Edinburgh Tournament 2011

Fettes College, 15-20 August

When the lawn marking squad arrived at Fettes on the Thursday before this year's tournament to measure out the courts and make hoop holes, they found that the east boundary of court 1 (the one by the sight screen) was under water, as recent rain had left a large puddle there.  It was perhaps fortunate, therefore, that the numbers of players in the singles events on Monday and Tuesday were smaller than usual, so that the games could be fitted onto the remaining four courts.  Court 1 was marked out on Monday afternoon, by which time the water had subsided, and it was in use for the doubles on Wednesday and for two games on Thursday morning.

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Scottish Open 2011

Meadows, 30-31 July 2011

The 2011 Scottish Open was the most international yet, with players from Scotland, England, Uruguay, Australia and New Zealand.  The two most distant countries were represented in the final, where Australian Kevin Beard won the deciding game against Hamish McIntosh of New Zealand, while in the plate final local player James Hopgood beat Englishman Dave Nick.

Four of the eight seeds had single games against unseeded players in the first round, and two of them were knocked out - Brian Murdoch losing to Bill Spalding (by one point on time), and Bob Burnett losing to Martin Stephenson.  No.1 seed James Hopgood came through comfortably with a +26 against Alan Wilson, but fourth seed Hamish McIntosh had a much closer call in his game with Fergus McInnes.  Hamish had got to peg and 4-back, but he accidentally pegged out his forward ball while rolling towards corner 2, and then missed several shots while Fergus crept round to 4-back and peg.  Time was called in Fergus's turn, and he opted to play his forward ball, putting his other ball in front of 4-back while approaching the peg for the equalising point, but landed further from the peg than he'd intended and then missed it to hand the game to Hamish.

The other seeds had byes to the quarter-finals, and the results there went according to ranking, with Kevin Beard beating Jonathan Lamb (of Uruguay) and Dave Nick beating the other Australian John Levick, while in the other half of the draw James and Hamish had wins over Bill and Martin respectively.

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Wilkinson Sword 2011

17 July 2011, Meadows and Alexandra Park

Five out of six players in the Wilkinson Sword were the same as in the previous three years: Fergus McInnes and Allan Hawke representing the Edinburgh Club, Jamieson Walker and Jola Jurasinska for Meadows, and Bill Spalding for Glasgow.  The newcomer was Richard Sparrow, who took over from Robert Lay as the other half of the Glasgow team.  The Edinburgh v Meadows game was played at the Meadows Club with a 9am start, and then the players decamped to Glasgow for the remaining rounds.

Meadows beat Edinburgh by 19 points, thanks to a nine-hoop break without bisques by Jola which left more than enough bisques for Jamieson to finish.  The game was over by 11am, and the rendezvous at Alexandra Park was accordingly brought forward from 1pm to 12 noon.  Glasgow's first game was against Edinburgh, and this also was completed in about two hours.  Allan got the first big break and went to penult; Bill took a bisque and embarked on a DPO, but broke down at 1-back with one peel done; and with all the bisques gone Fergus went round to the peg (but failed a long speculative rover peel attempt) and Allan finished (+17) in the Edinburgh side's next turn.  So now Glasgow had to play Meadows and required a score of +19 or better to secure the Sword, or +18 to force a tie-breaker.

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The Walker Cup 2011

Meadows, 23 July 2011

Jamieson Walker (left) receiving the cup from the managerContrary to the previous evening's weather forecast, the seven entrants for this year's competition played most of the day in some of the best weather we had seen for some considerable time.

As last year, the competition was run as a Swiss with four rounds of 18 point games, all clips starting on hoop 5.  Full bisques to a base of 10 were then adjusted accordingly for the shortened game.  As best attempts had failed to find an eighth competitor, it required four people to take a bye over the course of the day.  The time limit for each game was set at 1h.45m. + 3 minutes per net bisque difference.

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Secretary Trophy 2011

16 July 2011, Meadows

Robert Inder, winner of the Secretary TrophyWith nine players, this year's Secretary Trophy was run to a flexible Swiss format, and was accommodated on two of the Meadows Club's three lawns - the other one still having puddles on it from the morning's rain at the start of play.  There were some sunny intervals during the day, but the rain returned in the afternoon, accompanied for a while by thunder and lightning.  Each contestant got four or five 14-point advanced games (with lifts after hoops 3 and 5), with bisques computed according to the table in the back of the Laws book, and a 90-minute time limit, which was required in eight of the day's 21 games.

At 5pm there were two players unbeaten, and accordingly the final was contested by these two; Robert Inder came out the victor, with Jola Jurasinska as runner-up.

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