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County Scene, October 5

By Cornish Guardian  |  Posted: October 05, 2012

RESPECTED:  Brian Ridgeon has stepped down as a member of Cornwall Football Association's Council.

RESPECTED: Brian Ridgeon has stepped down as a member of Cornwall Football Association's Council.

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Badminton

TWO NEW SINGLES WINNERS AT 30th DUCHY OPEN:

There were two new singles winners, including one with a brace of victories to her name, in the Duchy of Cornwall 30th Open Badminton Championships at Carn Brea Leisure Centre, writes John Tresidder.

In addition, the Devon county squad produced two titles, the Mixed Doubles and Men's Doubles, with Somerset also going home with a brace, the Women's Singles and a share in the Ladies' Doubles.

The event, a tournament in the Badminton England Senior Silver Circuit, boasted a prize fund of £1,340, including £320, for the 16 losing semi-finalists in all five main events.

Day one saw Amy Reddaway and Wojtek Poszelezny, unseeded, lifting the Men's and Women's blue ribband singles events, which attracted a promising entry of 64 and 24 competitors, respectively.

Amy, the second favourite, with her first English Open victory, won convincingly, in the final, 21-12, 21-13, over Vicki Jones, the defending champion and Welsh ranked number three lady, while Wojtek, the former Polish No. 3 Junior, overcame the challenge of last year's finalist, Will Hilton-Jackson, his county compatriot, 21-15, 21-15.

Wojtek, in the quarter-finals, was seen to take quite a scalp, in a thriller, against Chris Hotchen, Gloucestershire, the top seed, winning, 18-21, 21-18, 23-21, with Hotchen denied a hat-trick of Duchy wins.

On day two the Mixed Doubles started with six round-robin groups on the first day and culminated, on the Sunday morning, with the final being won by Jamie Roberton and Claire Hannah, who beat the Cornwall's number one players, James Whetter and Johanna Philp, from the St Austell Bay and Callington Clubs respectively, 21-19, 21-16.

Jamie and Hannah were also thrilled to lift an inaugural Duchy title in the process.

Meanwhile, Amy Reddaway made it a brace of Duchy victories when she teamed up with Phillipa Broadbent (Dorset) to win the Women's Doubles – a glorious first English Open win for Phillipa.

The popular Ladies duo beat Sarah Gray and Alice King, the Sussex/Essex partnership, the top seeds, 21-11, 19-21, 21-19, in a pulsating final.

Sarah was then awarded the Duchy's coveted Sporting Spirit Trophy.

Devon's Corby brothers, Dan and Matt, the second seeds, won their second Duchy Men's Doubles when they accounted for Will Hilton-Jackson, and Mark Burtenshaw, the Sussex Outfit, seeded one, 21-16, 21-19.

Burtenshaw, the champion in 2010 and 2011, was unable to achieve a hat-trick with three different partners, in successive years.

There was an excellent entry of more than 30 players from Cornwall, including numerous youngsters and the Cornwall Youth Badminton (CYB) Under 17 squad, all gaining invaluable experience and practice, for the County Senior Restricted Championships, over the following weekend.

Shane Maton, the County Restricted champion in 2011 and Bron Wotton, won the Plate singles events, with Maton, in tandem with Dave Harrington, going on to win the Plate Doubles. And, on day one, Rose Willis reached the semis of the Ladies' Singles, losing to the eventual champion.

An interesting fact was that Miss Wotton, in the final, defeated her Leedstown cousin Georgia Higgs, who was a London Olympic Flame Ambassador in May, arriving in the aircraft at RNAS Culdrose, with Lord Coe, Princess Anne and David Beckham.

Camborne's 14-year-old Kellen Moore and Amy Polglase, aged 13, coached by Clif Morcom, Redruth, fought through two rounds of the Women's Doubles, to the semi-finals – before going down in their debut senior tournament, 21-13, 21-11, to Sarah Gray and Alice King, seeded one.

And it was a memorable start for Amy, ranked seven at England Under 13 level, last season. The dedicated and personable youngster reaped a notable and well deserved win, when she out-pointed Bron Wotton, the Cornwall first teamer, 21-18, 21-14, in the Women's Singles first round.

James Whetter, Cornwall's number one player, was the recipient of the Best Cornish Player Trophy.

He reached the Mixed Final, (accompanying Jo Philp), as a seed and the Men's Doubles quarter-finals, in tandem with Guy Michell, his St Austell Bay club-mate.

Results, see page 100.

Racketball

CORNWALL TRIUMPH:

Cornwall, in their first outing at this level, came away as unexpected winners of their group of the Inter County Racketball national championship in Winchester.

The team proceed to the next stage of the competition in February against other group winners nationwide.

