MULTIPLE Lithgow City championship winner Jeff Madden had to draw on all his experience gained from his ‘approaching 60’ championship victories to claim the club’s winter handicap pairs title. According to Madden his championship titles are “approaching 60” and he needed every bit of knowledge gained throughout that time to overcome the challenge thrown at him and his partner Ron Thomson to claim another title to go with his recent victory in the district’s champion of champions singles victory.
And even then it took and extra end to determine the outcome. By comparison his partner Thomson and opponent Ian Birk could only lay claim to both being a minor singles runner-up. Birk was partnered with Col Quince who was making his first appearance in not only a club event but also a championship decider. Under the handicap system Birk and Quince had six shots start before the first bowl was delivered, extending this to seven shots with a single on the first end before going on the open up a 14-7 lead after 11 of the scheduled 18 ends.
Madden and Thomson then won five of the next six ends to open up a three-shot lead, going into the 18th end ahead 18-15. But Birk and Quince would not go away and tied up the game with three shots on the 18th end. The head changed five times on the 19th end, before Madden, down a shot and with the last bowl of the match, drew on all his experience to take the shot and the title in a high quality game. Madden overcame the challenge from Craig Pugsley (who was playing on his home green) in his opening match before going on to beat Rob Luland 31-18 in the semi final and then the 2016 champion Jae Marskell 31-24 in the final.
The City champion has the opportunity to add to his tally over the next few months. First up will be the district champion of champions pairs event on July 22 and 23 when he teams with long term partner Ian Townsend, then the district senior pairs at Forbes on September 2 and 3 and finally the senior singles title at Portland on September 16 and 17. Madden also has the chance to add to his club title wins with entries now open for the clubís triples event (entries closing on September 24) and also the club fours title (closing date for entries being October 22).