MacDonald loses thriller in Edinburgh

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The talented teenager’s departure from the junior singles was surprisingly emphatic, Guernsey’s Matt Le Ber handing out a 21-8 early morning drubbing to the young member of the Jersey Bowling Club.

MacDonald was clearly saving his best for the afternoon session, when he faced the favourite for the title, top Scottish skip Billy Mellors, in the semi finals of the senior singles – and he gave the Scot a fight before losing, 21-20.

Impartial spectators said it was a game he deserved to win, and several had harsh words to say about what they described as the delaying tactics employed by Mellors at a crucial stage late in the game.

Mellors, who was struggling with his delivery in heavy rain, looked doomed when he trailed 16-20, but scored a double to reduce the deficit, then left the green for several minutes – to fetch a chamois leather to dry his bowls.

‘He was away too long,’ said one observer.

‘It was nothing but a calculated ploy to keep Jamie on tenterhooks,’ but MacDonald denied that the wait had upset his concentration.

‘I didn’t mind at all,’ MacDonald said last night.

‘Obviously there are times when you need to leave the green, and I quite understood what Billy was doing.

It didn’t put me off at all, and it wasn’t until afterwards that I heard some people murmuring.

As far as I am concerned, it was nothing at all.’ When Mellors returned at 20-18, MacDonald kept his cool, and twice built up a match lie, forcing Mellors to dig deep.

Showing his class, the burly Scot scored a double and a single to tiptoe into the final.

‘I started slowly, and was 10-3 down after 8 ends, but I could sense that Billy was finding it difficult in the rain, so I got my head down, and came right back to lead, 20-15,’ MacDonald said.

If the young Jersey star had won, he would have found himself facing 23-year-old Welshman Kevin James in tomorrows final.

In the triples, MacDonald’s clubmates Kenny Sillars, John Lowery and Alan ‘AQ’ Quemard came unstuck against the Scottish champions, Graham Thomson, John Docherty and Robert Brown, who led throughout and returned a 17-6 card.

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