The final round of the East Midland Winter League took place on Sunday and it turned out to be a day of mixed fortunes for two of our local sides, Browning Hotrods and Sensas Mark One.
Maver Image were two points clear at the top of the leader-board going into the final round on the Factory Bank and the Old Nene at Benwick and duly won the league, albeit with a third-place finish on the day.
But the battle for runners-up spot and a semi-final match at Lindholme Lakes was not so straightforward.
Sensas Mark One only needed to finish in the top three to claim runners-up spot, but slumped to fourth on the day.
That left the way clear for Browning Hotrods, who left their best performance of the season until last and dominated the final round taking first place on the day with a 23-point score.
That meant they tied on points with Mark One for second place.
It then went down to match placings, but amazingly they still had identical scores. So it was decided on overall section points over the six matches which saw Browning Hotrods take that all-important second place by just four points scoring 175 to Mark One’s total of 179.
Hotrods also had the added pleasure of seeing team men Rob Wright and Steve Welford take the top two individual places.
Wright took the honours from with 24lb 5oz of roach taken from the prolific Factory Bank.
Drawn halfway along the section, he caught all day feeding squatt and catching short-lining at 10 metres. At the end of the length was Welford, who took second place with 19lb 1 oz, all taken on the pole with pinkie over groundbait.
Andy Mead came third with 18lb 12oz, again fishing the pinkie and groundbait combination.
Top rod over the whole series and winner of the Stacey Cup was Maver Image rod Alistair Ogilvie with eight points. He had the same score as Welford but a better weight over the six matches.
Browning Hotrods skipper Tim Nash was full of praise for his side.
He said: “Our performance and the result felt like we’d won the league. I’m dead proud of the team.
“Our team result on the day was amazing. Abbi Kendall was our ace in the pack. After a great season with the England ladies team she gained a brilliant second in her section pretty much all on the waggler and that takes some skill.”
Result: 1 R. Wright, Browning Hotrods, 24lb 5oz; 2 S. Welton, Browning Hotrods, 19lb 1 oz; 3 A. Mead, Stanjay Gold, 18lb 12oz; 4 A. Moss, Browning Hotrods, 18lb 10oz; 5 G. Miller, Maver Image, 18lb 8oz; 6 C. Oakman, Browning Hotrods, 17lb 15oz.
Teams: 1 Browning Hotrods, 23pts; 2 Stanjay Gold, 27; 3 Maver Image, 29.
League: 1 Maver Image, 12pts; jt 2 Browning Hotrods and Sensas Mark One, both 15.
Stacey Cup Winner: Alistair Ogilvie.