Definitely A Game Of Two Halves!
The Robbers kicked off their season on Wednesday night with a trip over the border into Somerset to take on The Hawthorns in Division 5 of the Blackmore Vale League.
This was the first time a Keyneston team have played there, although the home team included some former Templecombe players who have been to our hall.
Charlton Horethorne isn't the easiest place to play, as there are issues with the mats as the Hawthorns players freely admitted. We have all played on mats where a bowl seems to be drifting in nicely, only for it to suddenly move out, but seeing a bowl which is drifting in then swing out, and then back in, and then back out again took some getting used to! Apparently the problems are something to do with nails in the wooden floor under the mats, but we all play on the same surface and the home team had to put up with the same inconsistencies as us!
Whether it was adjusting to the mats, or early season jet lag following the 20 mile drive, we certainly started very, very poorly.
When the tea break came after 10 ends we sat like a bunch of boxers trying to recover after taking a beating, but expecting the seemingly inevitable knock out blow to come.
On one mat Robin Evans, Irene Drummond and skip Maureen Bishop trailed 4 - 10, and even worse that was by far our better start, as the other triple were twice as far behind, with Anita Evans, Doug Leak and Del Way 3 -15 down.
It may have been the tea, or perhaps we were just getting used to the mats (as much as possible anyway!), but at the start of the second leg we began to pick up a few shots.
Del's trio were always fighting an uphill battle with a 12 shot deficit, but they managed to pull back five shots in the second leg to finish with a rather more respectable 14 - 21.
When they finished we were still playing our last end, but in the nine ends after tea we had only conceded two singles and had picked up 13 shots to turn the game around from 6 down to 5 up. The final end saw us score another two, giving us a 19 - 12 win, and the match which had earlier seemed to be a lost cause finished as a tie.
Match result: HAWTHORNS 33 - 33 TARRANT KEYNESTON ROBBERS (3 - 3)
Find Tarrant Keyneston SMBC
Anne Biddlecombe Hall, Valley Road, Tarrant Keyneston, Blandford Forum, Dorset, DT11 9JE
Turn off from the main road at the crossroads into the road shown as "Galpins Cottages" on the map. PLEASE NOTE - the hall is on the LEFT hand side of the road, and not on the right as shown by the marker on the map.