The BUTBA Tour returned to MFA Firth Park, Sheffield once again this season, this time for the annual combination handicap Quads competition, hosted by the University of Sheffield. With many students competitors still delighting over some brilliant performances from the BUCS Championships, held here in late February, and a difficult oil pattern, in the form of a modified WTBA Stockholm, to compete on, it promised to be an interesting competition.
Doubles – Squad One
The day kick started with the first set of the doubles, in which half of each quads team played a three game series. On the student side, Birmingham’s A team started off the day well on the touch conditions, with their first doubles team of Sam Bond and Roshni Patel both bowling over 20 pins above average on the first game, with Bond scoring 198 (247 handicap) and Patel scoring 105 (243 handicap) and finishing on a 1405 team series. Loughborough B’s first doubles team of Adam Mealand and Roy Meng also started off the day promisingly, scoring a team series of 1377, with Mealand bowling a 692 (425 scratch, including a 259 handicap game) and Meng bowling a 685 (466 scratch) series. Finishing off the first set of the doubles just 5 pins behind Loughborough’s B team was Matt Burbury and Evan Swann, representing Wolverhampton. Wolverhampton, being a new team on the BUTBA Tour this season truly have made their mark, with Burbury bowling a 664 (379 scratch) series and Swann bowling a massive 708 (324 scratch) series, including a 257 handicap game (129 scratch). Nottingham also looked strong after the first three games, with their B team of Tom White and Mike Hales scoring 717 (615 scratch) and 641 (377 scratch) respectively, to lie on 1358 half way through the teams doubles sets.
Over on the ex-student side, the scores seemed to be generally lower, with many bowlers finding the patterns tough. Charlie’s Childish Chucker’s took an early lead in the competition, with their first doubles team of Lee Burrows and Louise Parker scoring 1256 over their three game series, with high games at the start from Burrows. Die Angst Des Kelger Beim Sieben-Zehn Spaltung’s were close behind, finishing after the first three games on a 1255, with Tom Sharp bowling a 576 (309 scratch) and Andrew Stratford bowling an impressive 679 (271 scratch). Both Marks’s Magic and DILLIGAF, becoming well known names in the ex-student division of the BUTBA Tour, also bowled well on the difficult conditions, with Paul Marks and Kayla Knight, representing Marks’s Magic scoring a 1240 overall, with a 648 (543 scratch) from Marks. DILLIGAF were represented by Joe Crook, scoring 588 (492 scratch) and Phil Manning, scoring 620 (563 scratch), finishing on a 1208 handicap team series.
Notable series in Doubles – Squad One:
– Patrick Whelpdale (Sheffield C) – 690
– Matt Harris (Loughborough A) – 682
– Joe Harrison (Birmingham C) – 678
Doubles – Squad Two
For the students, Nottingham fought back in the second squad of the doubles, with the other half of the teams members bowling to form a combined four-person score, this time in the form of their A team, with Frazer Bowen bowling a 697 (529), including a 255 (220) game, and Charlotte Richardson, who has become a well known female competitor on the BUTBA Tour this season, scoring a massive 728 (476) in her first set, bowling 277 (193), 224 (140) and 227 (143). Birmingham C were just 34 pins behind Nottingham A in the second squad of doubles, scoring 1391 overall, with Reena Kaur bowling a 680 (353) series and Amanda Brown bowling an impressive 711 (312), making Nottingham and Birmingham the definite universities to watch this season. Wolverhampton, still in high spirits after a good first set, scored well in the second set, with the second half of their team, Ian Ashcroft and Anthoney Gathercole scoring a high 1389 series, with Ashcroft scoring 674 (335) and Gathercole on a 715 (328). Salman Salman from Sheffield’s C team also managed to score in the 700’s, with a 703 (397) helping him and doubles team-mate, Ian Keeling, bowling a 654 (432), to push their way up the tables.
