Otago teams move to first and second

The Otago Bombers skipped to the top of the Metropolitan Senior A table after a clinical display over Chisholm Links at Balmacewen on Saturday.

With a game in hand and a point clear, the new leader will be hard to knock off top spot heading towards the semifinals next month.

In other games, St Clair earned its first win of the series, knocking over Island Park while the rise of the Otago B52s continued out on the Taieri, with an upset win over Taieri Lakes.

At Balmacewen, the Bombers were never really in danger of being toppled despite three games going the distance in the 4.5-1.5 result.

As usual, Ben Patston set the tone for the home side, defeating Jason Pegler on the 16th before Callum Judkins soon added a win to the tally over Mike Bowman.

Links No5 Mackenzie Gibson managed to hold John McIntee to a half but the result was a foregone conclusion when Jason Hughes and Brandon Hodgson sealed wins.

Links’ No1 Matt Tautari got revenge on Tyrone Ratahi from last year’s final with a barrage of early birdies and an eagle to add to the visitor’s tally.

At Waldronville it was a battle for the wooden spoon between Island Park and St Clair. The visitors won 5-1.

Saint’s No4 Conor Jamison drew first blood for the visitors over Regan Cairns before Ryan Bellamy joined in defeating Park greenkeeper Michael Minty in 16 holes.

The visitors landed knockout blows when Jacob Bellamy defeated Joseph Hancock on the 18th and Matt Crawford defeated Brent Butler 2/1.

Jarden Hammond returned from the birth of his first child to earn Park’s sole game over the improved Scott Mitchell 2/1 while Saints No 1 Tony Giles iced the result dropping an 18m putt on the last hole, defeating Monty Wong for a 5-1 result to the visitors.

At Taieri Lakes, the B52s continued to push for a place in the semifinals with an upset win over the hosts.

Right from the outset, the fixture looked like it was destined for an arm wrestle. The tail matches both went the distance, Josh Boath halving with Henry Hodgson and Hayden Robertson and Will MacLauchlan both finishing all square.

But the momentum swung towards the visitors with the strong middle order of Tom Lee and Matt Weir defeating Matt Mercer and Blair Bennett respectively to seal three games and put the spotlight on the top order.

Lakes No1 Mark Andrews continued his good form from the previous week to defeat Andrew Hobbs on the 17th but B52s captain Steve Horn was the toast of his team, as his 3/1 win over former Otago representative Brett Kennelly proved the difference in the 4-2 result.

The B52s have now jumped ahead of Chisholm Links into second place.

 - Michael Minty

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