Wigtown retain Mochrum Cup in thriller

Mochrum Cup winners from Wigtown (standing) and the runners-up from Glasserton (seated) after the final
Mochrum Cup winners from Wigtown (standing) and the runners-up from Glasserton (seated) after the final

A most entertaining final of the Galloway Province Mochrum Cup, sponsored by Alex McCleary Funeral Directors, Newton Stewart, took place at Stranraer Ice Rink last Friday evening, with last year’s winners from Wigtown Curling Club retaining the trophy.

The annual knock-out competition saw seven rinks enter this year and the final was played between Jim Cannon’s team of Christine Cannon, Jak Kane and Debbie Johnstone from Wigtown and Glasserton Curling Club’s ‘Glamorous Grans’ Margaret Ramsay, Elsie McKillop, Helen Smith and Lindsay Galloway.

In a very tense encounter between these two experienced rinks, the ladies from Glasserton got a two at the first end, but the Wigtown foursome hit back with a three at the second. Glasserton moved ahead to a two-shot lead by taking singles at the third, fourth and fifth ends, but Wigtown went up a gear in the sixth, with a two to level things at five all.

An uncharacteristic miss in the seventh end by the Glasserton third due to a sudden kneepad malfunction left the door open for Wigtown to take a big three score and move ahead 8-5.

But, unfazed, the ladies from Glasserton continued to put pressure on the Wigtown unit in the last end and when the Wigtown players failed to clear stones out of the house, Margaret Ramsay found herself with an open hit on the only opposition stone left in the rings to score three, peel the game and go to an extra deciding end. There was a hush in the packed gallery as she powered her last stone down the ice, towards its target. Agonisingly for Glasserton, and despite furious sweeping from Helen Smith and Lindsay Galloway, Margaret’s stone drew past the Wigtown counter, leaving it lying shot and handing the Wigtown team the win.

At the close of play, Galloway Province President Drew Paton thanked both teams for the thrilling final, something all the spectators had thoroughly enjoyed. He also thanked the sponsor, Frazer Hare, of Alex McCleary Funeral Directors, for his continued support of the Mochrum Cup, and then asked Galloway Province member Patricia Boult to present the trophy to the winners along with carved wooden curling stones and present the gallant runners-up with curling-themed china mugs and notepads.