Paul Williams and Dave Abbot of Chink in the Armor scored well, boosting their team up the tables with a 1364 doubles handicap series, with a massive 723 (597) series from Abbott, including a 255 (213) and a massive 280 (238) game. Tom Chuter, representing Three Bowlers and an Alcoholic Ginger Bearded Hobo along Aiden Wright in the doubles, adjusted to the conditions very well in his first series, scoring a massive 761 (656) series, bowling 235 (200), 257 (222) and 269 (234). Lads on Tour bowlers Jack Adams and Tom Prickett also bowled well, finishing on a 1233 doubles handicap series, with Adams bowling a 580 (502) and Prickett bowling 653 (476), including a 237 (178) game. Liam Grainger and Jez Swann of Sexy Pete’s Hot Pants found the conditions hard, but Grainger was still able to score a 653 (561) to help his team climb the ex-student tables into a top 5 position by the end of the doubles.
Notable series in Doubles – Squad Two:
– Dan Clarke (Birmingham B) – 707
– Simon Parker (Sheffield B) – 705
– Poppie Simmonds (Birmingham A) – 701
– Natasha Kirkup (Loughborough A) – 694
Standings After Doubles
4th – Sheffield C (2670)
Doubles 1 – Matt Scott and Patrick Whelpdale (1313)
Doubles 2 – Salman Salman and Ian Keeling (1357)
3rd – Birmingham A (2749)
Doubles 1 – Sam Bond and Roshni Patel (1405)
Doubles 2 – Georgina Overy and Poppie Simmonds (1344)
2nd – Wolverhampton
Doubles 1 – Matt Burbury and Evan Swann (1372)
Doubles 2 – Ian Ashcroft and Anthoney Gathercole (1389)
1st – Nottingham B (2783)
Doubles 1 – Tom White and Mike Hales (1358)
Doubles 2 – Frazer Bowen and Charlotte Richardson (1425)
4th – Marks’s Magic (2429)
Doubles 1 – Paul Marks and Kayla Knight (1240)
Doubles 2 – Matt Warmington and Mark Bloor (1189)
3rd – Die Angst Des Kelger Beim Sieben-Zehn Spaltung’s (2464)
Doubles 1 – Tom Sharp and Andrew Stratford (1255)
Doubles 2 – Richard Pate and Stacey Spencer (1209)
2nd – Three Bowlers and an Alcoholic Ginger Bearded Hobo (2483)
Doubles 1 – Ollie Lush and Chris Lane (1189)
Doubles 2 – Tom Chuter and Aiden Wright (1294)
1st – Chink in the Armor (2545)
Doubles 1 – Dan Chan and Dan Frazer (1181)
Doubles 2 – Paul Williams and Dave Abbott (1364)
In the student division, Birmingham tried hard in the singles to push Nottingham off their top spot, with both their A and C teams coming in the top three of the singles, with Poppie Simmonds (A), scoring a massive 755 (359) series, including a 259 (127) game, and Reena Kaur (C), bowling an equally impressive 695 (368). Alex Castle, from Sheffield A, secured the second highest singles series with an impressive 711 (583), with a 244 (201) game. Wolverhampton kept themselves on the map, with Anthoney Gathercole scoring 676 (289).
Scores on the ex-student side were, once again, much lower on handicap, but they still managed to bowl a number of good scores. Andrew Stratford impressed in the singles, scoring a 660 (252) series, bowling a 201 (66), 225 (90) and 231 (96). Antony Lakey finished just 20 pins behind on handicap, scoring 640 (568), with consistent games. Sexy Pete’s Hot Pants pushed themselves into a top 3 position after the singles, with Pete Thornley (not wearing hot pants on this occasion) scoring a 636 (525) series. DILLIGAF once again made themselves known, this time with new team player, Danny Crook, who scored a 611 (545) series.
