BOWLS: WARWICKSHIRE failed to advance to the regional finals of the Middleton Cup after losing to Somerset in a winner takes all final game at Welford on Avon BC.
Warwickshire needed at least 14 points to top their group, but Somerset edged the game by 132 points to 120.
Martyn Murley (Avenue Coventry), Mal Evans (Sherwood Park), Richard Brittan (Erdington Court) and Alan Apsey (Welford) were 9-0 up after six ends on their way to a halfway nine shot lead.
A six end scoring spree in the second half helped Apsey and co to a comfortable 27-9 victory.
Adam Smith (Avenue Leamington), Jordan Merrett (Avenue Coventry), Craig Carter (Rugby) and Andy Smith (Avenue Leamington) trailed by eight after seven ends but turned that around to hold an eight shot advantage with five ends left.
Somerset shut out Smith’s rink and sneaked a 28-27 win.
Matt Wells (Rugby), Chris Barton (Kings Heath), Keith Wooding (Avenue Coventry) and Tom Millership (Rugby) led by six at the midway point.
With five ends left to play the lead was still six, the visitors nearly wiped out the entire deficit with a five before adding a pair of singles and twos to win 23-18.
Martin Hammond (Three Spires), Steve Taylor (Avenue Coventry), Neil Hancock (Little Compton) and Colin Jacox (Avenue Coventry) saw their early advantage wiped out but recovered to reach fifteen ends level on nine all.
As with most of the other rinks the final ends were dominated by Somerset, the visitors winning this one 16-11.
Liam Pearcey, Brian Boardman (both Rugby), Martin Timms (Welford) and Calvin Wells (Rugby) trailed by a shot after twelve ends.
With six to play the deficit had increased to six, which is where it stayed, Wells and co finishing 21-27.
Mark Smith (Avenue Leamington), Neil Brereton (Welford), Rob Robinson (Erdington Court) and Dan Box (Little Compton) were eight clear at the halfway point, the game swung to the visitors as the next four ends saw a triple, double, five and four scored.
Box and co dropped another couple of fours late on to finish up 16-29 down.