SINCE 1952, the bowling clubs of Seale & Sands and Tongham have played a special fixture every year – the men competing for the MacKenzie Cup and the ladies for the MacKenzie Shield. Both village areas were once part of the same local authority and a Colonel MacKenzie initiated the idea of an annual fixture between the neighbouring clubs.

On Sunday, the MacKenzie Shield was narrowly won by Tongham’s ladies. Last year’s match had ended in a tense draw. However, the Seale & Sands men’s team were victorious and retained the MacKenzie Cup. They will no doubt focus on a hat-trick next year, remembering that Tongham men had won the trophy for the previous six years.

The match is always about great sporting rivalry, while played in the right spirit. Many players from both clubs have been involved in the event over the years. The longest-serving players, still actively participating, are John Green, the Seale & Sands club captain, and Mike Varley who have both involved in the fixture for 41 years.

This year’s match had a special significance. Seale & Sands BC is celebrating its 90th anniversary and club president John Negus congratulated all the bowlers who have appeared in the MacKenzie competitions. Tongham BC president Alex Brady presented Seale & Sands with a card signed by all the Tongham members to mark the occasion.