"Well that's the year off and running even with Storm Ali trying hard to blow us of course - the Opening Bonspiel last night was a record in that it was over subscribed for the first time.
Your President Ian, Match Sec Sandy and yours truly gracefully stood out as “family” and watched through the bar window some of the excellent play from members and a few others who clearly have gone cold over the summer with the barn door easily missed. [So, clearly not quite so gracefully then?]
The deserving winners were team Hamilton with skip Steve carried to victory by his able team of John Finlay at three, Eric McMorris at two and “stickie” Ron Griffiths at lead. They carried off the trophy and a nice bottle of wine each that Sandy selected specially for the event."
And a nice touch by President Ian who surprised our Secretary Alan Smith when he presented him with a rather fine bottle of malt whisky in recognition of all of his hard work for the club. Not surprisingly, the now ritual-like checking of the bottle seal took place. *sighs*
(Editor's note: I'm quite exhausted now with all of my hard work updating the website... it's Glenkinchie, by the way).
Congratulations to winning skip Fergus Corbett and his team - Alastair Kerr, Ken Fish and George Russell - who are this year's Swan Medal winners.
Runner up, and only 2.5 points behind, was the rink of Ian MacDonald supported by Stuart Pollok, Ron Griffiths and Alan Smith.
Honourable mention (because I edit the website and I'm in that team and I know we don't get any prizes but just the same, the boy did good) for Graham Barnes' team with a third place finish. Messrs Malloy, Steele and Pollitt take a small bow.
In the eerily quiet of a near empty Braehead Ice Arena, all that could be heard was the tiny patter of eight little feet, the roar of the occasional stone and the frantic sound of a brush sweeping urgently across the ice.
It was now 10.30 pm and four hours had passed since they had started their first tie.
This was the final of the Giffnock Pairs competition, watched avidly by the Braehead Ice Man who's encouraging words "OK, one more end, then yer teas oot lads!" echoed around the arena.
And so it was that after Malloy and Corbett (F) had each thrown 48 stones (and swept them all); and their opponents 36... for those slackers Nicholl and Halliday had a bye in the first round; a conclusion was reached.
The pairs champs were Fergus Corbett (skip) and Steve Malloy. And as they turned to acknowledge the massed cheers of the crowd man, at least he was kind enough to take a photo.
Led by Organiser-in-Chief, Secretary Alan Smith, our trusty reporters Stewart Daye and President Sandy Halliday attended the Glynhill Ladies International at Braehead to meet up with the team we sponsor - Team Wang of China.
This report just in...
"Alan, Sandy and I met with the Chinese Team (skipped by ‘Betty’ Wang who is on the extreme left of the photos) at Braehead earlier this evening.
The “Meet and Greet’ went very well and we presented each team member with a Chinese Tartan scarf, a tin of shortbread and a Giffnock badge.
Safe to say, Team Wang loved their scarves and a big thank you must go to Giffnock's Alistair Brown who generously donated them.
The above photo was taken on my iPhone. Sandy should have much better ones taken on his fancy camera. (Where are they? - Ed)
Last week Team Wang won a prestigious competition in Bern, Switzerland and will soon be appearing in the Olympics in South Korea.
The team to support - after Eve Muirhead’s rink of course!"
Let me start by saying it was Lynn & Clarkston's home ice (East Kilbride) and we struggled to get used to it while they were straight into their rhythm. When their lead put 2 on the pot lid at the first end and we couldn’t find the house, the omens were there. It looked like being a difficult night.
Both Giffnock teams went behind - Marshall by 4 to 0 after 3 ends and Malloy by 6 to 0 after only 2 ends. But worse was to follow.
Malloy pulled one back in the 3rd to arrest the slide and with a packed house in the 3rd was relying on a single buried Giffnock stone to keep the score down. Sadly, not buried enough and against the ‘play safe’ advice of his own 3, L&K’s Graham Leiper played a brilliant last stone.
It sailed serenely through a narrow gap to catch the edge of the Giffnock stone and chip it out... and lie. An 8 ender for L&K and disaster for Giffnock! Coming back from 14-1 is a bit tricky.
I’d always looked forward to an 8 ender but not to being on the receiving end of one!
Meanwhile, Marshall’s side were lying 5-1 down going into their final end but, remarkably, took a 5 in the last game to win that one and let us retain a modicum of pride.
I’ll let the rest of our team announce their involvement in this historic match (or maybe not).
There were the odd mutterings that maybe we shouldn’t submit a report at all from some quarters! I mean, who would find out if we just kept quiet. Who indeed?
So, a loss of the cup for the 3rd year in a row I believe.
Apologies all... but there was a silver lining... Mr Leiper and his team very kindly paid for the drinks afterwards. So, it wasn’t ALL bad, just most of it.
Least said about this the better eh? (Good luck with that! - Ed.)
Well done to the Giffnock team who were, once again, the winning outside team at the Cathcart Castle Bonspiel.
And not only were they the best guest rink, but also the best overall performers. There is a suggestion that a Cathcart player (called Wendy) assisted with an unintentional promotion of a couple of Mr Smith's stones but luck as well as skill is a key element of the Giffnock game.
No doubt we will be regaled with stories of their prowess at the upcoming Annual Dinner - 21st April, don't forget. And in late shock news, apparently that's a FULL bottle of wine that Alan Smith received!
Giffnock retained the famous potty last evening in our annual competition with 69 Ladies.
Rinks skipped by Stuart Bannerman and Bobby Corbett outpointed the ladies by 14-11 with teams playing 3 ends against each of the opponents two rinks.
The game looked like being a formality for the Giffnock teams until the ladies pulled back 5 points in one end. Suddenly, it was 'game on'. However, Giffnock successfully closed out the final ends to retain the 'trophy'.
After an enjoyable meal at Prezzos, the potty was formally presented to incoming President Sandy Halliday by 69 Ladies' President Rosemary Claxton.
Credit must go to Bobby Corbett (well Cecilia) for ensuring a "blooming" potty was presented and Sandy Halliday is now tasked with ensuring it's available in a similar colourful state for 2018.
The winning skip and proud holder of the Willie Watson Trophy was Gordon Nicholl... who had to rush away to participate in the Glenalmond Trophy at Braehead. Stuart Pollok received the trophy accompanied by promising newcomer Grant Forsyth.