Stopforth Stars in Winning Start for Bath

April 26th 2016

Bath’s Parkstone Trophy season got underway on Saturday with a home match against Taunton, the team that had topped the division last year.

The decision to field a strong doubles pairing to ensure victory very nearly backfired as the Bath pairing of John Grimshaw and Peter Miles lost against Stephen Custance-Baker and a particularly inspired Derek Beard, who finished the game in style with his partner having been pegged out. Fortunately Richard Stopforth came to Bath’s rescue by tearing up the form book and securing an excellent win against Tim Jolliff. Jonathan Wolfe could consider himself unfortunate to again lose narrowly to Andrew Willis in a tense match but this left Bath leading 2-1 after the morning session.

The match score was soon level in the afternoon as Jolliff rapidly dispatched with Willis, who didn’t take croquet again after making what proved to be a critical error in only the fourth turn. Once Grimshaw had defeated Wolfe, all attention turned to lawn 2 with Bath needing just one more win to secure victory. Stopforth was unable to maintain his excellent form against a still inspired Beard however Miles, trialling a new casting style in the hope this might cure his recent nervy hoop-running, was able to secure the victory required for Bath against Custance-Baker.

The inevitable return to the team of captain and talisman, Roger Hayes, can only strengthen the team and Bath are looking forward to the season ahead.