paul B of the Bees met John W of Fochabers in the playoff to decide who was to be Singles Champion 2010.

Paul took the early initiative and built up a commanding lead but uncharacteristically gave away six points in two ends and John didn’t look back and emerged the winner!

John, normally a man of few words, was ecstatic, announcing –

“It’s taken me twenty six years and six finals to win the Scottish Singles!”

Robbie S, Fochabers, prevailed over Mari S Inverleith, in the third/fourth playoff

SPA Singles Trophy –

Winner – John Wilson.

Runner Up – Paul Bretenoux.

Third – Robbie Stronach.

Fourth – Mari Snell

The other players were –

Derek A, Paddy H, Stephane M, Mags & Colin M, and Fiona & Howard T, – Inverleith,

Christine & John M, Pat & Gordon S and Christine, Calum & Stewart T – Inverness,

Douglas H, Jean & Henry H and Frazer S – Perth.

Malcolm McK, Istvan P and Brian W – Troon.

The Shooting Competition, set up by Brian, Istvan and Malcolm, was run at the same time as the Singles. Most of the players entered in the Singles tried their hand at the Shooting Competition. With three team leagues in the Singles those sitting out took their turn at competing and scoring. Eight ‘tireurs’ qualified for the knockout stage ending up with Derek A meeting and defeating Colin M in a low scoring final.

SPA Shooting Trophy –

Winner – Derek Adam.

Runner Up – Colin Montgomery.

Semi-finalists – Robbie Stronach and Istvan Poka.

Sunday loomed sunny, bright and breezy!

Thirteen teams, made up of most of Saturdays worthies, from The Birds and Bees, Fochabers, Inverleith, Inverness, Perth and Troon turned up to compete for the SPA Doubles Trophy.

Note the odd number again! So three leagues of three and one of four for the morning session with eight teams qualifying for the Trophy and a modified Swiss in the afternoon

leaving five (odd!) teams for the Plate, so a five team league, games played to nine points.

The Bad Boys – Dave P & Bob B were on fire, powering their way to a showdown with an equally upbeat pair The Acorns – Istvan P & Brian W to decide the2010 Doubles Champions.

The Acorns retained the coche and ground their way to 10,11,and 12-4 but then The Bad Boys won an end and changed the direction of play to across the piste and at 10-12 Dave dragged the coche to his first two boules and a 13-12 victory!

SPA Doubles Trophy –

Winners – The Bad Boys – Dave Patterson & Bob Boyle – Birds and Bees.

Runners Up – The Acorns – Istvan Poka & Brian Ward – Troon.

Third – Pisteols – Robbie Stronach & John Wilson – Fochabers.

SPA Doubles Plate –

Winners – The Champignons – Mags & Colin Montgomery – Imverleith.

Runners Up – The Campers – Jean & Henry Hutcheson – Perth.

The other teams were –

Almost Vacant – Chris S & Richard C – Fochabers,

Frado – Frazer S & Douglas H and Just Us – Eileen M & John S – Perth,

Gie Us the Viskey – Mari S & Bill McM and I P A – Derek A & Colin S – Inverleith,

Nord Ecosse1 – Gordon S & John M and Nord Ecosse2 – Pat S & Christine M – Inverness,

The Umps – Byron M – Birds and Bees & Stefan M – Inverleith.

Thanks to Derek A for organising play, to Perth members for hospitality and with fair weather and a good turn out an excellent weekend was enjoyed by all!

Inverleith Quaich Melee

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On a sweltering hot summer Sunday we expected a good turnout for our melee and saw twenty participants from Ayr, Twechar, Stirling, Drymen and Perth. This being quite a result as attendances at opens lately are quite worryingly small. We breakfasted royally while the most complicated draw in the Scottish calendar was ably plucked from the ether and we settled down to days competition on the, now four different surfaces offered for play at the sumptuously situated venue.

A break for lunch of stovies and gateaux washed down with beer or wine saw the resumption of an epic battle between the three contenders, namely Henry from Perth, Derek and the flying Finn, Mari both from Inverleith. At the end of the day Hendry and Mari were both undefeated with Hendry winning on points followed by Derek who lost out to Mari in the final game .

