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April 10, 2008
Preview One Blue South Finals:
Saturday’s washout was a huge disappointment, not only did it prevent what could have been great contests to determine promotion it did not give the sides battling to prevent relegation from having a say in the demotion.
The question has to be asked of BowlsWA why has the pennant program been allowed to meander along to the point where here we are in mid April and still to complete the finals. Surely the answer is to start the season earlier to ensure this does not happen again; a lot of clubs will be sitting back now contemplating what may have been if they could have played last Saturday.
On to this weekend and hopefully better weather, we have seen Hilton Park earn the promotion to One White finishing two points clear of Manning with Osborne Park a further two points behind in third spot Spearwood finished fourth, Rockingham rounds of the final five.
The finals will be played at the home of the Manning Eagles, home ground advantage will be a huge factor this weekend the other participating sides will have to adapt quickly or their tilt at the last spot for promotion will evaporate by the end of the first game.
The best part is the Grand final will be a true grand final where the winner takes all in this contest, loser has to come back to this division and try again. That is the way it should be
FIRST SEMI FINAL
Manning Eagles (2nd) v Osborne Park (3rd)
This game finds both sides having the double chance, win this and you move into Sunday for the deciding game, lose and you take on the winner from the Second Semi-Final in a cutthroat match to decide who plays Sunday.
Manning will take on Osborne Park they have both earned the double chance, in their previous encounters this year we have seen in round one Manning at home 86 shots for six points to Osborne Park 83 for two points in that game John Francisco and Bill Pengilly dominated for the home side.
In the second round at Osborne Park the Park returned the favour by hammering the Eagles to the tune of 28 shots to finish up 91 shots for seven points to the Eagles 63 shots for one point, dominating on that day for the Park was Keith Guelfi and Rance Dewson.
Milan Jokic Manning (pictured) Has had a great season and will be looking to cap it off by winning the promotion for Manning Eagles
This encounter will have all the drama, Manning will feel robbed at not having the chance to take on Hilton Park last Saturday, they would have been confident in displacing Hilton from the top spot; now they have to battle it out to move into Sunday’s deciding final.
Both sides boast strong skippers, Manning with the likes of the best performed rink in the entire One Blue South division that of Bill Pengilly along with great support from Milan Jokic, while Osborne Park have their best performed skipper of this season Rance Dewson along with brothers Keith and Cliff Guelfi, this will be a close encounter; Osborne Park have lost the One Blue North side to relegation and will be very keen to ensure this side takes the next step.
Cliff Guelfi Osborne Park (pictured) Has played a valuable role as skipper to help his team to compete in the finals
Manning equally have been knocking on the door for promotion for a number of years, they lost key players at the start of the season yet still managed to finish second on the table it speaks volumes of the depth of the playing squad and the ability of the club to recruit replacement players.
The result in this game will be as close as the first round with Osborne Park narrowly accounting for Manning
the result will be Osborne Park moving into the Sunday final to await their next opponent.
SECOND SEMI FINAL
Spearwood (4th) v Rockingham (5th)
Both these sides have only one chance, lose this game and its home time, win and you take on the loser from the First Semi-Final in the afternoon game to decide who will play on Sunday.
Spearwood will play Rockingham, both sides have a history of finals action games through the qualifying rounds are usually dour affairs; in round one Rockingham handed a lesson to Spearwood to the tune of 38 shots to pick up 6½ points to Spearwood’s 67 shots for 1½ points on that day Ron Mentiplay and Mr Reliable John Lethlean were in top form.
In the second round Spearwood at home picked up 93 shots for 6½ points to Rockingham’s 74 for 1½ points, on that day Tonko Fiamengo and Italo D’Ascenzo dominated the game. In this encounter winner takes all, both sides will go all out to stay in the contest to play in One White, both sides have been on the verge of promotion only to stumble at the last hurdle in past years.
Tonka Fiamengo (pictured) Top class skip who has been in charge of the best Spearwood rink this season
Rockingham were top of the table up to the 9th round from that point on they seem to have lost their way, Spearwood also visited top spot for a number of rounds only to succumb to top four sides these sides are evenly matched the competition will be hot,
the result will be Spearwood to advance to the Saturday PM game to decide who will play on Sunday.
PLAY OFF FOR THE PENNANT
Wanneroo (1st ) v Hilton Park (1st)
What a great game we have in store to see who will win the Pennant with both these terrific sides earning automatic promotion and to compete for the only pennant flag in the Blue North/South, I can feel the excitement right now and wish I could be at the game to see it.
It might help provide an answer to the age old question "who has the strongest zone. North or South"
Wanneroo have been fantastic in the way they have won their way thru to win promotion and the opportunity to win a pennant that actually means something. Wanneroo were clearly the best side in their division.
The rink of Doug Watson have led the way for most of the season his rink was the performed rink in the One Blue North division. 12/4/1 + 63
Look at the Hilton Park line up where they have the almost unbeatable Brad Ball's rink who have lost just 1 game 10/1 + 107 and the brilliant David Opie led rink who have 12/2/1 + 127
Other big names that come to mind are Ken Boswell, Peter Flack, Echo Widermanski, Geoff Gunning, ?? Broad, Derek Bowen to name a few for Wanneroo
For Hilton Park there is Travis Simpson Luke Garbutt, Keith Stahan, Darryl Milbourne, Eddy Clarke, Chris McMahon and Jeff Slade are some that come to mind.
Chris McMahon Hilton Park (pictured) A class player doing a great job at the front end
This should be an absolute cracker of a game
Because I have to select a winner, let me say I have had a lot of difficulty to reach my decision as to who will win the pennant
the result will be Hilton Park to win the Pennant