Helliwell’s runaway final success

Champion of Champions bowls competiton at Greenroyd Bowling Club. From the left, Richard Hargreaves, Chloe Hirst, Martin Steele, Pam Wood, Brian Winrow, Robert Holmes, Richard Helliwell, John Hamer, Jean Gornall, Keith Powell, David Hemsley, Mark Regan, Tony Bannister and Ben Halliday.
Champion of Champions bowls competiton at Greenroyd Bowling Club. From the left, Richard Hargreaves, Chloe Hirst, Martin Steele, Pam Wood, Brian Winrow, Robert Holmes, Richard Helliwell, John Hamer, Jean Gornall, Keith Powell, David Hemsley, Mark Regan, Tony Bannister and Ben Halliday.

Richard Helliwell won the Halifax Association’s Quality Stoves-sponsored Champion of Champions competition at Greenroyd BC on Sunday.

He beat Brian Winrow by 21-2 in the final.

Helliwell faced a tough opening game against defending champion Mark Regan but was soon into his stride, taking a 14-6 lead. Regan fought back to reduce the lead at 14-18 but Helliwell held on to win by 21-16.

He carried this form into his second game against Jean Gornall, establishing a 10-1 lead before winning by 21-11.

Helliwell’s semi-final against Tony Bannister was a diferent story. Bannister hit a length immediately to take a 8-0 lead and was still ahead by 16-5. Helliwell struck back with a break of nine and although Bannister regained the advantage to reach all-but with his opponent on 17, Helliwell produced a final push to snatch a 21-20 victory.

Winrow had one extra game to play, coming through a preliminary round match against Bernard Megson by 21-15.

In his second game, he trailed the 1996 champion Robert Holmes by 2-8 before recovering to draw level at 11. The scores were level again at 17 and 19 before Winrow claimed victory by 21-19.

Winrow beat Keith Powell by 21-14 in his quarter-final against but was behind by 6-13 in the semi-final against John Hamer, the 2012 winner.

From 12-18 down, he took the lead with a break of seven and, after a single by Hamer, took the last two ends to win by 21-19.

In the final, Helliwell reached for the corners and bowled immaculately to lead by 13-0.

Winrow counted a pair at the next end but Helliwell won back the jack immediately, reverted to his favoured mark and ran out.

First round scores: T.Bannister 21 R.Hargreaves 17, B.Halliday 6 D.Hemsley 21, M.Steele 17 J.Gornall 21, M.Regan 16 R.Helliwell 21, P.Wood 19 C.Hirst 21, J.Hamer walkover, K.Powell walkover, R.Holmes 19 B.Winrow 21.

Quarter-finals: Bannister 21 Hemsley 11, Gornall 11 Helliwell 21, Hirst 16 Hamer 21, Powell 14 Winrow 21.