The melee format still still stands up as the most social and pleasant form of a game rich with these virtues already, and Inverleith thank our new team of helpers for making the day run like clockwork.

Monty

William Leishman Memorial Trophy

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The William Leishman Memorial Trophy was held by the Ayr Petanque Club on 11th July.

Only eleven players – six from Ayr and five Perth – turned up, albeit on a damp and stormy morning to compete for the WLM Trophy on APC’s piste at the Scottish Bowling Centre in Ayr.

Where have all the flowers – sorry players – gone?

It is a sad reflection on the state of our sport when, for the third Club competition running the Bees, Perth and now Ayr could only muster ten, ten and eleven players respectively.

Come on guys and dolls, the clubs that hold open competitions need your support!

With the weather improving, positively Mediterranean – well nearly! – after lunch, four teams were formed, three triples and a double using, once again, Adrian’s unique ’card trick’ method and played a four game round robin.

The destination of the WLM trophy ended up in the hands of Jean H (Perth), Adrian F and Stuart K (both Ayr) with 3 wins and more points than Mabel D and Douglas H (both Perth) also with 3 wins but short on the points front.

The other teams were Ray M (Ayr) with Alice S and Henry H (both Perth) and Enid G, Raymond K and Stan B (all Ayr) with 1 win each.

Not withstanding the lack of numbers and with the help of APC’s most generous raffle the sum of £90:01 – yes 1 penny, who was the cheapskate! – made up to £100:00 by Adrian’s wife – was raised for William Leishman’s designated Charity.

Thanks to Adrian and APC‘s members for an enjoyable day and we all arrived home well in time for the for the World Cup Final!

Douglas.

Perth Petanque Finlay Morrison Memorial

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The Finlay Morrison Memorial Pairs was held at the North Inch in Perth on 4th July.

On a most unpleasant morning, raining cats and dogs and an almost flooded piste, 5 teams from Perth – I don’t blame others from the provinces for not turning up – paddled their way to the sanctuary of the clubhouse for croissants and coffee. After some debate – “och, lets ging hame” was the cry – we decided to pit our skills(!) against the elements which had somewhat abated to a drizzle.

Drizzle, rain, cloud, sun – yes sun! – thunder and lightning, hail, downpour and dogs we had it all but the 5 teams played 4 games each resulting in Stuart M winning the Trophy for the second year running.

The teams were Stuart M and Douglas H – 4 wins; Margaret M and Mabel D – 2 wins; Eileen M and Pat M – 2 wins; Alice S and Frazer S and Jean and Henry H – 1 win each.

Regardless of the fickle weather we didn’t get too wet and were home by 3:30!

Douglas.

Birds & Bees Pairs

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A Pairs competition was hosted by the Birds and Bees Petanque Club at the Birds and Bees in Causewayhead, Stirling on 13th June.

On a pleasant calm, sunny and warm early summer Sunday morning 5 teams, rolled up bright and early to the Birds and Bees.

The teams were – Zandra and Bob B and Jim and Margaret W, from the Birds and Bees, Jean and Henry H, Alice S and Douglas H, and Eileen M and Pat M from Perth, and that’s your lot!

So the 5 teams played 4 games each and ended up with Zandra and Bob B with 3 wins and more points than Alice S and Douglas H with 3 wins and less points winning the day and two bottles of wine each.

As there was such a small turnout everyone received a bottle of wine which was most generous of the Birds and Bees Club as the entry fee was £3:00 per person and the wine was £4:50 a bottle!

So, a good friendly open competition, immaculately run by Bob, was enjoyed by all.

SPA Grand Prix 3 2010

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SPA Grand Prix 3 was hosted by Fochabers Petanque Club on Sunday 6th June.

Players representing clubs from Inverness, Fochabers, Perth, Stirling, Inverleith and Troon registered thirteen teams to play in GP3. Maybe the forecasted weather kept some of the other teams away for the final round of the GP Series.

