East v West of Scotland 2005

4-5 June 2005, Meadows

Eleven people in all took part in this year's East versus West match in the East at Meadows West on June 4th and 5th, though only four were present at the start.  George Anderson unfortunately failed to recover from a bad bout of 'flu in time to play and this threw manager Fergus McInnes's intended programme of matches into some disarray.  However, selection criteria for this event (the results of which do not affect handicap or rankings) are very flexible and by shuffling the sides a little he succeeded in scheduling eighteen matches – advanced with bisques on the first day and level play on the second.  Thus he accommodated people who only wanted to play on one day, people who only wanted to play two games per day, and people (like himself) who had other appointments during the match.

The initial matches added flexibility to the arrangements by finishing very quickly.  Joe Lennon beat the manager +26 with 4½ bisques still standing and Martin Stephenson only just managed to get rid of his before beating David Appleton +25.  David and Fergus consoled themselves with an unscheduled 14-point game.

More players and spectators arrived (Rod and Charlotte constituted the latter, rain having driven them from a camping holiday in Lewis & Harris a day early).  They timed it well as they were treated to a splendid triple by the 9-handicap Martin Stephenson (well, he was 9-handicap when he started it but the handicappers were in session long before he finished it).  David Appleton also had a triple shortly afterwards, but only courtesy of the bisque kindly supplied by Tony Foster.

The rain, incidentally, followed Rod and Charlotte back to Edinburgh but, though heavy at times, it didn't last long and Brian Murdoch's clever bugs stopped the lawns from becoming waterlogged.

The Saturday finished with the East ahead by 5 to 2½.

Chris Dent provided the classy play on the Sunday with +26TPs against David and Rod, though Charlotte took him to +6, and Rod decided to do his first TPO after … well, shall we just say more than 30 years' play?  Jamieson Walker tried hard to turn it into an OTP but Rod had cunningly practised the three-ball ending against Fergus in the previous round and won +2.

Charlotte made a splendid cream tea and Martin provided champagne to celebrate his first TP (of very many, I suspect) and Rod's first (and possibly only) TPO.  The East extended their lead to 13-6, David gave the Piersland Bowl to Fergus and we all went home.  Though not the event the first EvW was (when the new lawns were inaugurated with much jollification) the match was most enjoyable.  Through Martin's triple it certainly fulfilled one of its purposes: to let players try adventurous tactics which they might not feel appropriate if index points of various kinds were at stake.

Envoi for physicists.  In the discussion about Martin's handicap reduction (which of course happened because of his overall standard of play and not anything which took place during the match – how could it, as the games didn't count for handicap purposes) two strategies were proposed.  One was to change his index to a trigger point (e.g. that of handicap 5 or 6), the other was to increase his index by a fixed amount (so that, for instance, if he was 40 points above the trigger point for handicap 9 he would move to 40 points above the trigger point for handicap 6.  Fergus pointed out that we could only adopt one of these strategies: we couldn't determine Martin's position and momentum at the same time.  Quantum theory gets everywhere.  (I think it does, at least; I'm not absolutely certain.)

David Appleton


(East names first)

Day One:
Fergus McInnes (3.5) lost to Joe Lennon (14) -26
Martin Stephenson (9) beat David Appleton (4) +25
* Fergus McInnes lost to David Appleton -10
Tony Foster (3) lost to David Appleton -13TP
Martin Stephenson beat Joe Lennon +10TP
Allan Hawke (10) beat Ian Wright (10) +18
Tony Foster beat Joe Lennon +8
Martin Stephenson beat Ian Wright +20

Day Two:
Chris Dent beat David Appleton +26TP
Fergus McInnes lost to Rod Williams -3
Jamieson Walker beat Ian Wright +12
Allan Hawke lost to Charlotte Townsend -25
Chris Dent beat Charlotte Townsend +6
Fergus McInnes beat Ian Wright +15
Jamieson Walker lost to Rod Williams -2TPO
Allan Hawke beat Joe Lennon +10
* Martin Stephenson lost to David Appleton -9
Chris Dent beat Rod Williams +26TP
Fergus McInnes beat David Appleton +4
Jamieson Walker beat Joe Lennon +5

(* 14-point game, counting for half a point in the match)

Final scores:
East 13, West 6