Lawn Bowls

Manning Jack Attack Review: 22nd February

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With the Bowls Premier League raging on at Moama, it was time for Australia’s most anticipated community bowling event to resume on the other side of the continent, as Manning Jack Attack reached the halfway point of the Summer 2023 season, on what was the last Wednesday in February, which just happened to be Richie Benaud Day.

Rather appropriately, the only team at Manning Memorial to score Twenty Chew shots on the 22nd were a bunch of indoor cricketers.

Other than that, it was a fairly quiet week leading up Wednesday night, with Half Price back from his visit to the Greath Southern, although the most noteworthy achievement from one of our own was that of Helen from the CD’s, who went all the way and won the Manning Women’s Pairs alongside the artist formerly known as Laura Merz, who mysteriously disappeared in November 2022, and was replaced by a lady named Laura Butler.

Sure, winning a club championship at a club as grand as Manning Memorial is great, but have you ever won a Manning Jack Attack title?

The Overall Night

With no Corner to Corner this week, it was straight down to business at 6:30 with a howling southwesterly, and highlighting how hard fought it was on Wednesday night, there were 7 tiebreaks out of the 13 games, plus 1 drawn set, and it was especially close on the grass, where 4 out of the 5 games went to tiebreaks, and they all finished at least half an hour after the Synthetic rinks were all done.

Starting off the top, 1st Overall on the night went to the crew from Team Tommy (Steve, Mick and Troy), who racked up a straight sets +19 shot victory against the Jack Hunters on Synthetic Rink 3, quite a scoreline when I mention that the Jack Hunters were up 6-4 with an end to play in the 1st Set, only for Tommy to take the rail and pick up a 4 on their powerplay to win the set 12-6, after which coach Steve Withers switched to playing left-handed in the 2nd Set…

Which ended 15-2 thanks to another 4 turned into 8 on the powerplay.

Still, the Jack Hunters produced a moment of magic on the 3rd End, when Brett stepped up to the mat 5 down, only to land one stone cold draw onto the jack, a bowl that Withers could only watch and applaud:

You can see Brett down the other end celebrating

2nd and 3rd overall both finished on +18 shots, so we had to whip out the countback system, and it was a clearcut 9-8 ends won result the way of Ebowla Bad, Ibowla Good, who only gave up 1 shot in 10 ends against Dynamics on Synthetic Rink 1, which puts the former Team McDonald into the Top 10 after Week 3, a good turnaround after being used as target practice by the Unbelievabowls in Week 1.

So 3rd place went to Buffed Helmets 1 (Scotty, Kip, Carry and Fuzzy), in the money once again thanks to their 22-4 win against the Top Shots on Synthetic Rink 7, and as mentioned off the top, it did seem appropriate that the only team to score 22 shots on the 22nd of the 2nd were a bunch of (Indoor) cricketers.

It was also the farewell for Buffed Helmets regular Fuzzy (aka Anthony) this season before he jets off to South Africa to play for Australia in the Over 50s Cricket World Cup, although based on recent performances, Fuzzy is half a chance of being sent to India to play for Australia in the 3rd Test…

He’d probably play the sweep better than the Australian top order.

So that left 4th place to go to Ten Pin, thanks to their +13 shot victory against the Top Shots on Synthetic Rink 6, and they did it in true Ten Pin fashion…

A tie break.

Yes, Stop Drop & Bowl won the 1st Set 4-3, then the Jack Attack veterans hit back and won the 2nd Set 14-0, then held 2 in the tiebreak to confirm the win, ensuring their 4th place didn’t come with the ironic fact that they’d lost.

Finishing off the games for Week 3, and the game of the night was the game between last week’s Top 2 finishers Shapes and Manning Up on Grass Rink 3, as the Shapes boys displayed some relentless line and length on the slowing green:

However, Manning Up won the 1st Set 7-5 thanks to holding 2 on their own powerplay and stifling Shapes’ powerplay, but the Shapes line and length got even better as the lights kicked in and the dew came up, going on to win the 2nd Set 10-0 to send the game to a tiebreak, and it looked all over straight away when Tristan sat a bowl on the jack that couldn’t be caught, until John stepped up and missed shot by an inch with his first bowl, forcing him to go for a drive with the last bowl of the game…

He went straight up the guts and absolutely nailed the jack, which was going to sail into the ditch and be re-spotted on the T for a Manning Up win, only to clip one of Trav’s back bowls, veer right, where a wayward bowl by Shapes had done it’s job to save the game.

