Kernow Petanque

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Boules in the Park

The first of the new Cornwall winter event series took place in Boscawen Park, Truro, on Sunday 26 November, with seven pairs turning out in spite of a less than favourable weather forecast.

The Met Office promised us a 90% chance of heavy rain, gusty winds and a feels-like temperature of only 5 degrees. As it happened there were a few minutes of a light mizzle, no wind and it was reasonably warm with an occasional glimmer of sun - Roy Pemberton (Coaching Inn PC) played in shirt sleeves!

The going on the park piste was good to soft in places, with occasional stony patches and plenty of subtle ups and downs, just to make it interesting. For shooting it was almost entirely boule to boule (as it should be); landing short just bounced over the target boule. A great venue, with lots of activity around, a cafe (good bacon rolls) and toilets near at hand.

And there was the return of an old 'face': Jock Turnham turned up with his son, Mike, for his first Kernow Petanque game in what seems like a long while. Good to see both of them.

And the result? Top place with three wins (OK, two wins and a bye) went to Colin 'Boot' Booth (North Inn PC) and Graeme Kirkham (Tregony). Second were Pete Lynas (Tregony) and Sue Hardy, on 2 wins (including a bye) and +11, and third Andy Rose (Rising Sun PC) and Pete English (North Inn) with 2 wins and +8.

No prizes, but definitely a good event, and a great opportunity for those who were at Brian Stote's coaching session last weekend to put some of the ideas acquired into practice. Or not.

Next in the series is scheduled for 10 December in St Anthony's Gardens, Penzance. Full details nearer the time.


Coaching day in Tregony

A very big thank you to Brian Stote, current coach to the England junior squad and former chair of the EPA Coaching Commission, for a great day of coaching in Tregony today.

Ten Kernow Petanque members took part and benefited from well structured morning and afternoon sessions which ran from first principles - grip, stance, backswing, balance, etc - to some basic elements of tactics and team dynamics.

Brian strongly emphasised the importance of identifying and playing to a suitable landing spot for each boule thrown - plenty of practice landing boules on beer mats! - and the potential benefits of playing 'aggressively'. The latter was illustrated with a trial game played to a maximum of 4 metres from the throwing circle!

All who took part came away with lots to think about and new skills to practice and put into effect: roll on the 2018 season! The Kernow Management Committee will also be looking out for further opportunities to make coaching available to Cornwall players.

The session was a timely reminder of the very useful EPA coaching video (Brian was a major contributor to this, and provides the commentary). It is available to watch on the EPA website:

Finally, a big thank you to Tregony Sports Club for hosting the day and providing a very fine lunch.


Winter league opening postponed

The first round of the Cornwall winter league competition, due to be held at the Star Inn on Sunday 29 October, has been postponed. Please pass this news on to anyone you know who was planning to take part.

The decision has been taken because several players who had expressed an interest in taking part were not going to be available. Discussions are also taking place on a change to the format of the competition, including playing at a variety of different venues around the county.

More news soon.


Cornwall winter events 'on tour'

The first in the new Cornwall winter series of one-off mini-competitions will take place in Boscawen Park, Truro, on Sunday 26 November. (The winter league event which was in the calendar for 19th November has been cancelled.)

This is a doubles event, open to all. There will be three games. Registration at 10.45, play begins at 11.00. Entry is free.

Boscawen Park is on Malpas Road, Truro; this leads off the Trafalgar roundabout. To reach the petanque terrain follow Malpas Road past the main park entrance and continue to a small car park on the right just before the entrance to Truro Cricket Club. There is parking in the car park or on the road. The playing area is under a very large pine tree near the car park.

There are toilets nearby, and a café.

This is the first in a series of winter mini-events, trying out different potential venues and a variety of playing surfaces. Should be fun - just keep your fingers crossed for a good weather forecast!


Kernow charity event

For the second year in a row Colin 'Boot' Booth and Graeme Kirkham took the trophy in the Reg Daddow Memorial doubles competition, held on Sunday 15 October, at the Star Inn, St Day. But only by the narrowest of margins.

After seven rounds of timed games three pairs had five wins: Boot and Graeme, Susan Williamson and Ray Beresford, and Dion Beechey and Rob Sullivan.

Dion and Rob had a final points difference of +10 but Boot and Graeme and Susan and Ray both had +19. Boot and Graeme had won the game they played against Susan and Ray - just! - with a score of 10-9.

Unfortunately the event, intended as the Cornwall region's major charity fundraising event of the year, attracted an entry of only seven teams, only six of which were from the local region. A big thank you to Ged and Ann Barton, who traveled from north Devon to take part and took fourth place.

A total of £150 was raised from entry fees, donations and a raffle and will go to the Little Harbour Children's Hospice, St Austell. The charity was chosen by Lena Daddow, widow of Reg, who was himself one of the founding players of petanque in Cornwall. The competition has been held in his memory since 2006.


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