PETANQUE: Champions again

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The Half Crown Petanque Club at Stockton have won the West Midlands Inter-Club Challenge for the fifth successive year

The 2012 West Midlands Inter-Club Challenge took place at Staunton-on-Wye, Hereford, on Sunday with three pairs from each of the seven participating clubs plus a combined team playing a round robin format.

After five rounds the Half Crown had lost just three of their 14 games and were leading the field. However, in Round 6 they lost all three games to Coventry which allowed Whitnash to take the lead with 12 wins, and Marches pushed The Half Crown to third place on points difference. In the final round Marches played Whitnash and The Half Crown played Worcester in a nail-biting finish. When Marches took two games from Whitnash this put them in the lead even though The Half Crown won their first two games against Worcester.

Another win by Marches would have clinched the title, but a strong effort from Nouri Beladaci and Maurice Rendall for Whitnash held off Bill Wood and Molly Greatorix to set up a compelling final game in which the Half Crown’s Rich Powell and Philippe Bonnet needed to beat the Worcester pair of Philippe Gilli and Craig Maycroft to win the title.

At 5-10 down the title looked to be going to The Marches, but a late rally by Rich and Philippe secured a narrow victory over Worcester and delivered the title to the Half Crown for the fifth successive year.