Standings After Singles
4th – Nottingham B (3337), with Tom White bowling a 554 in the singles
3rd – Birmingham C (3350)
2nd – Wolverhampton (3457)
1st – Birmingham A (3504)
4th – Three Bowlers and an Alcoholic Ginger Bearded Hobo (3018), with Aiden Wright bowling a 535 in the singles
3rd – Sexy Pete’s Hot Pants (3059)
2nd – Die Angst Des Kelger Beim Sieben-Zehn Spaltung’s (3124)
1st – Chink in the Armor (3130), with Dan Frazer bowling a 585 in the singles
Birmingham A kept their winning streak up in the trios, with three of their four bowlers (Georgina Overy, Sam Bond and Roshni Patel) bowling high scores, to finish on a team handicap series for the trios at the top of the trios table with a 2131, including massive handicap series’ from Bond and Patel of 755 a piece, with Bond bowling a 608 scratch series, and Patel a 341. Wolverhampton also kept up their high scores throughout the competition, with Matt Burbury, Ian Ashcroft and Evan Swann scoring a team handicap series of 2021, including a 690 (306) from Swann and an impressive 734 (395) from Ashcroft. Birmingham’s C team of Kian Mistry, Joe Harrison and Amanda Brown weren’t far behind Wolverhampton for the trios series, scoring a 1975 overall. Just missing out on a top three position in the trios standings, Nottingham B seemed to be struggling as the day went on, though still scoring a respectable 1940 for their trios series, helped by a 676 (424) series from Charlotte Richardson.
Lads on Tour dominated the ex-student section in the trios standings, with Chris May, Jack Adams and Tom Prickett scoring a 1901 handicap team series, some 34 pins ahead of Die Angst Des Kelger Beim Sieben-Zehn Spaltung’s, with their trios team of Tom Sharp, Richard Pate and Stacey Spencer lying on a 1867. With Tom Chuter keeping up his high scores, scoring a 667 (562) in the trios set, him and fellow trios teammates, Ollie Lush and Chris Lane, scored an overall team handicap series of 1860. DILLIGAF once again got themselves in the top 4 scores of the series, just 2 pins behind Three Bowlers and an Alcoholic Ginger Bearded Hobo, lying on a 1858, with high scores in particular from Phil Manning, bowling a 684 (627) series, including a 255 (236) game.
Notable series in Trios:
– Adam Maxwell (Nottingham A) – 696
– Roy Meng (Loughborough B) – 689
Standings After Trios
4th – Nottingham B (5277)
3rd – Birmingham C (5322)
2nd – Wolverhampton (5458)
1st – Birmingham A (5635)
4th – Lads On Tour (4871)
3rd – Three Bowlers and an Alcoholic Ginger Bearded Hobo (4878)
2nd – Chink in the Armor (4969)
1st – Die Angst Des Kelger Beim Sieben-Zehn Spaltung’s (4991)
With scores close at the end of the trios sets, all was still to play for in the quads, and with all teams finally united together as one to bowl. Birmingham’s B team, keeping the university at the top of the tables, including an exciting first game in which Shaun Parsons fought it out with Steve Atkinson until the last frame, with Parsons scoring 301 (257) to Atkinson’s 270 (246), intensifying the competitive atmosphere to an all time high, which seemed to rub off on the whole centre. Birmingham A once again, to no surprise, dominated the student quads scores, with their team coming together to bowl a massive quads handicap series of 2830, with all team members bowling above 670 handicap series, including a 674 (398) from Georgina Overy, a 707 (311) from Poppie Simmonds, a 716 (569) from Sam Bond (including a massive game of 283 (234), and an outstanding 733 (319) from Roshni Patel. It was Sheffield C who fought back in the last leg of the competition with some high scores, scoring the second highest series of the quads, yet still over 150 pins behind Birmingham A, scoring 2678 with their team of Salman Salman (650), Ian Keeling (707), Matt Scott (698) and Patrick Whelpdale (623). Loughborough also fought back, this time with their C team of Mark Hodds, Matt Harris, Natasha Kirkup and Brad Stone, scoring 2673 overall in the quads, including a 708 (561) series from Harris and a 709 (433) series from Kirkup. Birmingham C, dropping slightly, but still keeping themselves near the top of the bunch scored 2672, just 1 pin behind Loughborough C in the quads, though saw very high series from Joe Harrison (679), Amanda Brown (699) and Reena Kaur (708). Birmingham’s B team, keeping the university at the top of the tables, including an exciting first game in which Shaun Parsons fought it out with Steve Atkinson until the last frame, with Parsons scoring 301 (257) to Atkinson’s 270 (246), intensifying the competitive atmosphere to an all time high, which seemed to rub off on the whole centre.
