Friendly victories are followed by friendly rivalry at Spa

Captain Jenny Wickens and president Jean Simmons with the Royal Leamington Spa lady members who attended the Captain's Day gala.
Captain Jenny Wickens and president Jean Simmons with the Royal Leamington Spa lady members who attended the Captain's Day gala.

Last week saw two of the highlights of the Royal Leamington Spa club calendar take place in addition to fine friendly performances from both the men’s and ladies’ sides.

The ladies kicked off the week at The Grange in Rugby where they got off to a flying start in their three-rink friendly, opening up an 18-6 lead after just five ends and going on to win 50-28.

The trio of Betty Mann, Chris Brayne and skip Cynthia Briggs led the way with an 18-8 win and Jean Leyland, Sheena Harris and Bonny Claridge were equally dominant, triumphing 18-9.

The rout was completed by Jenny Wickens who skipped her rink to a narrow 14-11 victory.

Meanwhile, a strong performance from Bill Claridge, Mike Grundy, Fred Bannister and skip Roger Mann saw them sweep aside their opponents 33-14 and help Spa’s men to a 104-91 victory at home to Wolvey in a five-rink encounter.

Andrew Woodward (23-10) was also successful, while Dick Williams drew 17-17.

The emphasis was very much on fun as ladies’ captain Jenny Wickens hosted the traditional midsummer Captain’s Day Gala for Spa’s lady members.

She was joined by 29 other players and a number of non-playing members, including club president Jean Simmons, for an afternoon of short triples games.

Finally, Sunday’s annual battle of the sexes had an added dimension with husband and wife Malcolm and Jenny Wickens the respective captains.

Once again it was the men who took the honours, though they did not have it all their own way. Although Jerry Horne, Malcolm Wickens, Mike Wallace and Ray White led their rinks to victories, the standout performance from Spa’s ladies saw the rink of Sandra Payne, Hazel Baker, Bonny Claridge and skip Sonia Stranks overwhelm their male counterparts 30-14.