May King of the Hill – After the Challenger series in 2022 which proved pretty popular with bowlers, I decided to hold some more King of the Hills at Dunstable. Last year they were all on Kegel Challenge Patterns, but we’ve done titanium, chromium and the others to death now. So for 2023 I thought we would go for the Kegel Landmark Patterns.
The pattern for this event was BIG BEN ! – It’s one of the easier landmark patterns.. but this is the first in the series of 5 summer tournaments and I wanted to start off with a nice gentle one, also this is the pattern the seniors are bowling on in the forthcoming Triple Crown Event… BIG BEN… this has nothing to do with bowling – but BIG BEN facts… The name ‘Big Ben’ actually refers to the bell inside the clock tower. It has helped keep London on time for 157 years ! Big Ben is the largest four facing clock tower in the world! Big Ben was what Ben Robinsons PE teacher used call him when he got out the showers.
A bit about these events – The idea is a friendly tournament that will give the bowlers a chance to bowl in an local event on a Kegel “Landmark” pattern. I want to give bowlers a chance to bridge the gap between league/house pattern bowling and an elite “Sports Tournament”. Thanks to our sponsors we are able to keep the price down so it will give you space to learn and grow as a Tournament bowler. I want bowlers to learn and test themselves but at the same time not feel too pressured by the bowling environment – And I hope this series of events will enable you to do that.
Tournament usually is 6 games qualify played at doubles pace, but I was over subscribed with entries so I changed it up to 5 games played a trios.. which allowed me to fit 14 more bowlers in.
The lefties were having a field day…
The top 3 scores Scratch were
Basher Bonfield 1114 a 222.8 average (lefty kinda)
James McMinn 1215 a 243 average (lefty)
Ben Robinson 1224 a 244.8 average (lefty)
Thanks to the tournament manager securing some sponsorship for the event it meant we had some extra prize money.
We had £10 high game for each of the high game
Game 1 – Jamie Hayes 266
Game 2 – George Patel 266
Game 3 – Big Ben Robinson 259
Game 4 – Big Ben Robinson 266
Game 5 – James McMinn 256
The top 3 in handicap section were
Russell Minns 1124 (lefty)
Joe Cooper 1167 (Lefty)
Brandon Antoniou 1180 – RIGHT HANDED – 10 YEARS OLD !!
So before we got into the finals we had the fun pot games… first up was ‘Basher on the 1 and 2s’ … a bowler Randomly drawn (using google random number generator) – they would have 1 ball to take the 10 pin clean out… which wins you a £10 – but then you can go “double or nothing” and try for the 7 pin clean out to win a total of £30 – several people got drawn out… the closest we got was Jon Keating, and Alan Keddie both taking the 10 pin clean… both took the double or nothing option and both couldn’t hit the 7 pin clean… so no winner !
We also had the ‘Basher Money shot’… again a bowler chosen at random would get one ball to get a strike and win themselves £30. Russell Minns was drawn out… lefty… it would have been harder for him not to of thrown a strike… 10 pins in the pit and £30 in his back burner… And because I was feeling generous, I decided to give another bowler a chance… next name out was Jordan Hit man Hart. Jordan had just finished 4th in the scratch section averaging 219, so it was no surprise to see him step up a get a strike for £30
Step ladder finals
Into Match 1
Joe Cooper with zero handicap against another Lefty Russ Minns who had a 23 pin head start. Game went to the 10th with Russ throwing a nervous 8 count leaving a sleeper spare. Russ covered it and got the count to win 194-190
Basher vs James McMinn – McMinn had played a much better qualifying block, but in the match play couldn’t get anything going and Basher capitalising by seeming carrying everything… Basher going through to the title match 225-186
Before the final .. let me give you some context… Brandon Antoniou was top qualifier in the handicap section. He’s 10.. in qualifying he hit his highest ever game – 165 ! he’s never bowled in a tournament before.
So Russ had 100pins to catch up.. and Brandon naturally very nervous with everyone watching him ditched his first delivery – and those watching were all probably thinking that Russ was reeling Brandon in. Especially as Russ starting stringing the strikes together. We get to the 10th frame.. Brandon has played brilliant to even still have a chance.. he needs a spare and 9 count to win. He gets the spare… now he needs 9… the little kid has worked out what he needs, he got loads of people watching… he only goes and hit the pocket for a 9 count for the win !!! – 259-258… Everyone including Russ was really happy for him. He definitely got the biggest cheer of the tournament!!
Basher – old, grizzly, battle worn vs Big Ben fresh faced, keen, fit and GOOD ! surely no contest. To be fair as usual Basher rode his luck. A 7-10 in the pocket from Ben and then a stone cold 8 pin in the 10th frame from Basher meant Basher finally won one of his own tournaments !! 208-206
Thanks to all the bowlers – 42 ! brilliant support from the bowling community.
To Alison for doing the scoring using the spreadsheet expertly designed by a friend of mine.. who might want to remain nameless, because, well because bowling can get political and unnecessary sometimes.
To Sukky and Bradders for helping out.
To Andy Penny for ensuring the pattern was all loaded into the machine
And of course to our brilliant sponsors.. whose support allows us to have some fun, and offer a decent prize fund.
SD Carpentry Ltd – https://www.facebook.com/sdcarpentryltd
Travel with the Smiths – https://www.facebook.com/travelwiththesmiths
S&T Autos – http://sandtautos.net/
Sundon Model Shop – https://www.facebook.com/sundonmodelshop
KPeach Floor and Wall Tilling – https://www.facebook.com/kpeach.wallandfloortiling
One Stretch Beyond – https://onestretchbeyond.com/
The next event is on June 11th – entry will be open soon and the will be posted in the event group page https://www.facebook.com/groups/1123770395141402
We also streamed the event and you can find the video on my twitch channel https://www.twitch.tv/basherback2back
Money shot winner Russ Minns with One Stretch Beyond owner Rob Durrant
3rd place scratch and Handicap – James McMinn and Joe Cooper
2nd place Scratch – Big Ben Robinson
WINNERS – Basher and Brendan Antoniou