In the ex-student section, Lads On Tour dominated once again, with their team of Antony Lakey, Chris May, Jack Adams and Tom Prickett scoring a handicap team series of 2564, including a 687 (510) series from Prickett and a 690 (612) series from Adams. Chink in the Armor were close behind Lads on Tour in the quads standings, with a 677 (551) series from Dave Abbott helping team mates Dan Chan, Dan Frazer and Paul Williams to a 2555 handicap team series. Three Bowlers and an Alcoholic Ginger Bearded Hobo, once again saw high scores from Tom Chuter, scoring a 674 (569), including a massive 286 (251) game. Aiden Wright finally found his line in the last set, scoring a 655 (622). With a 656 (422) and 563 (395) series added on from their teammates, Three Bowlers and an Alcoholic Ginger Bearded Hobo finished on a handicap team series for the quads of 2548. Sexy Pete’s Hot Pants managed to push themselves up the tables slightly in the quads, with team mates Jez Swann, Liam Grainger, Pete Thornley and Alex Fitzpatrick bowling a 2452 handicap series, with a 710 (605) series from Grainger.
Notable series in Quads:
– Evan Swann (Wolverhampton) – 679
– Rachel Hodds (Loughborough B) – 679
– Anthoney Gathercole (Wolverhampton) – 693
– Frazer Bowen (Nottingham B) – 713
Presentation and Overall Standings
In the student section, it was no surprise that Birmingham dominated the prizes, firstly with Shaun Parsons taking Male High Game Scratch with a 257, Joe Harrison taking Male High Game Handicap with a 285 and Sam Bond taking Male High Average with an impressive 188 average for his 9 games. Female High Game Handicap was won by Nottingham’s Charlotte Richardson with a 277, with Rachel Hodds from Loughborough taking the Scratch Game prize, for a 212. Hodds also won the Female High Average with a 167 for her 9 games.
Nottingham also won the Doubles section, with their team of Frazer Bowen and Charlotte Richardson on a team series of 1425. Birmingham A impressively cleaned up the remainder of the section prizes, with Poppie Simmonds winning the Singles section with a 755, Georgina Overy, Sam Bond and Roshni Patel winning the Trios section with a 2131, and the four combined bowling a 2830 to win the Quads section. Roshni Patel was also the Most Improved student on the day, bowling an incredible 27 pins above average. Unsurprisingly, Birmingham A won the competition overall for the student division, with a combined team handicap total of 8465, 360 pins ahead of runners up, Wolverhampton (Matt Burbury, Anthoney Gathercole, Ian Ashcroft and Evan Swann), finishing on a 8105.
In the ex-student division, Tom Chuter not only picked up Male High Game Scratch for his 251, but was also awarded Male High Average for a 198, including being the Most Improved ex-student on the day, bowling 13 pins above his entering average. Male High Game Handicap was won by Chink in the Armor’s Dave Abbot for a massive handicap game of 280. Female High Game Scratch was won by newcomer to the BUTBA Tour this season, Kayla Knight, bowling a 189, and High Handicap Game went to Stacey Spencer for her 223. Louise Parker won female High Average with an admirable 155 average for her 9 games on tough conditions.
Paul Williams and Dave Abbot won the Doubles section from Chink in the Armor, bowling a massive 1364 series. It was Andrew Stratford, however, from Die Angst Des Kelger Beim Sieben-Zehn Spaltung’s, who stole the Single section victory, bowling a 660 handicap series. Lads on Tour dominated both the Trios and Quads sections, picking up their scores dramatically at by the end of the day, with their trios team of Chris May, Jack Adams and Tom Prickett bowling a 1901, and, joined by Antony Lakey, bowled a 2564 in the quads. Despite picking up their scores, Lads On Tour finished 2nd in the competition overall, scoring a combined team handicap total of 7435, just 89 pins behind Chink in the Armor (with Dan Chan and Dan Frazer joining Williams and Abbott), who finished on a 7524, winning the ex-student division.
The Sheffield Quads was an overall successful competition, seeing bowlers once again pushed to their limits on challenging patterns, creating a brilliant vibe among competitors. Next stop on the BUTBA Calendar sees a new competition and a new centre for our bowlers, with Tom Chuter and Shaun Parsons running a Trios Event at Airport Bowl on the 27th April.