THE VALE-based Reckers skittles team saw off competition from 31 other sides to power their way to glory at the final Shoot Out tournament of the season in Torquay.
The sun shone and the sea sparkled as the skittles went flying in this multi-regional competition which attracted 32 teams from areas including Wales, London, Gloucestershire, Worcestershire and Somerset to battle it out intensely, culminating in one of the closest finishes in the history of the competition.
There were just 32 pins separating the eight finalists as they lined up for the last round of the competition, played over three days.
The pressure quickly piled on again as the Reckers – all regulars in the Evesham & District Skittles League – realised their final two players each needed to score a spare to win – a tall order at the best of times.
Reckers’ team captain and secretary Russell Knight pulled off a 16-point flattener so it was then down to Richard Townsend to come up with a spare of at least 14 points to draw or 15 to win. In the event, he clinched victory with a 16-spare that handed the Reckers the trophy.
There was more jubilation for the Evesham contingent as Debbie Martin – playing for ladies team the Bosses – won the trophy for highest scoring lady trophy with an impressive 56.
Debbie’s late husband Dave, known as Smarty, was the original organiser of the Evesham teams.
The Reckers are no stranger to winning Shoot Out trophies, having amassed several victories over the past 14 years of entering the competition. They also embraced the Shoot Out Club’s traditional fancy dress party on Saturday night as Gru and the Minions, inspired by the film Despicable Me.
In September the Reckers will return to Torquay to compete in the Butcombe British Skittles Championships.
The Reckers dressed as Minions and Gru (Russell Knight) from the movie Despicable Me. (s)