Johnny sending it down
The sheer look of relief on Tristan’s face as he looks at the end result in disbelief

What an almighty ending, but still, if you are going to lose a game, make sure it’s in a tiebreak, because that way you’ve at least won 2 points.

Another game of importance, which turned out to be the last game to finish on the night, was the second edition of the Macatac Derby between Macatac 1 and Macatac 2 out on the lightless reaches of Grass Rink 5, and despite Duncan Mac’s claim that it was going to end 35-0 the way of Macatac 1, and Di’s attempts to sledge Heath through the medium of dance:

It proved to be anything but lopsided, as Macatac 1 won the 1st Set 7-2, then the ladies of Macatac 2 hit back and won the 2nd Set 6-5, and went on to dust off the defending champs in the tiebreak, the second time in as many seasons that the Terrible Twos have beaten the 1s.

That gives Macatac 2 a hat-trick of tiebreak victories this season, and just about finishes Macatac 1’s title chances, as they sit 6 points off top spot with 8 points available before the finals.

Moving on, there was the War of the Witless Winless between the Bowled Guys and the Jackstreet Boys on Synthetic Rink 2, as the Jackstreet Boys thought that Jackstreet was back (Alright!) when they won the 1st Set 5-4, but the Bowled Guys rubbed their heads for good luck and it paid off in spades, winning the 2nd Set 8-2, and they successfully atoned for last week’s tiebreak disappointment to blast clear of the Bottom 4, while the Jackstreet Boys can take solace in the fact they don’t have a 0 next to their points tally.

On Synthetic Rink 4, the Great Bowls of Fire kept up their mark as the only team to win every game in straight sets, defeating the CD’s 8-4 7-5 under the MV Wholesale sign, set up once again by some consistent team bowling from Jonesy, Paul ‘Greek Freak’ Alphabet and Todd, limiting any advantage the CD’s had with Helen playing lead.

Moving to next door on Synthetic Rink 5, Verse 1 and Crawshaw played out the only drawn set of the night, with the 1st Set finishing in a 5-5 draw after Crawshaw (With Wilko confined to the bench) got 2 on their powerplay to finish the set, but it was all Verse 1 from there, with Sally, Ronni, Mick & Peg, plus a cameo from Ronni’s daughter Abby, proving too good in the 2nd Set with a 9-1 win.

Evidently, Crawshaw need disorderly Decca to the emergency room now more than ever, because their vital signs are fading fast as they sit stone motherless last.

Finishing off the Synthetic rinks was the game out of Challenger Avenue, previously known as Synthetic Rink 8, between the Salter Point Spinners and The Shah’s, and the Spinners seemed to revel in the fact they were playing a team who were newer to the game than they were, as they picked up a 5 on their powerplay to win the 1st Set 13-2, and they were headed for a straight sets victory with a 4-1 lead after 4 ends, until the Shah’s picked up a 3 on their last end powerplay to win the 2nd Set 7-4, sending it to the tiebreak, where the Spinners managed to break their winless run this season by holding shot, getting themselves out of the Bottom 4 for now.

A Shah bowled a good’un

On Grass Rink 1, Fawesome managed to pull off the only straight sets win on the Grass on Wednesday night, defeating the Buffed Helmets 2 by 10 shots, sealed with a 3 on the 2nd Set powerplay to go from 2-6 down to 8-6 up, and one of the features of the night was that Buffed Helmets manager Scratch O’Brien turned heel and decided to help Stewie and Di complete the Fawesome threesome, and with bowls like this, it was easy to see why Fawesome won so well:

Another feature of the night was Carmo borrowing Half Price’s bowls, a partnership that ended as poorly as Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton’s marriages, and even Carmo’s dog Pepe was giving him a dirty look regarding his performance:

On Grass Rink 2, the Bowling Stones kept up their unbeaten start by defeating Salty Towers in a tough tiebreak, coming back to win after dropping the 1st Set 9-4, and the result leaves the Stones in 3rd, only missing the chance to jump to 2nd thanks to Buffed Helmets 1’s huge win on the other green that saw them leap ahead on shot variance.

