KGJ Insurance County Cup 1st Round Preview

Newport face Dragons, Prince & Hadley aim for upset, Wrockties face Fields

Last year's runners-up Newport face St Georges in the tie of the 1st round of the KGJ Insurance County Cup. Both teams met in the 1st round back in 2016, with Newport winning, but both teams are much different now. Both teams have started the season well and sit in the top four of the Salop Leisure Shropshire Premier Bowling League so a close clash is anticipated on Bowring. Newport captain Sam Millward says it is a "very neutral green selected so think there should be no excuses as to who played better on the night. We know it's going to be tough as St Georges have had a great start to the season and will be well up for this game." Dragons joint skipper Tony Rhodes says "how tough can you get, Newport with their strength in depth. We will give it a go and see how the results come out." Last year's winners Sir John Bayley open their defence against Wem USC on Monkmoor. The Bayley sit second in the league while Wem have got their season up and running now and did reach the final of a Premier League competition last season played on neutral greens. Castlefields will be favourites to lift this title and face Wrockwardine Wood first up on Bridgnorth. Wrockwardine Wood skipper Rob Jones admits "it is a difficult fixture but one we look forward to." The Fields will be fired up for this one, after going out in controversial circumstances last season and ruining what could have been a perfect season. There are two other all Premier League clashes as Hanwood face Highley at Charlton and Meole Brace and Ifton clash on Prees New Green. Hanwood haven't made their mark on this competition since reaching the Semi Finals about 10 years ago, while Highley are the reigning Shropshire Cup champions. Ifton have an excellent record in the competition recently, being finalists in 2017, while Meole are hoping they can have a good cup run like they have in the Alan Mayhew Trophy in recent years. There are two non Premier League teams hoping to cause an upset. Hadley USC are highly fancied to win the Mid Shropshire League, and take on a Chester Road that have been struggling badly this season in the Premier League. Hadley spokesman Phil King says "we have played on Battlefield in the 2017 Playoffs so have some green knowledge. We have a couple missing but still have a strong squad. We are looking forward to the challenge and this will help with our aspirations for Premier League bowls." Prince of Wales Hotel are previous winners of the Shropshire Cup and relish facing the bigger teams. They play Bylet on Burway and captain Ian Smith knows that "The Prince will have to be at their very best to beat a very strong Bylet team. But we have been known to upset the odds on a number of occasions. We are looking forward to a good sporting game." Bylet are a much different side to before, being a team with top half aspirations and full of confidence, especially after winning on Ifton last season. The last tie is an all Tanners Shropshire clash between two teams at the top of the league, Telepost and Crescent, who meet on the Ponderosa at Severnside.
  • A reminder that dress code does not apply, and that all players must have played one league game. £6 is to be paid per team to the host club.
Second Round Held on Wed Jun 5th 2019
1 Wrockwardine Wood Castlefields At Bridgnorth
2 Wem USC Sir John Bayley At Monkmoor
3 St Georges Newport At Bowring Non-Prem Green
4 Prince of Wales Hotel Bylet At Burway No.2 (Small)
5 Hadley USC Chester Road At Battlefield
6 Crescent Telepost At Severnside No 1
7 Ifton Meole Brace At Prees New Green
8 Hanwood Highley At Charlton

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