Solihull Municipal Bowls Club had not enjoyed their good early-season form recently so were not looking forward to playing the runaway leaders of Birmingham League Division A, Sherwood Park A.
When their visitors arrived, the Muni Club captain noted a couple of unexpected faces in the Sherwood team and quickly altered his bowling order, hoping to gain a small but fair advantage.
The Muni elected for controlled powerplay in the first six ends and took the lead on both rinks. The home fans could not believe their eyes; could this last?
Sherwood, as expected, inched their way back into the game during the middle third, reducing the hosts’ lead to three shots on rink five, and two shots on rink 2.
Could The Muni regain the initiative, or would Sherwood now claim their expected victory?
On rink 5, Muni’s skip, Phil Holmes, called Rob Wilson, John Bentien and Mick Keiths back on to the offensive and took the visitors by surprise to claim a magnificent Muni win by 17-10.
Meanwhile, on rink 2, Gary Langford skipped Muni’s Geoff Wyatt, Nigel Walker and Grahame Spiby, to take four shots on the 14th end before defending their lead over the last four ends to win by 18-14.
The Muni had inflicted the first league defeat of the season on Sherwood Park by 6-0.
Muni B travelled away to Sherwood Park and also claimed a 6-0 victory thanks to Brian Nock, Bryan Jones, John Hanmore and skip Roger Smith winning 30-9.
John Herbert, Andy Botley, Roy Stokes and captain Clive Burbage also won, 17-14.
Muni C went down 6-0 at Bournville B, with Roy Sheridan, Paul Adams, Bob Saunders and skip George Carmichael only losing 18-14 to their high-flying rivals.
The Muni sent a team of new bowlers to play as a mixed four in The Royal Leamington Spa Chamber of Trade-sponsored tournament.
The Muni hoped this would be good experience but the quartet took the competition by storm to reach the final.