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Monday, 31 March 2008

Cars and Vans 4U Ltd Question Setters Trophy

Week 15...

Another high scoring week in which the questions (set by the Castle) were very favourably received for the most part.

In the A League, the Ox-fford need one more win to secure the League title after pipping the Principals in the tightest of contests, finishing 179-176 to the Ox-fford. Their meeting earlier in the season resulted in a narrow win for the Principals (171-166), so there has been barely anything to choose between the teams this season, both contests having been played on nights when the questions have favoured those of us who have answered a lot of quiz questions over the years! Mark Watson had his second 57 of the season for the Ox-fford with only the true identities of Hinge & Bracket sinking the full house ship...Paul Morrissey also scored a season's best 42. The Principals scored very consistently also with Graham Bailey and Alan Levitt each contributing 42. Tim Findlow and Alan Gilday had season's best 39s.

Elsewhere, the Dolphin beat the Ox-fford 'C' 174-156 albeit the 'C' were missing some regular players due to illness and that awful "earning a living" business. Peter McBride (45) and Alan Hodgson (39) top scored for the Dolphin and Derek Owen contributed his season's best score of 27. Alice Walker chipped in with 45 for the Ox-fford 'C' and Tim Massey scored a season's best 30.

The Dolphin Dragons secured their A League status for next season after a narrow 6 point win over the New Castle. Chris Wearne top scored with 27, another season's best (lots of them this week). Graham Wallace and Shauna Barstow each scored 30 for the New Castle.

The two relegation places will be shared by two of three teams - the Castle, New Castle and the Church House Bollington. All three teams have identical records and are separated only by "total points scored". The Castle and Church House Bollington meet each other in Week 17 which could be decisive...

In the B League, congratulations once again to the British Flag whose promotion to the A League is assured. On the night the Flag lost to a thumping performance from the Harrington Academicals, who now look favourites to join the Flag in the top shop next season. Dave Partington (39), Rob Parkin and Stuart Mills (33 each) and Mike Hewitt (30) all scored heavily for the Academicals.

The Three Crowns have become the League's draw specialists and shared their match with the Baths Hotel 143-143 to give the Three Crowns their second draw of the season. Dave Pennington top scored for the Three Crowns with 33 whilst Mike Vickerstaff (39) and Mary Bloor (season's best 36) did the same for the Baths.

The Cock Inn just beat the Waters Green Wonderers by 1 point, with several people on both sides getting 27s - Jackie Hulme for the Cock, Bob Langstaff, Wendy Brown and Jon Thompson for the Wonderers.

Finally, the Lamb Inn edge ever closer to the trapdoor to the C League as they lost 128-119 to the George & Dragon who continue their extraordinary second half to the season winning their 5th game on the trot. 27 was the highest score here too, with Paul Griffiths (Lamb) and Malcolm Asquith (G&D) being the top scorers.

The situation at the bottom of the B League is nothing like as clear cut as the A League, but the Lamb are running out of options and need to win their last 2 games to survive. The other place looks like it might be between the Three Crowns, Baths Hotel and George & Dragon, but much can happen yet.

In the C League, 1 more point will guarantee the Knot Inn promotion in their debut season, despite their loss this week to a bravura performance from the Albion, who it was pleasing to note had a full complement of 4 again this week. John Hargreaves (42) and Roberto Rodriguez (30) had season's best scores for the Albion who won 150-136, Art Higham scoring an excellent 39 for the Knot.

The second promotion spot looks like it should be between the Albion and the Puss Artists who completed a 139-116 win over the Harrington 'B'. Andy Bailey maintained his form with 36 whilst Matt Eagles had a season's best 27. Dave Cooper for the Puss and Geoff Parkin for the Harrington also scored 27.

The Sutton Church House beat the Prince of Wales with yet more "best scores", 27 from John Stein and 24 from Ray Henry doing the trick. The Park Tavern beat the Waters Green Rams thanks to 42 from Nick Lloyd-Griffiths and 30 from Shaun Lloyd-Griffiths, again both season's best efforts.

News & Views - Week 15 (18/03/2008)

Monday, 17 March 2008

Puss Artists...

Continuing our ramble around the teams in the League, here are the Puss Artists in all their glory. Happily ensconced by the canal on Buxton Road, the revamped Puss in Boots (home of the Artists) happily welcomes all and sundry to its pleasant surroundings - even the sort of people who play in the Quiz League!

