By Eric Markham
The pennant on Saturday 30 January saw a battle of the top four contenders.
Monbulk 1 who were in fourth place took on Ferntree Gully who were in third place on Monbulk’s home green.
Geoff Petersen’s rink had a close affair early with scores locked together after eight ends. They then won six of the next eight ends to lead by seven shots and were able to hold the lead winning 20 to 15.
Eric Markham’s rink never settled into the game and were outbowled to lose 31 to 12.
Brian Smith’s rink struggled to stay in touch early and at the half way mark were 11 shots down. They then clawed their way back to be within six shots after 14 ends, but lost the last seven ends to go down 25 to nine.
Richard Cookson’s rink started well and were seven shots up after three ends. However, they dropped seven shots on the fourth end which meant scores were level. They had few blemishes from then on, winning comfortably 27 to 15.
Monbulk remain in fourth place losing the overall 86 to 68.
Monbulk 2 played Ferntree Gully away from home and were hoping to cement their place in the top four.
It turned out to be a very close contest across all four rinks. Graeme Gollier’s rink started slowly and were seven shots down after six ends. They then won five of the next seven ends to get within four shots.
However, a couple of multiples in the next three ends meant they were 11 shots down with six ends to play.
The Monbulk rink lifted and won the next five ends to give themselves a winning chance, but lost the last end to go down 22 to 18.
Eric Furby’s rink began well and were seven shots in front after five ends. Their opponents then came back and in a game of tight bowling they got within two shots with six ends still to play.
The Monbulk rink then won four of those six ends to win 17 to 14.
Case Broekhof’s rink held sway early and led by three shots after six ends. They then increased their lead to six shots after 12 ends, but won only one of the last nine ends to go 22 to 16.
Norma Clerke’s rink were seven shots down after six ends, but then went on a winning streak to be level after 15 ends. They won three of the last six ends, but dropped a four-shotter which proved the difference losing 18 to 15.
Monbulk lost the overall by 10 shots, 76 to 66 and are just holding their position in the top four.
Monbulk 3 travelled to Mulgrave Country Club and took great delight in their grass greens.
Peter Donders’ rink kept the opposition scoreless in the first five ends and led by seven shots. They won a majority of ends and finished up, 14 to 9. Alan Brookes’ rink also kept their opponents scoreless in the first five ends and led by nine shots. They were able to maintain this lead and won 17 shots to 8.
This gave Monbulk the overall win, 31 to 17.
Mid week pennant in Division 1 saw Monbulk travel to take on the highly fancied Vermont South.
Eric Markham’s rink found it hard to get on the board early and after four ends trailed by seven shots. They then won the next four ends to be within one shot.
However, their opposition proved too steady and the Monbulk rink went down by 20 to 12.
Richard Cookson’s rink bounced out of the blocks and were 12 shots in front after four ends. The Monbulk rink dropped four multiples in 10 ends and after 15 ends there was only one shot the difference.
They then won five of the last six ends to run out clear winners, 28 to 19. Ivan Baric’s rink found the going tough and at the half way mark were 14 shots behind. They improved in the second half being able to match their opponents but lost 27 to 11.
This meant Monbulk lost the overall 66 to 51.
Monbulk 2, who were third on the ladder, played Chirnside Park who were second at home. Eric Furby’s rink started slowly, but then worked themselves into the game to be level at the half way mark.
They were very close over the rest of the match and with one end to go the Monbulk rink led by two shots. However, they dropped a four on the last end to go down 22 to 20.
Alan Hamilton’s rink were six shots down after eight ends, but then picked up a six-shotter to level the scores.
By the twelfth end they were three shots in front, but then dropped 10 shots in the next three ends to trail by seven shots.
They made up some ground in the run home but went down 22 to 17. Graeme Goller’s rink were two shots down after nine ends, but then fell away winning four more ends to lose 23 to 11.
This meant Monbulk lost the overall 67 to 48.
Monbulk 3 played Noble Park at home and were looking for a win to improve their position at the lower end of the ladder.
Graeme Seymour’s rink were well in the game and bowling well when they led by six shots after 12 ends.
They then won only two of the last nine ends to go down 18 to 16.
Bruce Cockerill’s rink was level after the ninth, eleventh and fifteenth ends.
However, they dropped a six on the second last end which put paid to their winning chances and they lost 19 to 11.
Mike Harris’ rink started well, but were no match for their opponents winning just seven ends and eventually going down 29 to 13.
Monbulk lost the overall 64 to 40.