In fact, the Stones’ improvement is so noticeable that they’re now only 1 point short of matching their points total from the Spring and Summer 2022 competitions… combined.

And the last unmentioned result from Week 3 was the game on Grass Rink 4 between the Unbelievabowls and The Lenny’s, who were reduced down a party of one (Kelsey), due to Jared having an operation and the fact that Naomi can barely walk, but the Unbelievabowls came to the rescue and rotated players through to play alongside Kels, a very sporting move that almost backfired as the abridged Lenny’s forced a tiebreak following the Unbelievabowls’ 9-5 win in the 1st Set, but the Unbelievabowls avoided defeating themselves (As Sue described it), winning the tiebreak and keeping themselves in the hunt for a Top 4 finish.

I will say that it was a very high standard of a game, as 3 out of the 8 touch the jack vouchers were won by the Unbelievabowls… Amanda claimed 2 of them.

And to the teams who complain that they can’t get a drinks voucher for touching the jack, I simply say get a watch and start timing your run.


Grass 1: Fawesome (4pts +10) defeated Buffed Helmets 2, 9-1 8-6

Grass 2: Bowling Stones (3pts -2) defeated Salty Towers (2pts +2), 4-9 5-2 2-0 in the tiebreak

Grass 3: Shapes (3pts +8) defeated Manning Up (2pts -8), 5-7 10-0 1-0 in the tiebreak

Grass 4: Unbelievabowls (3pts +1) defeated The Lenny’s (2pts -1), 9-5 3-6 1-0 in the tiebreak

Grass 5: Macatac 2 (3pts -4) defeated Macatac 1 (2pts +4), 2-7 6-5 2-0 in the tiebreak

Synthetic 1: Ebowla Bad, Ibowla Good (4pts +18) defeated Dynamics, 10-1 9-0

Synthetic 2: Bowled Guys (3pts +5) defeated Jackstreet Boys (2pts -5), 4-5 8-2 1-0 in the tiebreak

Synthetic 3: Team Tommy (4pts +19) defeated Jack Hunters, 12-6 15-2

Synthetic 4: Great Bowls of Fire (4pts +6) defeated CD’s, 8-4 7-5

Synthetic 5: Verse 1 (3pts +8) defeated Crawshaw CC (1pt -8), 5-5 9-1

Synthetic 6: Ten Pin (3pts +13) defeated Stop Drop & Bowl (2pts -13), 3-4 14-0 2-0 in the tiebreak

Synthetic 7: Buffed Helmets 1 (4pts +18) defeated Top Shots, 9-2 13-2

Synthetic 8: SPCG Spinners (3pts +8) defeated The Shah’s (2pts -8), 13-2 4-7 1-0 in the tiebreak


A reminder about ladder separation, it goes:

Points, shots up, then 4-point results, 3-point results, 2-point results, 1-point results… etc.

Captain’s Comments

Peter, Tristan & Pierre, Shapes: “Hell of a game, killed it in the 2nd Set, quality bowling all round, consistent line and length, Tristan 3 votes the MVP”

Sue, Unbelievabowls: “We almost beat ourselves!”

Scotty, Buffed Helmets 1: “Great win, we farewelled Fuzzy in style”

Jonesy, Great Bowls of Fire: “Another team effort, good game from both teams, consistency seems to be the constant in the equation for the Great Bowls of Fire”

John, Manning Up: “The Shapes didn’t leave the jack alone, we only had the mat 3 times all night so we were playing catch up all night, great game all round, just didn’t quite get the result on the last bowl.”

Di, Macatac 2: “Once again we’ve knocked off Macatac 1 just as we did last year, 2-0 to the ladies!”

Scratch, substituting for Fawesome: “It was a good change up, there was mixed feelings as I was letting the bowl go hoping I’d get it close, but really hoping the Buffed Helmets would prevail, but the right team won.”

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