Suffolk duo win national pairs title

ANDY Meikle and Adrian Holden became only the fourth Suffolk pair to win the Bowls England national pairs title, when they dominated their Cumbrian opponents in the final at Worthing yesterday.

ANDY Meikle and Adrian Holden became only the fourth Suffolk pair to win the Bowls England national pairs title, when they dominated their Cumbrian opponents in the final at Worthing yesterday.

Following in the footsteps of their Felixstowe and Suffolk club-mates John Rednall and Clive Webb, who lifted the coveted trophy in 2003, Meikle and Holden stormed through a strong field, winning six or seven games in the county, and another six at Worthing.

After they beat hotly-tipped Devon's all-England duo Lee Haywood and James Webber in the quarter finals, Holden said: “I've won all sorts of national titles, but not one of the main four - so I have set my sights on putting that right this week. We have come here to win.”

With Meikle's help, he had just turned on a fantastic display of precision bowling to turn an 11-15 deficit into a 25-15 victory, and, from that moment on, defeat was not an option.

In the semi finals, Meikle and Holden opened up a 25-11 lead over Paddington pair Norman Worley and Pat Briscoe, and coasted to a 25-19 victory, and, in the final, they were 17-5 in front of Carlisle Subscription's John Baird and Rick Gallagher after 13 ends.

Pressing home to a well-deserved 20-10, Meikle and Holden were delighted to receive the trophy from Bowls England president Cliff Waterman, who also hails from Suffolk.

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“It's taken a long time, but it was worth the wait,” said Holden, whose three-year England career ended in 2004, but a recall to the international scene for the 46-year-old gardener could well be in the offing.

The Suffolk duo are already guaranteed a crack at the British Isles title, which will be up for grabs in Belfast next July.

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