ALFORD Hall A completed the first part of a potential Warrington and North Cheshire Bowls Association Monday Night League ‘double’ by claiming Challenge Cup success on Saturday at Burtonwood with a hard-fought victory over a spirited Longbarn team.

Longbarn ran the favourites close with the match going down to the last two games.

Warrington Guardian: Alford Hall with the Challenge CupAlford Hall with the Challenge Cup (Image: Contributed)

Steven Lea struck the first blow in the opening match with a 21-15 win over Wayne Sixsmith. Further wins then followed for Liam Sullivan (21-20) and John Brown (21-15).

Longbarn captain Dave Conroy rounded off the first four with a tight 21-20 win over Mike Bishop who fought back from 19-7 down to gain a valuable 13 chalks that would prove crucial to the overall score.

Bishop took the ‘Man of the Match’ award for his fine comeback effort.

Longbarn rattled off the next three winners with former Section A player Jason Lockett defeating the luckless Damian Carroll 21-2 with some fine short mark play.

Neil Burrows (21-15) and N Jordon (21-18) provided Longbarn’s other two wins in the middle four. Mike Mannion claimed Alford’s only success in the middle with a comfortable 21-7 victory. With the last two games remaining, outsiders Longbarn held a two-shot advantage.

Alford’s last two, captain Matt Brown and Kyle Chapman, eventually put paid to Longbarn’s cup dream with 21-11 and 21-17 wins steering the Manchester Road club to cup glory for the first time since 2019.

Challenge Cup Final results: Longbarn 169 Alford Hall A 181: W Sixsmith 15 S Lea 21, M Cooke 20 L Sullivan 21, Nick Burrows 15 J Brown 21, D Conroy 21 M Bishop 20, Neil Burrows 21 J Hallett 15, N Jorden 21 C Morris 18, J Lockett 21 D Carroll 2, P Bate 7 M Mannion 21, G Lee 11 M Brown 21, N Bouch 17 K Chapman 21.

Warrington Guardian: Alford captain Matt Brown receives the Challenge Cup from Warrington and North Cheshire Bowls Association secretary Alan Rogers Alford captain Matt Brown receives the Challenge Cup from Warrington and North Cheshire Bowls Association secretary Alan Rogers (Image: Contributed)

Before the Challenge Cup, Grappenhall and Tetley D met in the Finlayson Cup Final and the first four matches saw each side gaining two winners apiece with reserve Andy Worrall (21-12) and Mike Widdocks (21-11) claiming the Grappenhall victories with Tetley’s successes coming from Ray Goodhand (21-12) and Graham Cowell (21-15).

Honours were shared in the middle four with Tetley’s John Corless edging John Davies 21-20. Grappenhall’s captain Brian Fox responded with a 21-9 win over Jack Vizard to claim the ‘Man of the Match’. After eight games, Grappenhall held a 15 chalks lead.

Tetley’s claimed the last two matches with wins from Tony Heaton (21-17) and Maurice Bramhall (21-15), but Grappenhall held on for a 5 shots victory.

Finlayson Cup Final results, Grappenhall 179 Tetley D 174: 1 A Worrall 21 v C Grimes 12, 2 E Hughes 12 v R Goodhand 21, 3 S Armitage 12 v G Cowell 21, 4 M Widdocks 21 v B Littlewood 11, 5 A Davies 16 v J Bramall 21, 6 J Davies 20 v J J Corless 21, 7 E Frangleton 21 v P Birmingham 16, 8 B Fox 21 v J Vizard 9, 9 S Huetson 17 v T Heaton 21, 10 C Hart 15 v M Bramhall 21.

Warrington Guardian: Grappenhall crown green bowls team with the Finlayson CupGrappenhall crown green bowls team with the Finlayson Cup (Image: Contributed)

Grappenhall now head to the Warwick Lowe finals day at Monks Sports on Monday, 28 August, 6.15pm start.

Grappenhall take on St Oswald’s A and current holders Woolston A go up against Grange B.