Team members Peter Madsen (Captain), Jamie Moxom, Chris Lawrance (all Truro Squash & Racketball Club), Rory Brickell and Jon Newton (both Falmouth Sports Club) showed outstanding resilience to pull out of the bag great results over two tough opponents in South Wales and Hampshire.

With more and more players taking up the sport in Cornwall it is great to see success can be achieved in a sport that is fast growing around the county.

Both Falmouth Sports Club and Truro Squash and Racketball Club are buoyant at present with increasing numbers of participants; and both clubs are actively encouraging people to come along and try out the sport.

If you are interested in taking up either Racketball or squash contact Rory Brickell, Truro on 07852 499794, or Siobhan Garland, Falmouth on 07812 177268.

Pool

CORNWALL LADIES:

Cornwall Ladies were at home to Dorset Ladies in this month's match, a team lying in second place in the South West Table and who on the previous outing Cornwall had only managed to draw with.

This time Cornwall ladies were looking for the much needed win.

Cornwall ladies were feeling in confident mood but this didn't show when they lost the first section 6-4.

Not to be disheartened the girls dug in and showed what they are capable of and stormed through to win the next three sections in impressive form, winning, 7-4 8-3 and 9-2, leaving a final scoreline of 28-16 to Cornwall.

A great performance from the team as a whole and a welcome return to the squad for Erika Bone and Vanessa Scott who won 4/4 and was awarded Player of the Match.

Team: Paula Pope, Becky Cocks, Erika Bone, Emma Rowett, Michaela Edwards, Hollie Richards, Amy Edwards, Sarah Gallant, Jen O Brien, Stacey Hancock, Vanessa Scott and Carol Stephens (captain).

CORNWALL MEN'S B:

After beating league leaders Somerset in August, the County B side were hoping for more of the same, when Dorset visited the Q bar in Bodmin.

As ever Cornwall started slowly and trailed the visitors 6-5 after the first session. Cornwall started to ease back into the match with a strong session to lead 13-9 at half way.

Cornwall started to squeeze Dorset, winning the third session 7-4, and the pressure finally told as the home side finished strongly, with giant Cornishman Stu Baker leading the charge for a 7-4 winning final session.

This gave Cornwall an overall win of 27-17 and continues their push up the table.

Man of the match Marc Holmes showed his quality with 4/4 (without missing a ball) and was ably supported by Stu Baker, Andy Barrett and Ryan Cleaves with 3/4.

Cornwall make the short trip over the Tamar this month, where a season defining local derby awaits against Devon.

Football

BRIAN RETIRES FROM CORNWALL FA:

One of the longest football servants in the county has retired from the formal side of governing the game in Cornwall.

Brian Ridgeon, from Falmouth, has stepped down as a member of Cornwall Football Association's Council but will still carry on as Treasurer of the Jolly's Cornwall Combination League. Brian was made a Life Member of Cornwall FA recently.

He was elected on to Cornwall FA in 1997, having been proposed by Mawnan and Penryn Athletic .

He said: "To see the top players in Cornwall in the game playing for their county was fantastic. I was proud to be part of the first visit to Guernsey FA too when they joined the South and West Counties championship."

Brian was born in Malta, the youngest of five boys, to a longstanding military family. His father was a Major in the Royal Artillery and Brian arrived in the UK as a 10-year-old after living in India and Burma after Malta.

Brian has been involved with football since his teenage years when he joined his brother in Falmouth. He played for his engineering college, Flushing Under 18s, Falmouth Docks (where he was an apprentice and later a marine engineer), and Falmouth Town including a spell in the mid-1950s with their first team in the then Cornwall Senior League.

After a successful playing career as a traditional full back during which he was never booked or sent off, Brian joined the Committee of the Falmouth/Helston League (now the Trelawny League) and spent 24 years as their Registrations Secretary. He is now a Life Member of the League. He is also Treasurer of the Cornwall Combination League, a post he has held since 1980.

Brian worked at Falmouth Docks until he was made redundant in 1979, when he took a job as porter at City Hospital Truro, a post he held until his retirement from work. His wife, Sylvia, to whom he was married for 48 years, died in 2002.

He has one daughter, Susan and two grandsons who live in Wiltshire.

Short Mat Bowls

INTER COUNTY CHAMPIONSHIP

Cornwall's Short Mat Bowls county teams have an early start on Sunday to travel to the Dorset Bowls Resort at Bere Regis to face Dorset in the latest round of ESMBA Inter County Championship matches.

Cornwall's Premier Team will be looking to consolidate second place in the group with a solid result against Dorset who they defeated 23-17 at Carnmoggas three weeks ago.

There will, however, need to be a much improved performance from the team after the 27-13 defeat at the hands of Somerset in Taunton two weeks ago.

In that match Cornwall's two England representatives, Peter Hore and Nigel Nicholls, in the Singles scored 10 of the total of counties 13 point total with the Fours recording two points, the Triples 1 and none from the Pairs.