Our picture shows (left to right) the main man Andy Bailey, Ashley Cooper, Dave Cooper and Matt Eagles.

Cars and Vans 4U Ltd Question Setters Trophy

Sunday, 16 March 2008

Week 14...

14/18ths of the way through the season and still all to play for, although bets are getting hard to come by on some teams as I will discuss later...

Everything is still very much possible in the A League where no sensible punter would bet on the outcome. The Principals completed the double over the Dolphin with a 170 - 149 win with very solid scoring all round. Alan Gilday had his best night of the season with 39, the same score as Graham Bailey. Lesley Davies got a season's best 33, and Alan Levitt had the same score. If 33 is the lowest individual score of the night, that adds up to a pretty powerful team performance. Peter McBride with 39 and Stuart Rowbotham with 30 (in only his 3rd League start of the season) contributed to what was still a very respectable score for the Dolphin.

Elsewhere the Ox-fford beat the Dolphin Dragons by a very similar game score (172 - 147), Mark Watson (48) and Liz Horrocks (42) top scored for the Ox-fford and Dragons respectively.

At the other end of the table, the Church House Bollington enjoyed a narrow 5 point win over their follow promoted team from last year in the New Castle. Rick Davis continued his very solid scoring with another 30 for the Church House (taking him into the Top 10 individuals) and Graham Wallace scored a season's best 39 for the New Castle.

In the B League, some things are much clearer. The British Flag are guaranteed promotion to the A League - well done indeed - and they must be odds-on favourites for the B League title with only the Harrington Academicals (6 points behind) now able to catch them. The Flag beat the Waters Green Wonderers by a handsome margin with Neil Drummond (39), Helen Laurence (30) and Tony Browne (27) all contributing major scores.

The Academicals enjoyed another good win over the Lamb Inn, Dave Partington (33) and Mike Hewitt (27) enjoying season's best scores. Closest B League game of the night was at the Baths Hotel, who just lost by 5 points to the ever-improving Plough Taverners who have won 3 out of their last 4 games to move into 3rd place.

Having lost their first 8 games of the season, the George & Dragon have now won their last 4 on the bounce to move towards mid-table. Malcolm Asquith (33) was supported by a fine Jeater family effort with Pat and Annie both scoring 27 each, in helping the G&D to a 12 point win over the Three Crowns. I would also like to welcome back Alasdair Reid to the League who debuted this week with a fine 33 for the Three Crowns. Alasdair played many years ago for CAP and even the Gardeners Question Team for those of you who are old enough to go that far back...welcome back Alasdair.

The top of the table clash in the C League produced a win for the Knot Inn over the Puss Artists. Like the British Flag, the Knot Inn just need 1 more point to be guaranteed a place in the B League next season and look favourites for the title with a 6 point lead over the Puss, albeit having played 1 game moire. Brian Bogie from the Knot equalled Geoff Parkin's best C League score of the season with 48 whilst Art Higham weighed in with 42.

Closest match of the night saw the Waters Green Rams just beating the Albion by two points. The Albion, freshly shaven after last week's kerfuffle, did very well with Jenny Wright scoring a season's best 27, the same score as John Hargreaves. The Rams just edged it though thanks to an excellent 39 from Adum Carr, ably supported by 27 from Tracey Crellin, both season's best performances.

Elsewhere, the Park Tavern beat the Prince of Wales with Nick Lloyd-Griffiths (27) leading the way for the Park, whilst the Sutton Church House beat the Chester Road Tavern by 6 points with Betty Dobson and Barrie McQuinn contributing 24 each. Steve Moores had a season's best 42 for the Chester Road.

Individually speaking, the final "Top 3" in the C League will be surely be Andy Bailey, Brian Bogie and John Hargreaves, the only question remains in what order.

Speaking of personal scores, we are now at the stage of the season when only either the best 11 (A League) or 12 (B & C Leagues) individual scores from however many games you have played are counted. Several players have now played more games than these numbers. Just in case anyone was wondering why their totals had not increased as much as they thought they should have…

News & Views - Week 14 (11/03/2008)

Monday, 10 March 2008

Paul Beard

Finally this week I must unfortunately make mention to all teams of a serious incident that occurred after the end of last Tuesday’s C League game between the Albion and the Harrington ‘B’. The match was played at the Albion and the Albion team included Paul Beard who has played in the League for many years.

