The 2012 ECBA Champion
of Champions event was held over the weekend of 9th-10th June
at the Norbreck Castle Hotel, Blackpool.
The competition already
had a clear leader with only 2 games played. Only Sunderland
had won both of their first 2 games, putting them a point clear
of Cambridgeshire and Northumberland who could only manage a
win and a draw.
After 4 games Sunderland
still led the way, having won all their games. The only other
undefeated team left were Cambridgeshire, having dropped just
one point. Third place was held by Essex who were on 6 points,
just one further back. These 3 were clear of the rest and it
already looked as if one of them would be the eventual winners.
By the end of Saturday's
play, with 5 games played, we were down to 2 clear leaders. Sunderland
had maintained their perfect record through the day and were
on 10 points, while Cambridgeshire were just 1 point behind.
The best of the rest could manage no more than 6 points.
Sunderland continued their
winning run into Sunday's first game, but Cambridgeshire lost,
allowing Sunderland to extend their lead to a more comfortable
3 points with just 3 games to go.
Sunderland's 7th win out
of 7 saw them take an unassailable lead as their closest rivals
failed to keep up. Cambridgeshire lost again, causing them to
fall behind both Durham and Northumberland, albeit just on shots.
The upshot was that while Sunderland were now on 14 points, the
best that anyone else could manage was 9 points, giving them
an unassailable lead with 2 games still to go.
Despite the job already
having been completed Sunderland rounded off a perfect weekend
with 2 more wins to complete a perfect record of 9 wins out of
9, finishing a massive 7 points clear of both runners-up Durham
and third placed Northumberland, a tremendous achievement.
Winner: Martin Campbell
There were double winning
starts for Northumberland, Cambridgeshire, Durham and Sunderland.
With all of the other teams having already recorded at least
one loss, these 4 teams were already 2 points clear of the rest
of the field.
It was not until everyone
had played 4 times that clear leaders emerged. Cambridgeshire
had dropped just one point so far, however,the chasing trio of
Northumberland, Durham and Sunderland were only 1 point behind.
Five games into the competition
and with Saturday's games completed Cambridgeshire still led.
They had another win under their belts and had moved on to 9
points, but it was now only Sunderland who were able to keep
in touch. Their 8 point tally put them in a clear second place
while no one else had more than 6 points, so it looked as if
Sunday's play was going to be a two horse race.
The top 2 teams took on
one another in Sunday's opening game which was going to be crucial
to the outcome of the event. And it was Cambridgeshire come out
on top, maintaining their unbeaten record and lifting them 3
points clear of Sunderland and Northumberland.
The next two games saw
Northumberland lose twice to fall out of contention and behind
Suffolk, while Sunderland recorded two wins, however the leaders
matched this, allowing them to take an unbeatable 3 point lead
into the last round of games.
The top two teams finished
off with wins, Cambridgeshire finishing unbeaten on 17 points,
3 points clear of Sunderland while Suffolk were a further 4 points
back in third.
Winners: Ian Blunsten
& Amy Foulkes (Cambridgeshire)
The joint leaders after
2 games were South Tyneside and Durham who ere the only teams
to have won 2 out of 2.
However by the time the
third set of games were completed Durham were out on their own
and with 4 games under their belts Durham were already 3 points
clear. They had won all of their games and were sitting on 8
points, while the best of the rest were Suffolk and Cambridgeshire
who were on just 5 points, while a further 4 teams were on 4
points. Already it looked as if everyone else was playing for
the runner-up spot.
Saturday's final game saw
Durham make their first slip, a draw with Hertfordshire gave
them their first dropped point of the weekend. However they held
a 2 point lead over Suffolk who were now on their own in second
The top 2 teams both had
2 wins at the start of Sunday's play, while behind them the field
was spreading out, leaving Essex in third place.
However, while Durham took
another win in their penultimate game Suffolk lost to Essex which
meant that the two of them swapped places in the standings while
that result put Durham 3 points ahead with one game to go, assuring
them of title.
Durham duly won their final
game against Essex, to finish the weekend unbeaten. However that
loss dropped Essex all the way back down to 4th place as both
Suffolk and Sunderland won to leap over them and finish second
and third respectively.
Winners: Carl Pearson,
Stephen Walker & David Storey (Durham)
There was a 3-way tie
for the lead with 2 games played, between Northumberland, Suffolk
and Durham, each of whom had won both their games.
However with 4 games played
the clear leaders were the still undefeated Suffolk team, while
Northumberland and Durham sat 2 points behind.
Suffolk finished Saturday
off with their 5th win. They still held a 2 point lead although
it was now Durham were alone in 2nd place as Northumberland lost
to fall away from the lead battle.
Suffolk and Durham both
recorded wins in Sunday's opening round of games, they were on
12 and 10 points respectively. That pair of teams were now some
way ahead of a group of 4 teams who were on 6 points, fighting
it out for 3rd place.
The crunch game came in
the next round as the top 2 played one another. A loss for Durham
would see them out of the race, but a win would put them right
back into the hunt for the title. And it was Durham that came
out on top to see them draw level on points with Suffolk.
The penultimate set of
games saw Durham go on to record another win while Suffolk lost
again, taking Durham into a 2 point lead with just a game to
Sadly it was at this point
that the North Tyneside rink had to pull out of the competition.
One of their players had fallen ill, meaning that they were unable
to complete their games. Unfortunately that last game was to
have been against Suffolk and might therefore have been crucial
to the outcome of the event.
After some discussion it
was agreed by the Durham and Suffolk teams, in conjunction with
the Chairman, that the fairest thing to do would be to remove
all of North Tyneside's results from the competition. This left
Suffolk and Durham level on points with Suffolk already having
completed their games and Durham needing only a half dozen shots
to secure the title.
As it was Durham recorded
a comfortable win which meant that they would have finished top
regardless of whatever Suffolk's result had been if they had
been able to play their last game. Durham finished on 14 points,
Suffolk on 12 and Northumberland finished in 3rd on 10 points.
Winners: John Leonard
Jr, Stephen Templeton, Ian Clarke & John Leonard Snr
With the exception
of one session where Northumberland briefly took the lead, Durham
spent the whole of Saturday in the lead.
At various points their
advantage was as much as 3 points, but by the close of play their
lead was just a single point over Cambridgeshire.
They were on 28 and 27
points respectively, while third place was a tie between Sunderland
and Suffolk who were on 24 points, followed by Northumberland
and Essex who each had 22 points.
On into Sunday and it was
quickly becoming a two horse race. Durham still led that way,
but it was Sunderland who now emerged from the pack to be their
Sunderland then took the
lead after the penultimate round of games and finally hung on
to a 2 point lead to take the title. They finished on 50 points,
while Durham were on 48 points, both teams well ahead of the
third placed team Northumberland who were on 40 points.
You can find a full
set of results here.