Geraldton Red go top in Batavia Bowling League men’s pennants as Cukela & Wright step up

Joe CriddleGeraldton Guardian
Joe Cukela helped lead his team to victory in the Batavia Bowling League.
Camera IconJoe Cukela helped lead his team to victory in the Batavia Bowling League. Credit: Joe Criddle/Supplied

Geraldton Red showed their strength in the Batavia Bowling League’s premier men’s competition, moving to the top of the table with a win despite missing three of their best players.

The Reds beat a dogged Northampton side 61-50 on aggregate, giving away only half a match point.

Reds skips Joe Cukela and Brian Wright won their rinks against Dale Maver and Stafford Horobin’s quartets, while Wes Jones drew with Martin Parker.

The result came despite the Reds having Brad King, Jon Trotter and Warwick Glenister away on representative duty at the Inter Zone Round Robin in Busselton.

Two of the other three sides won while Mullewa just did enough to stay within touching distance of the top four with four rounds to go before finals.

Geraldton Red’s win leapfrogged them over Wonthella Gold as the Golds lost a derby encounter to fourth-placed Wonthella Green, 5-1.

The Greens look steady and primed for a strong home-and-away finish.

Geraldton Blue embedded themselves in the top four with a telling win against a depleted Geraldton Gold, who had two skippers playing in the inter-league competition.

The result all but ends the Golds’ season, who are now 10 points adrift of fourth place.

Denison White claimed two rinks at home in a tense match against Mullewa but had to share the aggregate.

The damage could have been worse for Mullewa.

The points mean fifth-placed Saints slid to 5½ points adrift of fourth spot.

Wonthella Maroon put themselves back into finals contention after claiming 5½ points at home against Denison Blue.

Maroon are now seven points adrift of the four.

They face Mullewa, the Green Machine and Geraldton Red in a run that will certainly shape their season.

The Maroons travel to play the Saints in this week’s match of the round.

Northampton host a wounded Wonthella Gold.

Geraldton Blue play Denison Blue, with both looking to rebound.

Denison White return home to play Wonthella Green and the final encounter is the Geraldton Derby between Gold and Red.

The Inter-League Round Robin, played in Busselton on Saturday and Sunday, resulted in victory to Eastern Districts.

They won all of their three encounters.

The Mid West’s Northern Zone team lost their two opening matches before finishing strongly to end the tournament on a positive note.

Local stars King and Michael Ford were selected in the allstars team, along with Steven Fewster from the Moore Districts.

The trio will compete against a BowlsWA metropolitan side in March at Osborne Park before the Country Week carnival.

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