By Simone Ballett

LAST Sunday 16 Welsh teams had gathered at the Monkstone Pétanque Club, Cardiff, to compete in the annual Monkstone Open Doubles.

The South Wales Bowls and Recreation Centre Pétanque Section had sent a four-team strong contingent with two other members paired with players from other clubs.

This was the first competitive outing for many new members of the SWBRC Pétanque Section.

After the usual ranking pool games in the morning session, Tony Smith and Nai Kongchung had top ranking, with Jean-Yves Robic and Len Field (SWBRC-PS) finishing 2nd, Ian Bailey (SWBRC PS) and Sean Smith (Monkstone PC) in 3rd position, Julie Bailey (SWBRC PS) and Kon Tomczyk (Caerleon PC) in 4th place, all qualifying for the knock-out phase of the main event.

The other SWBRC PS teams had a more difficult morning and failed to make the cut for the main event but were ready to give their best in the Plate competition.

In the Plate, the quarter finals were a step too far for the SWBRC PS teams with Sonia Ford and Pat McCarthy and Linda and Alan Thomas only narrowly beaten 13-12, while Sue and Tim Roberts were defeated 13-2 by Tom Mills and Phil Roberts (Monkstone PC) who will go on to win the Plate.

The main event quarter finals saw Jean-Yves and Len struggling against an experienced pair from the Monkstone PC but eventually secured their place in the semi finals with a 13-11 win.

Ian and Sean had an easier run and defeated 13-4 a team from the Wheatsheaf PC, while Julie and Kon brushed aside another pair from the Monkstone 13-0.

In the semi finals, Ian and Sean had a tough game against Tony Smith and Nai Kongchung (Monstone PC), but sealed their place in the final with an 11-10 win at the end of regulation time. The other semi final with Jean-Yves and Len, against Julie Bailey (SWBRC PS) and Kon Tomczyk (Caerleon PC) saw victory going to the pair from Sully 13-6.

The final was a repeat of the Pontyclun Open Doubles final of May 2021 but this time, despite Jean-Yves and Len taking an early 5-0 lead, they couldn't compete with Ian and Sean who took the game 13-5 and were worthy winner of the 2021 Monkstone Open Doubles.