Agonising for Andy in National Singles

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ARBROATH’S Andy Furye narrowly missed out on lifting the National Singles title at Ardrossan at the weekend.

After a hard fought 21-15 victory over Dumbarton’s Kenny Paton in Saturdays semi-final, Andy faced previous winner Ian McLean from Blantyre in Sunday’s final.

And he got off to the best possible start, winning the first four ends to go 5-0 up, but Ian soon found his feet and scored on the next four ends to lead 7-5.

Counts of three on the 10th and 11th ends helped Andy regain the lead and he seemed to be taking control of the match. Shots changed hands over the few ends with Andy just managing to keep his nose in front.

At 19-15 he looked liked sealing victory with a match lie, only for McLean to remove Andy’s three bowls from the head with a great strike and score two shots himself.

McLean then went on to have his best end of the match and drew three bowls within only a few centimetres of the jack. Andy, with his last bowl of the end, had a chance to trail the jack and score the two shots he needed for victory but was just under the line and lost a three to put McLean one shot away from victory.

The shot changed hands the next end with the first four bowls played and with Andy lying one shot, Ian drove the jack to the ditch to put the pressure back on Andy. With only about a yard between Ian’s bowl and the jack, Andy drew in for shot but Ian with his last bowl drew the perfect shot to lie game.

Andy now had the chance to chap and lie on Ian’s bowl and score two and win the match himself. Unfortunately, although he made contact with Ian’s bowl, it wasn’t enough to turn it in the ditch and McLean scored the one shot he needed for victory.

It was the second time in three years Andy has been defeated in the final of the National Singles, losing out in 2009 to Elgin’s Mike Stepney.

It is back to league fixtures this weekend when Arbroath’s gents team entertain Bon Accord looking to maintain their position at the top of the Second Division.

Arbroath’s ladies make the long trip to Auckinleck where only victory can keep their chances of catching Premier Division leaders Midlothian alive with only two games remaining.