On Tuesday 29 October a rink from the Club comprising Alan McKinlay (skip), Alan Richmond (3), Willie Scott (2) and Carol Simpson (lead) participated in the Finnie Kettle. This is a Dundonald competition and this evening’s game was the 150th anniversary of the competition.
Originally it was contested between the parishes of Kilmarnock, Fenwick, Kilmaurs, Stewarton and Dreghorn representing parishes north of the River Irvine and Dundonald, Symington, Craignure, Riccarton, Galston, Tarbolton and Monkton representing parishes south of the river. Over the years the participants have varied and the clubs now involved are Dreghorn & Springside, Stewarton, Kilwinning, Kilmaurs, Dalry Union, Riccarton, Troon Portland, Symington, Dundonald, Galston, Tarbolton and ourselves. There is a draw done on the night and it is a north v south game with the highest up rink in the winning side taking the trophy.
We were drawn against Kilmaurs and the opening end went well for skip and lead – despite the initial absence of our other 2 players!! A gain of 1 shot offered promise but with the arrival of Alan and Willie our fortunes quickly changed! Rapid losses of the following 3 ends and a total of 11 shots put us on the back foot from which there was no real prospect of recovery. If there was to be any consolation we gained 1 shot back in end 5, lost another in the 6th end but picked up 3 shots in the last end to put a little respectability on the scorecard albeit a defeat by 12-5. Our Kilmaurs opponents were gracious in admitting that they got more breaks than we did and that the score line didn’t really reflect the closeness of some ends. For that encouragement, many thanks! It had been a good game against unknown opponents played in the friendliest spirit and with some good curling from everyone.
Overall the South won by approximately 8 shots (I think) so perhaps the 3 shots we gained at the last end did help the cause. Symington, as the highest up rink in the South team won the Kettle. I learned during the post-curling meal from our opponents that they have actually won the Kettle 3 times in recent years so perhaps our performance wasn’t that bad.