In essence, after the conclusion of the game, Paul Beard assaulted one of the Harrington ‘B’ team members by grabbing him by the throat and pushing him against a wall, accompanied by abusive and threatening language. Other people in the pub then intervened and prevented any further incident or injury. This sort of behaviour is entirely unacceptable and frankly actionable on a formal legal basis should the party involved wish to do so. The party involved has been advised and will consider their position.

I have spoken to those concerned, including Paul Beard of course, who fully admits the physical assault as outlined above and he has stated to me (and many others) that he will take no further part in any Macclesfield Quiz League games in the future.

The League Committee (John Knight, Graham Bailey, Marshall Barnard and I) have met and acted as follows:-

1. We note and accept Paul’s comments that he has no intention of playing any further part in the League from this point onwards
2. In any event, the incident is so serious that we formally ban Paul from playing, watching or otherwise taking part in any way whatsoever in any Macclesfield Quiz League games for the remainder of this season
3. If Paul wishes to participate in the League again at any point after the conclusion of this season, he can only do so if he first contacts any of the Committee (preferably myself) who will meet with him beforehand to discuss (and seek assurances about) his future conduct

The Albion team have been informed of the above and both accept and understand the decisions made. I should stress that no other Albion team members were involved in this incident and that they are all entirely blameless in the matter, indeed I am grateful for their co-operation and understanding subsequently. Paul’s actions were, and remain, entirely his own responsibility.

I am sure the matter will end there. If it does not, please let me know.

Week 13...

A week in which the A League has its 3 "derby games" with the two Dolphins, Ox-ffords and Castles all playing each other. At the end of it all, only 2 points separate the top four teams in the League - all to play for...

At the Dolphin, the Dolphin got the better of the Dolphin Dragons in one of their usual closely fought contests, Peter McBride scoring 45 and Alan Hodgson scoring 42 in the process, with both Liz Horrocks and Robin Morrell weighing in with 33 each for the Dragons. On the other side of town, the Ox-fford got the better of the Ox-fford 'C' who were without Haydn Thompson, the dreary business of earning a living once again having interfered with the real business at hand. Mark Watson scored 45 for the Ox-fford whilst Mark Shaw scored a seasons-best 30 along with Ian Willsdon in a very solid all round effort. Paul Jenkins made his first appearance of the season for the Ox-fford and scored 24 - all on the General Knowledge having fallen foul of the old trick knowing the answer to most of the Specialist Round questions apart from his own! The Castle and New Castle had the closest game, the Castle just edging it by 14 points with the ever consistent Jeff Corry cementing his "Top 10" individual place with another very good 30. Shauna Barstow top scored for the New Castle with 24.

In the B League, the British Flag moved ever nearer to automatic promotion albeit they only edged out the Baths Hotel by 2 points this week, helped in no small part by Helen Laurence's excellent 33. The Waters Green Wonderers ended their recent barren run in beating the Lamb Inn - Bob Langstaff (Waters Green) and Chris Butler (Lamb) each scoring a seasons-best 33. The Harrington Academicals moved into second place with an 8 point win over the Cock Inn, Mike Hewitt scoring 27 for his best effort of the campaign thus far. The George & Dragon continued their renaissance with a good win over the 3rd-placed Plough Taverners, Malcolm Asquith scoring 33 for the G&D and comfortably topping the Individual table.

In the C League, the Knot Inn stay on top courtesy of a win against the Sutton Church House, with Brian Bogie (21) and a season's-best 18 from Richard Briand leading the way. Ray Henry scored 24 for the Sutton Church House. The Puss Artists now occupy second after beating the Waters Green Rams. In a lower scoring game than usual, Andy Bailey's 33 for the Puss was decisive despite David Reynolds countering with 27 for the Rams. Steve Adshead made a welcome return to the League in his first appearance of the season for the Park Tavern and his 33 was comfortable the best score in a close win over the Chester Road Tavern. Tony, Jim and Steve Moores all made 21 each for the CRT. The Albion beat the Harrington 'B' in the remaining game with John Hargreaves scoring 33 for the Albion and chasing Andy Bailey and Brian Bogie for the lead at the top of the Individual table.

Sunday, 2 March 2008

Cup & Plate - Semi-Final Draw...

Champions League? - consolation prize compared to this...
The draw for the only Cup and Plate competitions that count are above...