By Simone Ballett

BRECON Pétanque Club hosted the 2021 Welsh Pétanque Association Men's National Doubles last weekend.

The South Wales Bowls and Recreation Centre Pétanque Section (SWBRC PS) was represented by three teams including the 2020 title holders Ian Bailey and Jean-Yves Robic.

After the usual ranking pool games in the morning session, the top eight teams were ready to start the knock-out stage of the competition.

Len Field and Ken Agius (SWBRC PS) were drawn against the strong Cardiff pair of Sean Smith and Roger Green (Monskstone PC) but registered a good 13-8 victory to see them through to the semi-finals.

The remaining Sully teams were drawn against each other.

The current champions, Ian and Jean-Yves, had to battle hard against club mates Scott Murray and Jake Caston and just managed to clinch a narrow 13-12 victory that got them through to the semi-finals.

In the other quarter-finals, Brecon PC beat Pontyclun PC and Caerleon PC defeated a Brecon PC team.

The semi-finals line-up had the potential to produce an all Sully finals and Len Field and Ken Agius (SWBRC-PC) made sure to book their place in the final by convincingly defeating the last Brecon pair 13-5.

The second semi-final was more difficult for the title holders, Ian and Jean-Yves, against the experienced pair from Caerleon PC, Kon Tomczyk and Stephen Snudden.

After taking an early lead, Ian and Jean-Yves couldn't capitalise on their lead and let the Gwent pair come back into the game.

It was a nail biting time, the game was close, the outcome uncertain and after nearly two hours of play, the Sully players assured their place in the final with another narrow 13-12 win.

The final was set and it was to be an all SWBRC PS contest.

Ian and Jean-Yves quickly took the lead scoring four in the first end and kept control of the game.

They had regained their morning form and contained their club mates come back, fired up by accurate pointing by Len Field and excellent shooting from SWBRC PS new signing Ken Agius.

The score progressed slowly but Ian and Jean-Yves were still 10-8 ahead after an hour of play.

The last few ends were fiercely contested with both teams looking for the win but Ian and Jean-Yves prevailed, exploiting a rare mistake by Len and Ken to win the game 13-10 and retain their title.

Another great display by the South Wales Bowls and Recreation Centre Pétanque Section players, with the three teams making the top 8 and players taking the top four places, confirming the dominance of the Sully players in Welsh Pétanque during 2021.