Larne team proves too strong for Donegal

The Donegal Zone team convenor Fred Aiken, umpires William Cassells, Sam Moore and Denis Croot, with the Larne Zone team convenor James Burns before the Inter Zone Shield Final. INLT 09-044-GR

The Donegal Zone team convenor Fred Aiken, umpires William Cassells, Sam Moore and Denis Croot, with the Larne Zone team convenor James Burns before the Inter Zone Shield Final. INLT 09-044-GR

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Larne defeated Donegal to win the final of the Zone Plate competition on Saturday at a packed Blue Circle.

The home team dominated the first half with some terrific bowling. Alan McLean led the charge with a fine seven-shot win.

Simon Bell was also on top of his game and steered his rink to a superb nine-shot success. Andy Thom’s quartet battled to a narrow three-shot defeat, which meant Larne carried a 13-shot advantage into the second half.

The visitors came out all guns blazing at the restart and the young Larne skips found themselves under pressure. Nigel Todd’s drive shots were a feature of his game and, despite a narrow loss, he was very effective throughout.

Mark Petticrew exchanged big scores through the opening ends but managed to steady the ship to claim a draw.

Darren Witherspoon’s four started well but found themselves battling an onslaught through the final ends and lost out by two.

The rink results were irrelevant as Larne had done enough to win the match and the trophy.

Rink scores: G Woods, St Bell, S Beggs, A McLean won 11-4; S Witherspoon, D Snoddy, M Murphy, S Bell won 13-4; D Bodles, S Dalrymple, T Bodles, A Thom lost 9-12; R McCrudden, E Wilson, Br Petticrew, N Todd lost 9-10; J Kane, A McCord, C Snoddy, D Witherspoon lost 9-11; J Burns, J Semple, A Rankin, M Petticrew drew 10-10.

n In the league, LB&LTC claimed a maximum seven points at home to Blue Circle and Whitehead were in similar mood when they entertained Rangers again winning on all rinks.

First Larne took four-and-a-half points off Ballynure.

Cairndhu hit top form last week recording five-point wins at Craigyhill and at home to title contenders Kilwaughter.

They will hope to maintain this momentum when they play St Cedma’s in the Engraver’s Shield final (March 9).