Ballymena senior bowlers ease into semi-finals of Irish Cup

Ballymena A team prior to the match on Saturday.

Ballymena A team prior to the match on Saturday.

Ballymena A made it safely through to the semi finals of the Irish Senior Cup last Saturday with a 96-56 win over Mossley.

On rink 1 James Gaston, David Duncan, Mark Torrington and Jim Baker were always in control against the Mossley rink skipped by G Bell.

After the first 8 ends it was tight and the Ballymena men held a narrow one shot lead but 8 shots, including a count of 5 over the next 3 ends set the tone for the rest of the match with the home rink recording a 27-13 victory.

The Ballymena rink of J R Nicholl, George Graham, Alistair Coleman and Steven Coleman took on E Crawford on rink 2.

This match never seemed to going any way but a Ballymena win as the home rink raced to a 9-0 lead after 4 ends.

After 15 ends this lead had been extended to 24-5 in favour of the Braid men and although the Mossley rink won four out of the last 5 ends it was not enough and the home rink ran out 25-10 winners.

It was a very different story on rink 3 where Alan McAuley, Chris Wilson, Steven Falls and Andrew Morrison had a very tough battle against the Mossley rink skipped by S Strange.

It was a tight game with never more than 4 shots between the two rinks.

The Mossley rink were 3-0 up after 2 ends and the Ballymena men rallied with a single and a count of 3 to put them in front, however this would be last time they would be until the 16th end when the home rink took a slender 1 shot lead after trading shots over the 12 ends.

However the visitors won 4 out of the last 5 ends to record a narrow 17-15 victory.

Rink 4 saw the Ballymena rink of Steven Shields, Neal Garrett, Roy Torrington and Andi Duncan take on the visiting rink skipped by R Bell. Like rink 2 this never looked in question as the home rink came out of the blocks quickly with counts of 5,3,3 to take an 11-0 lead after 3 ends.

A fightback was on with the Mossley rink collecting 5 shots over the next 3 ends, but this was halted by another count of 5 to the Ballymena men on the 7th end.

After 15 ends the visiting rink had clawed their way back to within 6 shots with scoreboard showing 20-14.

However this was as good as it got for the visitors as the Braid men finished the game strongly to run out 29-16 winners.