Andrew Killick wins theMiddlesbrough AC Handicap Singles tournament: 27-28 April

Charles Waterfield presents trophies to the finalists

At a time when some AC Tournaments struggle for numbers 14 players entered the Middlesbrough AC Handicap Singles Weekend, which was very good response for early season when the weather can be iffy; and it was.

Saturday was mostly cold with steady drizzle and very occasional bright spots. But, on Sunday, the weather was quite simply dire. Cold conditions were maintained with the drizzle giving way to rain in bucket loads leading to squelchy lawns and soggy players. The downpour eventually relented – just as everyone was locking up and heading for home!

Handicaps ranged from 20 to minus 1.5. Full of good intensions we began Saturday with 2 Blocks, playing 18-point games with 2-hour time limits, which seemed about right with only a handful of games going to time. The target of 4 rounds on Saturday was comfortably achieved.

As the reality of Sunday weather struck home and with the happy band of 14 players reduced to 9, the Blocks were abandoned to focus on games between those players with 100% records from day 1.

Thankfully 2 rounds on Sunday gave us a winner. In a very tight Final, Andrew Killick (-1.5) beat Mark Simmerson (+3.5) plus 2.

It must be said that the 4 lawns are very much improved. The second year of Duncan Hectors Lawn Maintenance Programme is coming along quite nicely.

Special mentions go to 5 visitors from Nottingham Croquet Club, to Stephen Pratt who decided to return to AC Croquet after a couple of decades away, to Mark Simmerson from Sheffield Croquet Club who is a regular supporter of our Tournaments, and to Croquet North and Middlesbrough Club Members for supporting the Tournament.