Stuart Smith Hoops early on in the doubles match with John Guy, against Cliff Daniel and Nigel Pigdon

Report by team captain John Guy

On 23rd May the Broadwas team of Stuart Smith (handicap 4.5), Ian Dampney (7), David Kaner (16) and captain John Guy (5), welcomed Kenilworth to the Broadwas lawns in the first match in the West Midlands Association Croquet League.

Kenilworth are the reigning champions and brought a very strong team comprised Adrian Morris (3), Cliff Daniel (4.5), Mervyn Harvey (8) and Nigel Pigdon (11). The Broadwas team knew they were facing a hard match especially since our practice on the lawns had been severely limited due to the short amount of time the lawns had been open.

On the day, the weather was very chilly with a stiff breeze and the non-stop rain the previous day had made the lawns spongy in places and very slow. Even Stuart couldn’t hit a ball the length of the lawn. Overall, it was a difficult day to play Association Croquet.

Stuart and John sit it out in the cold during the early morning’s doubles match

In the morning, the Kenilworth team adapted to the conditions better than Broadwas with Adrian overcoming Ian Dampney 26 – 15 and Cliff Daniel and Nigel Pigdon beating Stuart and John in the doubles 16 – 14 on time.

John Guy pictured during his doubles match with Stuart Smith, against Cliff Daniel and Nigel Pigdon

The only victory for Broadwas was when newcomer David Kaner, who used his bisques to good effect, beat Mervyn Harvey 26 – 11.

An early hoop for David Kaner in his game agains Mervyn Harvey

At lunch, Broadwas were 2 – 1 down and needed to win at least 3 of the afternoon’s 4 games of singles.

Lunch taken in the clubhouse offered a brief respite from the chill winds. Together with some much needed hot drinks the Broadwas players seemed to be energised and at the beginning of the afternoon session, they started to get to grips with the difficult conditions.

Stuart beat Adrian 26 -7, while John beat Cliff by the same 26 – 7 score, while Ian beat Mervyn 26 – 13.

Ian Dampney pictured in action during his game against Adrian Morris

All of these games finished well within the allotted 3 hours so Broadwas found ourselves  4 – 2 up and winners of the match. David completed the match by beating Nigel 21 – 11 on time so the final score was 5 – 2 to Broadwas.

Well done to the team on a great fightback. Lets hope that in the remaining league games we can continue this form, but hopefully in somewhat warmer weather.

John Guy