The format was a seven round Snake and, with fortification from Gavin’s supply of Tea and Coffee along with a delicate display of biscuits, the teams awaited the decision of the umpire as to whether the piste was playable. After much deliberation and, with the rain looking as if it might clear, the go-ahead was given and the teams splashed onto the piste.

Some big team names seem to falter in this final round which led to some new team names appearing in the top 3. Once more one of the last games on the piste was crucial with Capercaillie overcoming Cabbage and Ribs to snatch 2nd place with four wins. In third place was Nord Ecosse of Inverness also with four wins.

However it was the Midgetirs from Stirling with 5 wins who triumphed in Grand Prix 3.

Thanks to Derek for organising the competition and keeping the league table up to date to ensure the teams knew what was required to qualify. Also thanks to Byron for umpiring the event. Finally, thanks to the Fochabers club for their hospitality and for hosting the final round of the Grand Prix Series.

The result of SPA GP3 –

1st – Midgetirs – Susan A and John & Norma C. – 5w +12

2nd – Capercaille – Jean H, Ian, S & Stuart M – 4w +19

3rd – I P A – Derek A, Colin S and Stefan M. – 4w +17

Grand Prix Series Result

The top 3 teams for the Grand Prix Series are as follows

1st – Pisteols – Paul B, Lynn J, John Wilson and Robbie S. – 13w +82

2nd – I P A – Derek A, Colin S and Stefan M. – 13w +35

3rd – Nord Ecosse – Gordon S, John & Chris M – 11w +30

The twelve teams who qualified (in alphabetical order) are as follows:

Acorns – John J, Istvan P and Brian W.

Bears – Gavin H, Mike Wand Alex D.

Cabbage and Ribs – Howard & Fiona T, Emma M and Ben B.

Capercaillie – Jean H, Ian S and Stuart M.

Champignons – John Watson and Mags & Colin M.

I P A – Derek A, Colin S and Stefan M.

Maboules – Zandra & Bob B, Dani C and Douglas H.

Midgetirs – Susan A and John & Norma C

Nord Ecosse – Pat & Gordon S and John & Christine M.

Pisteols – Paul B, Lynn J, John Wilson and Robbie S.

Pointiers – Alice S, Henry H and Ed S.

Pretty Vacant – Chris S, Richard C and Shirley L

Margaret Burden Memorial Pairs

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The Margaret Burden Memorial Pairs open competition was contested on 30th May by 9 teams.  The disappointing turn-out could have been due to a number of factors, it being a bank holiday weekend with a poor weather forecast perhaps?  Those who did make it, from Troon, Perth and Twecher, had to contest with changeable weather.  The morning was very cool, but, following a sharp downpour the sun did make a very welcome appearance in the afternoon.  Inverleith Park was full of tents for the Taste of Edinburgh Food Festival but they too appeared to suffer from a disappointing turn-out; there was no sign of the long queues of last year.

The morning’s play comprised of 3 leagues of 3 teams each.  The winner of each league and the best second place would go on to contest the main competition with the rest competing for the plate.  Despite their being only 3 rounds in the morning, the leagues were not fully decided until after 2 p.m.  so some players had to wait for their stovies for quite a while.

It was necessary, to avoid play going on too late, to restrict games in the plate to 11 points, and following some keenly fought games Jean and Henry (Perth PC) were victorious against John W (Birds & Bees PC) and Christine (Inverleith PC) in the Plate final.  Jean retained her Plate having won it in 2009 with Frank Malcolm.

The main competition was a round robin.  In third place came John P and Allan (Inverleith PC) with one win, Brian and Therese (Troon PC) were second with 2 wins, but retaining their title were Mags and Monty (Inverleith PC) with impressive dominance throughout the afternoon – winning all of their games.

Many thanks to all who contributed to the day, with special thanks to Chris and Stephen Burden for selling raffle tickets and to Gladys and John Porter for their culinary delights; the stovies were very welcome on this chilly day and wouldn’t have been out of place at the Taste of Edinburgh, indeed it is rumoured that Heston Blumenthal has asked for the recipe!

Over £200 was raised which will be donated to St Columba’s Hospice.

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