Ottery St Mary petanque team end Devon League season as runners-up
- Credit: Archant
Ottery St Mary petanque team travelled to Brickfields, Plymouth, on the final Sunday of July, sitting just one point behind league leaders The Pig on the Hill, and hoping to emulate the triumph of Sir Francis Drake, when he beat the armada, writes Dave West.
However, the Otters must have left their drum at home when they found themselves two games down after the opening triples!
The Otters trio of John and Rose Thatcher and Peter Smith, led 10-2 at one stage, but were eventually undone 13-12.
Next up, Dave West, Del Hansen and Paul Puddicombe found themselves involved in a close contest that was nip-and-tuck throughout until the home team hit top form to edge into a 10-9 lead.and three points in the next end took them to a 13-9 victory.
Things did not improve for the Otters when Dave West and Del Hansen lost the first of the doubles, thumped 13-2 in a contest where everything seemed to go right for the Brickfield boys.
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However, the tide changed in the second of the doubles as Peter Smith and Paul Puddicombe recorded a 13-5 win.
The final Ottery pairing of John and Rose Thatcher made sure the visiting side ended the match on top as they secured a narrow 13-12 success.
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It all left the hosts taking the match by three games to two. After the action had been competed a splendid buffet lunch was served.
Petanque is a competitive sport at this level, but also one in which great friendships are built and the Otters stayed at Brickfields after lunch to join in games with other home members during the afternoon club meeting.
Later in the day news drifted through from North Devon that The Pig on the Hill had beaten local rivals Torridge U3A 3-2 and so they clinched the Devon League tile leaving the Otters having to settle for the runners-up berth.
The 2017 Devon League final table
P W Pts
Pig On The Hill 12 10 36
Ottery St Mary 12 6 34
Plymouth 12 9 32
Chudleigh 12 6 29
TorridgeU3A 12 3 29
Honiton 12 5 29
Isca 12 3 21
That’s not the end of the petanque season for there remain various competitions and events, and most players continue throughout the year at club meetings.