The A Team have a great opportunity to extend their lead at the top of the table against a Dorset team who they comfortably defeated 29-11 at Carnmoggas.

Player availability is a concern for team manager Chris Cawrse with a number of possible absentees preventing the full team being announced at the time of writing.

After winning the National Consolation title four times in the past six seasons the solid start made this year puts Cornwall in a good position to challenge for the Main championship honours.

ENGLAND WEEKEND:

Cornwall's England representatives Peter Hore and Nigel Nicholls travelled to the Midlands on Saturday for the latest practice weekend ahead of the announcement of the squad for the British Isles championships at Potters in Norfolk on November 17-18.

With the team management still trying various combinations of players both played in different teams all day. Nigel won four and lost one while Peter won two games, drew one and lost two.

COUNTY LEAGUES:

The county league programme gets under way this week with 80 teams competing across the four divisions.

Thirty-one are in the west, 19 in the central, 17 in the east and 13 in the north.

One new club join the league in the eastern area, Torpoint replacing Pelynt, who have folded.

American Football

SHARKS HOLD ROOKIE TRIALS THROUGH OCTOBER:

Following a short sabbatical at the end of their tough but successful 2012 season, the Cornish Sharks are looking to build on their achievement.

They won seven out of ten regular season games and qualified for the playoffs, losing to the eventual national runners up Peterborough Saxons, in the quarter finals.

They are holding rookie trials on October 7, 14 and 21 and they are looking for new talent to bolster the squad.

Head coach Brian Smallworth said: "Yes we are looking for talent – what team isn't? So anyone that has experience in any sport would be an asset – we have cricketers, footballers, rugby players, surfers, martial artists, boxers and many others from a variety of backgrounds even skateboarding and table tennis.

"But what is so brilliant about American Football is that you can join the team with little or no team sport experience, be overweight and pretty unfit and we will still manage to find a spot for you if you are willing to learn and put in the training to improve your fitness.

"So if you fancy giving it a go, don't let your lack of experience put you off – the Cornish Sharks have a great track record of taking complete rookies and turning them into great players that are an asset to the team.

"All you need to do on the day is bring some rugby or football boots, a change of clothes in case of inclement weather, a drink and a photo ID such as passport or driving licence – all other equipment is supplied.

"You need to be minimum 18 years old to play for the senior squad but if you are interested and under this age, come and say hello and meet the coaches and we can tell you about your local youth team that might suit you."

Registration will take place at 12.30pm at Colan Recreational Ground, Quintrell Downs, Newquay, TR8 4LB. Training will finish at approximately 4pm.

Speedway

ZAGAR CLINCHES GP PLACE:

Former Trelawny Tigers favourite Matej Zagar has qualified for next season's World Championship Grand Prix series, writes Nigel Walrond.

The 29-year-old Slovenian came second in Saturday's Grand Prix Challenge at Gorican in Croatia after a five-rider run-off.

Zagar, Denmark's Niels-Kristian Iversen, who finished third, Troy Batchelor, Leon Madsen and Ales Dryml had all finished on ten points, with Poland's Krzysztof Kasprzak winning the meeting on 11.

Zagar spent one season at Trelawny in 2003 before moving to Reading Racers the following year, but he was very popular with Cornish speedway fans.

He is no stranger to the Grand Prix series, having competed in 2006 and 2007, and last year he turned down a permanent wild card as it would have prevented him from riding for his Polish league side Gorzow.

Zagar was a Trelawny team-mate of Chris Harris, who rides in the final GP of the season at Torun in Poland on Saturday but seems highly unlikely to be offered a wild card place for the 2013 GP series.

The 29-year-old from Probus has fired a warning shot over the bows of the GP organisers by stating that if he is not invited back into the Grand Prix for next season, he could decide to take a year off the international stage and not represent Team Great Britain in next summer's World Cup.

"I still want to be in the Grand Prix, but I know it is going to be tough to get a wild card for next year," Harris told Speedway Star magazine.

"If I don't get one, I'll just have to look at my options and see what I can do.

"If I'm not in them, I might have a year doing just my league racing, the GP qualifiers and that's it really. I'd just sit out everything else.

"People say I'm not good enough to be in the Grand Prix and the World Cup is just as hard. I seem to do okay in that and I can do a job at that level.

"But if people say I can't do a job in the Grand Prix, then I can't do it in the World Cup either. So what's the point doing it?

"The World Cup has always been good. I had a good one this year. If I'm good enough to go well in that, why can't I go in the Grand Prix?"

It is a disappointing attitude for Harris to take.

He has been given plenty of opportunities to impress in the GP series, with four wild cards in the past five years, but apart from winning the British Grand Prix in 2007, he has too often failed to hit the heights and other riders now deserve their chance.

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