A couple of newsletters ago, we banged on about the fact that Hilton Park had made a poor start to the new season.
The facts were there for all to see — 10 wins and 18 losses from the first 28 games. Equally, we were proud to boast that the situation had improved during December to 23 wins and 30 losses from 53 games. Well, guess what? The club has made a poor start to the second half of the season and, up to the Australia Day break, our record had slipped to 29 wins and 42 losses from 71 games.
The consolation is that almost all sides still have eight rounds to play during February and March — eight rounds which will make or break our season. We are not suggesting that anyone has not been trying — but let’s see if we can come up with a big finish and get that win:loss ratio about 50:50.
Tuesday Ladies:- Hilton’s ladies were the first to get the ball rolling in 2019 and started with a great 4-2 home win over top-of-the-league Warnbro 2 by 55 shots to 50. Sandra Watt’s rink was the only winner by 18-10 but it was enough to cover one-shot and two-shot losses in the other rinks.
In Round 10 the ladies met the other Warnbro team away from home but this time they lost 5-1 and by 66 shots to 55. And round 11 brought the same result - a 5-1 home loss to Fremantle. Incredibly, two of the rinks were decided by one shot but Liz Mann’s rink suffered a massive 33-6 loss. These results keep the side in seventh spot on the ladder.
Thursday Men: - The Division Two side started off with a tough trip to windy Warnbro and the 6-0 loss by 79 shots to 33 showed just how poorly Hilton played. For example, it must be some time since a rink skipped by Gary Dodd went down 33-8.
Round 9 produced a disappointing 5-1 loss at home to Rockingham by 60 shots to 50, Robbie Hunter’s 22-19 win the only point for Hilton. But it was back to winning form in round 10 with a 5-1 result over Dalkeith/Nedlands with Craig Standley’s rink taking the honours with a 31-8 result. The team remains in fifth spot on the table.
The Division Four side played like league leaders with a 6-0 home win over Gosnells with each of the three rinks having a comfortable margin in the 81-34 total win.
Another 6-0 win came Hilton’s way as a result of a fine performance at Leeming in round 9. It was a tough game with Ian Blanch’s rink winning by one shot and Barrie Douglas’ rink by two shots in a 63-50 overall success.
The bubble burst only slightly with a 51/2-1/2 win away at third-placed Mt Pleasant in round 10 with only Ian Blanch’s 20-20 draw preventing a clean sweep.
This keeps the team top of the table.
The Division Five side also showed promise of better to come with a 5-1 home win over Kwinana who are sitting on top of the ladder. Tommy James’ rink set the scene with a 15-shot win and Warren Edwards’ rink then secured the points on the last end with a 17-16 win.
But undercover the next Thursday down at windy Warnbro, the Fourths slipped to a 6-0 defeat and by 68 shots to 56 overall. Again, it was hard fought with Peter Baldey’s rink losing by one shot after being two up going into the last end while Peter James’ rink lost by just two shots.
And round 10 brought a satisfying 6-0 home win over Safety Bay with Peter Baldey’s rink hanging on for a 17-16 success.
Saturday Men:- Star bowler Daniel Wood was welcomed back as one of the skips in the Division One South side and his rink and Robbie Hunter’s rink both had four-shot wins over Victoria Park/Carlisle. However that was not enough to avoid a 6-2 loss by a total of 84 shots to 75 in a hard- fought game.
The story was similar in round 10 when the Division One side lost 7-1 at home to Safety Bay with Craig Standley’s rink picking up the solitary point. The side still sits in 8th spot on the ladder with a break for Australia Day.
The Division Three side started 2019 with a loss 7-1 to Fremantle with Vic Philpott’s rink recording the only win so that side is still stuck in last place on the ladder.
Round 10 saw the side hit winning form again with a 6-2 home win over Rockingham by 89 shots to 75. Les Onley’s rink helped secure the points with an impressive 36-11 result. But even with the six points the side is still in last spot on the ladder.
The Division Five side started the New Year with a comfortable 6-0 defeat at Cockburn’s new undercover complex. The bowlers struggled on the synthetic surface and the only close game was from Warren Edwards’ rink who recovered from 19-9 to 19-17 and then lost on the last end.
It was synthetics and undercover again the next Saturday and the result was the same — a 6-0 loss to Kardinya and this time the defeat cost Hilton Park it’s spot at the top of the ladder.
Hard-working committee-man Gary Saint filled in as the club’s greenkeeper during the Christmas and New Year break as regular greenkeeper Daniel Prince took the chance to holiday in Canada. With the weather hotting up, Gary did a great job on the greens and ensured that they were in top condition for the resumption of the pennant competition in January. The club wishes to thank Gary for all the time he put in on the job.
The Hilton ladies have had three club competitions in the first half of the season and the fight to win trophies has been intense. First of all, the Veterans’ Championship was won by Liz Mann with Helen Pryer the runner-up. Then a Scroungers tournament was won by Anne Mauri with Glenice Greenham as runner-up. And, finally, the Championship Triples was a hard-fought competition won by a team comprising Sandra Watt, June Menner and Janice Frater who defeated a triple of Bobi Ward, Val Turner and Carol Read in the final.
The year 2018 ended with two excellent functions at Hilton Park. The first one on Friday, December 28, was the 70th birthday party for club president Ron Turner. The bar was busy that night — as was the dance floor thanks to the musical efforts of Peter Stone and the Hiltones.
A few days later on New Year’s Eve, there was another great turn-out for a function which again had Peter Stone and his group on stage backing up Diamond Dave and the Doodaddies. And let’s not forget the efforts of roast beef man, Big Kev.
Also, to celebrate his 70-something birthday, veteran bowler Chris McMahon organized a mixed doubles competition on a Sunday during the pennant break. Some 16 pairs plus a few reserves took part on a hot day and the final winners after four hour-long games was the pairing of Daniel Wood and Mike Glynn. This event marked Daniel’s return to the club and his skills will be welcomed by Hilton’s First Division side as it battles to avoid relegation.
Then on the first Sunday in 2019, five members who have been at the club for less than two years took part in the Novices’ Championship. Mike De Luis, Graham Harvey and Dave Van de Venn fell by the wayside leaving Mike Glynn and Tony Maxwell to contest the final. And a real treat it turned out to be too, with Mike squeezing home and taking the title with a 21-19 shot win. Well done all.
Who was the dopey Division Five bowler playing on the outside rink at Kardinya who rolled his bowl into the side ditch? Well, at least it was only a warm-up bowl and the bowler managed to avoid that ditch during the game.
Before Christmas, the club managed to fit in a mixed pair’s competition which saw Richard Young and Val Turner defeat Gary Melville and Liz Mann in the final after some tough bowling.
The Mixed 100-Up competition played in January proved to be a great success with some excellent games. The final was then played the following Friday night and it turned out to be a classic. Rob Fortini, possibly the underdog, was playing Gary Saint and the scores were tied at 95-95 after 19 ends.
As it turned out, Rob then grabbed a clean-sweep of 10 to win his first trophy at Hilton. Both players who were happy to pose for a picture.