CORNWALL'S Premier team beat Devon at Carnmoggas in the ESMBA Inter County Championship on Sunday, producing a stunning comeback across the two afternoon sessions to overturn a 4-12 deficit at the lunch break to win 24-16 and keep alive their hopes of qualifying for the Premier One Knockout competition, writes Nicholas Truscott.

In the first session, sole points scorer for Cornwall was Luke Jolly with a 12-10 win in the Singles.  

The second session saw Jon Read, Mark Slack of Duloe, and Mike Dyer, take Cornwall’s only points with a 19-8 win in the Triples.  

Halfway through the match Cornwall trailed four points to 12 and 86 shots to 98.

The third session saw Cornwall take eight of the 12 points on offer.  

In the Singles, Nigel Nicholls and Luke Jolly won 23-11 and 13-9 respectively, ensuring Cornwall also claimed the Singles bonus points.  

In the Pairs. Elise Daniell and Kevin Williams won 16-14.  

Cornwall still trailed 12-16 in the match overall with a session to play.

The final session was all Cornwall, as in the Triples, Read, Slack and Dyer won 13-7 and Austen Runnals, Ray Jeffery and Duloe’s Martin Boraston won 16-7, ensuring the Triples bonus points by a margin of 23.  

In the Fours Morgan Lees, Mark Payne, and Landrake duo Richard Kerr and Neil Gribble won 12-6, and Sandra Worton, John Worton, Nicholas Truscott & Peter Hore won 14-8 to overturn the nine-shot deficit from the morning session and claim the Fours bonus points.

The final match score was Cornwall 24 points 202 shots, Devon 16 points 188 shots.  

In the other South West group match played on Sunday, Dorset were big winners away to Somerset by 34 points to six.

Premier Team Scores: Singles – Nigel Nicholls (Newlyn Trinity) 13-16 & 23-11, Luke Jolly (Holmans) 12-10 & 13-9

Pairs – Kevin Williams (Porthleven) & Elise Daniell (Holmans) 7-15 & 16-14, Steve Smith (St Newlyn East) & Simon Lees (Newlyn Trinity) 11-13 & 9-28

Triples – Mike Dyer (Newlyn Trinity), Mark Slack (Duloe) & Jon Read (Duloe) 19-8 & 13-7, Martin Boraston (Duloe), Ray Jeffery (Newlyn Trinity) & Austen Runnals (Luxulyan) 10-13 & 16-7 

Fours – Neil Gribble (Landrake), Richard Kerr (Landrake), Mark Payne (Penzance) & Morgan Lees (Newlyn Trinity) 8-11 & 16-6, Peter Hore (Holmans), Nicholas Truscott (Holmans), John Worton (St Newlyn East) & Sandra Worton (St Newlyn East) 6-12 & 14-8.

With all counties having now played five games, Dorset lead with 125 points, Devon are second with 119 with Cornwall third on 109 and Somerset trailing with 47.  

The final fixtures take place on Sunday, January 7, with Devon hosting Cornwall at the Manor House Hotel, Okehampton, and Dorset entertaining Somerset at the Dorset Bowls Resort, Bere Regis.  

These fixtures fall on the same weekend as the Short Mat Players Tour British Open in York, with a number of Cornwall and Devon players currently entered in that tournament.  

For Cornwall to qualify for the Premier One Knockout competition, 26 out of a possible 40 points will be needed from the final fixture.   

The A Team went down to a heavy defeat after trailing by only two points at the lunch break.  

The first session saw one win for Cornwall scored by Saltash’s David Cole and Rita Hancock in the Pairs with a 14-11 victory.

The second session saw an advantage for Cornwall with wins for Graham Luke, Landrake’s Graham Reeves and Duloe’s Alan Trubshaw in the Triples 20-14 and Landrake’s Heidi Kerr, Steve Williamson, Tony Jago and Dobwalls’ Brenda Sleep in the Fours 9-7.  

Landrake’s Dianne Shorthouse, Saltash Kernow’s Paddy Spear, Duloe’s Caroline Trubshaw and David Topliff drew 8-8.  

Cornwall trailed 7-9 at the lunch break.

The afternoon session saw Cornwall score only four out of a possible 24 points.  

Mark Williams won 17-10 in the Singles, and the Cole and Hancock pairing completed a double with a 16-11 win.  

Cornwall failed to pick up any of the bonus points, going down to an 11 points to 29 and 154 to 238 shots defeat.

The result leaves Devon at the top of the group with 86 points, Dorset second with 63 and Cornwall with 51.  

Cornwall need 13 points from the last match away to Devon to secure second place and qualify for the knockout stages.

A Team Scores: Singles – Dennis Shorthouse (Landrake) 8=20 & 6-20, Mark Williams (Lanteglos) 9-19 & 17-10.

Pairs – Rita Hancock (Blisland) & David Cole (Saltash) 14-11 & 16-11, John Dodd (St Newlyn East) & Carol Dodd (St Newlyn East) 9-18 & 6-18.

Triples – Ken Horrell (Withiel), Eileen Williams (Lanteglos) & Meg Horrell (Withiel) 8-21 & 5-18, Alan Trubshaw (Duloe), Graham Reeves (Landrake) & Graham Luke (Withiel) 20-14 & 7-18.

Fours – Brenda Sleep (Dobwalls), Tony Jago (Withiel), Steve Williamson (Luxulyan) & Heidi Kerr (Landrake) 9-7 & 10-13, David Topliffe (Boscastle), Caroline Trubshaw (Duloe), Paddy Spear (Saltash Kernow) & Dianne Shorthouse (Landrake) 8-8 & 2-12.