Helliwell’s second Merit win

Bowls - Wilkinson Sword Merit Final at Luddendenfoot BC. Richard Helliwell.
Bowls - Wilkinson Sword Merit Final at Luddendenfoot BC. Richard Helliwell.
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Richard Helliwell won the Halifax League’s Briggs Priestley Merit at Luddenden Foot on Sunday.

He defeated defending champion Mark Regan by 21-4 to claim the Wilkinson Sword Trophy for a second time.

Helliwell, whose first success was in 1988, opened with a 21-10 victory over David Hemsley.

He then faced a quarter-final against last week’s Halifax Association Merit winner Martin Steele. Helliwell trailed 1-4 but then pulled away to lead by 15-6. Steele narrowed the gap to 12-15 but Helliwell won back the jack and went on to win by 21-17.

In his semi-final , against Gareth Nicholson, Helliwell began well to lead by 9-3. Nicholson fought back to level at 10 but Helliwell regained control to win by 21-13.

Regan began with a 21-10 victory over Keith Hatzer before a 21-7 quarter-final victory over Mark Barnett.

In his semi-final, against Ashley Southwell, he opened with a break of eight. Southwell was only one point adrift at 9-10 but he was unable to maintain his challenge and Regan went on to win by 21-12.

In the final, Helliwell dominated from the start. He led by 3-1 before surging ahead with a break of nine to lead by12-1, and finished with break of six to win by 21-4.

First round scores: I. Ryding 3 M. Steele 21; R. Helliwell 21 D.Hemsley 10; K. Bannister 6 J. Hamer 21; J. Watters 10 G. Nicholson 21; P. Gill 13 A. Southwell 21; J. Halliday abs P.Evetts w/o; G. McCafferty inj M. Barnett bye; M. Regan 21 K.Hatzer 10.

Quarter-final scores: Steele 17 Helliwell 21; Hamer 20 Nicholson

A page of bowls news in Friday’s ‘Courier’