Norfolk’s Middleton Cup hopes suffered a setback with a 132-107 defeat to Huntingdonshire.

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With group rivals Essex taking 20 points from their pool match with Bedfordshire, top spot and a quarter-final place will now go down to the final round on July 7,

Norfolk trail Hunts by 11 points in the standings after picking up only five of the 22 at stake at the Parkway Club in Peterborough.

The home bowlers adapted better to the blustery conditions. Mervyn King’s four finished strongly to beat Ean Morton by seven shots. Philip Barr’s four earned a hard fought draw against international Nicky Brett whilst Wayne Willgress earned what could be a vital two points by ditching the jack with the last bowl of the match to score six shots and win his rink.

Rink scores: Robert Hadingham, Daniel Noble, Jake Willgress, Philip Barr 21 Nick Brett 21; John Tufts, Rob Parker, Steve Winter, Wayne Willgress 21 Trevor Collins 18; John Ottaway, George Tubby, Andy Siely, Darren Rowsell 13 Alex Walton 31; Gary Mallett, Mick Brown, Paul Shackcloth, Mervyn King 24 Ean Morton 17; Max Harrison, Roger Guy, Chris Gaul, Peter Boldero 16 Stuart Popple 17; Sam King, Liam Stevenson, Peter Wilkinson, Mark Turner 12 Tristan Morton 28.

• Norfolk enjoyed derby day success against Suffolk in the second game of the round robin Johns Trophy competition. Norfolk trailed in the early stages and after five ends they were 17 shots down, at 10 ends they had reduced the deficit to 10, but hit back in style over the final stretch to claim 16 of the 22 points available. Norfolk now take 36 points forward in the series into their next meeting with Leicestershire on June 30.

Rink scores: Pam English, Jean Edwards, Mary Johnson, Jan Dearman never looked like losing as they swept to a 26-16 win over J Edgar.

Linda Bennett, Ann James, Carol Neave, Jayne Roylance gradually increased their lead from one at five ends, to return a 23-17 score card against J Paternoster.

Pat Clarke, Mary Watson, Sandra Curtis, Sue Curtis were behind for the first half of the game against M Insley, but refused to be beaten and fought back to win 22-16.

Lilian Barker, Suzanne King, Jackie Devitt, Christine Webb trailed nearly all the way, were level going into the last end and were unlucky to drop a shot to go down 23-22.

Anne Read, Janet Morton, Joyce Webster, Brenda Whitehead were always behind and lost 14-20 to J Rowe. Brenda Venn, Julie Walmsley, Janet rose, Laurie Millbank never really came to terms with the rink and lost 13-22 to S Butcher.

• Norfolk have named an unchanged squad to play in the Regional Finals of the Balcomb Trophy (National Inter-County Two Fours) this Sunday, June 24 at the Newmarket Avenue Bowls Club.

In the semi-final, starting at 10am, Norfolk play Hertfordshire. In the other tie Cambridgeshire take on Leicestershire, with the winners meeting in the final at 2pm for a place in the National Finals at Worthing in August.

• Norfolk’s U25 bowlers have qualified for the National Finals of the White Rose Trophy by beating Leicestershire 41-38 in the Regional Finals held at the Newmarket Avenue bowls club.

Norfolk’s bowlers had to fight hard over the closing stages and it fell to Wayne Willgress’s four to see Norfolk home by successfully defending a single shot lead on the last end of the match. The National Finals will be held at Beach House Park Worthing on August 17 and 18.

Rink scores: Ollie Allen, Matt Flatman, Sam King, Jake Willgress 18 Joe Dawson 15; Max Harrison, John Tufts, Liam Stevenson, Wayne Willgress 23 Patrick Hulbert 23.

• Fleggburgh Private Bowls Club are holding a three woods triples open tournament for the Peter Grimmer Memorial Cup on Sunday, June 24 (1.30pm start)

Refreshments are available with the draw taking place on the day and all proceeds raised going towards Palliative Care (East). To compete contact 01493 368247.

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