Section Three frontrunners Knyveton Gardens got back on track by inflicting a rare defeat on hosts Braeside.

With just six ends remaining, Braeside were in a 12-2 situation. However, strong finishes by Ian Davies (25-13) and John Kellow (31-14) collected 21 shots over the last three ends to give the Gardeners a 10-4 (84-76) victory.

There was disappointment for Pelhams’ David Kerr (33-6) who put the Kinson Club in with a shout at Branksome Park. But two winning rinks, topped by Russell Brown, Edmund Sandell, Roy Taylor and Martin Goss (35-10), gave the Squirrels a shock 80-75 win.

Form team Iford Bridge took over second spot after registering their seventh consecutive win by defeating Milford 10-4 (86-67).

One tied and two successful rinks earned Electric an 11-3 (85-72) win at Swanage. The top return for the Sparkies was recorded by Mike Sykes, Rob Burchell, Richard Haynes and Peter Cutts (24-13).

Kings Park remained in the drop zone despite denting Argyll’s promotion hopes. The Royals secured a 10-4 (79-73) triumph courtesy of Paddy Roche, Ted Greenwood, Mike Smith and Andy Darch (29-10).

  • Section One big guns Boscombe Cliff registered another routine win as they pocketed all 14 points at Wimborne.

Alex Findlay, David Halliday, Kevin Downs and Darren Clark (32-18) silenced the Minster chimes as the Cliff strolled to their 13th victory of the season by a convincing 92-63 margin.

There were also no surprises at the Tower where Southbourne consolidated the runners-up spot by overcoming lowly Alexandra Park 79-70. The hosts had three winning rinks, the best being Bob Read, Chris Broomfield, John Challis and Dean Hopkins (24-11). Mike Stapleton (25-13) salvaged two points for Alex.

There were no fireworks at Knyveton Gardens where Clive Fawkes, Maurice Foord, John Smith and Chris Kane (28-16) featured in a 10-4 (78-68) win for Poole Park. The Gardeners’ best return was carded by Dave Hart (19-15).

But it was not so good for Poole Park A as they went down 11-3 (84-68) to visitors Broadstone-Wessex. Dolphins captain John Cresswell (18-18) and skip Graham Mould failed to cover two Wessex winning rinks, which were headed by Mike Caines, Brian White, Clive Smith and Roy Lench.

Ringwood moved clear of the basement following their 11-3 success at Fordingbridge. With one rink tied, Bob Curtis, Ray Rankine, Ed Melton and Lee Croad (33-12) carried the Foresters to a much-needed 95-57 triumph.

  • Leaders Bournemouth endorsed their lofty Section Two status with a comfortable 12-2 win over third-placed West Moors. Wilf Bennett, Phil Snells, Alan Wilson and Vic Druce (26-12) inspired the Marauders to a 94-78 victory.

New Milton maintained their promotion challenge with an 87-65 home win over Branksome Park. With rinks shared, New Milton went well clear after Roy Nicoll, John Thorpe, Kevin Gilliver and Bill Wallace (28-8) had edged Ron King’s quartet (27-9) for top honours.

Braeside’s promotion hopes suffered a setback after they crashed to a 13-1 (85-66) defeat at Lymington. Fastest out of the blocks for the Lymos was Ken Streek’s squad of Duncan Beck, Peter Drodge and Geoff Mapes (27-15).

Swanmore have slipped down the standings following three successive defeats. Their latest came at Boscombe Cliff where the hosts edged an 84-78 win. The pick of Cliff’s two winning rinks was Ron Sparks, Graham Matthews, David Burgess and Tony Gabb (25-10).

There was no luck for bottom club Highcliffe who narrowly lost 71-70 to Southbourne. With the scores level, Brian Sadler (21-16) collected one shot on the last end to earn the Towermen 10 points.

  • Moordown lost top billing in Section Four following their 10-4 home defeat by third-placed New Milton. The New Forest outfit emerged with a 77-74 victory after Bob Shepperley, Dennis James, Keith Young and David Grant (23-15) had covered Moordown skip John Long (24-18).

Richmond Park took over at the summit after a comfortable 12-2 (91-62) win over bottom club Highcliffe.

Knyveton Gardens continued their winning ways with a 12-2 (77-67) away win over high-flying Poole Park. Jeff Mann, John Bristow, Gus Sinclair and Bob Osler (26-18) were once again the Gardeners’ match winners.

There were nervy times at Broadstone-Wessex where Tony Mesher, Dave Simmons, Mike Sabine and Gordon Tompsett (23-10) covered Wimborne’s three winning rinks to edge an 8-6 (69-63) win for the Broadstone club.

Christchurch slipped into the basement after losing 87-72 at Redhill Park. The Rangers had three successful rinks, the best return coming from Doug Horne, Roger Luscombe, Mike Smith and Terry Horgan (23-10).

  • The top-two clash on the West Cliff resulted in a 73-71 win for Argyll over Section Five leaders West Moors. The Moors’ only winning skip Ken Hoare (29-12) just failed to cover Argyll’s three winning rinks.

Ringwood are third following their 12-2 (89-73) victory over lowly Branksome Park. The top quartet for the Foresters was Alan Ford, Dan Davies, John Davis and Brian Tester (26-13).

It was the same result for Lymington who collected their 12 points at Southbourne. Top rink honours were shared in the Lymos’ 82-78 win by skips Bill Merrett (25-20) and Ian Shiell (23-18).

Ferndown emerged with 10 points after sharing rinks with Redhill in very wet conditions. Harry Greenhalgh, George Harris, Ron Taylor and David Bryant (33-13) were the main contributors to Ferndown’s 78-66 success.

Bottom club Iford Bridge forfeited their match and handed Boscombe Cliff 20 shots and 14 points.

  • In Section Six, Poole Park did their promotion aspirations no harm when overcoming third- placed Bournemouth 11-3 (75-71). Derek Addis, Gordon Wheatley, Mick Wallis and Martin Butcher (24-15) top-scored for Dolphins.

There was a similar situation for second-placed Ferndown. The Stags formation of Len Hughes, Ian Alner, Peter Dodd and Roy Alner (23-14) covered fourth-placed Swanmore’s three winning rinks.

Moordown moved clear of the drop zone following their 72-58 win at Pelhams. With two rinks apiece, Peter Phillips, Mick Gordon, George Webb and David Cooke put the visitors firmly in control.

There was no comfort for the bottom two Southbourne and Richmond Park. Southbourne mustered just four points at West Moors, where the host rink of Keith Fullman, Derek Tilson, Jim Taylor and John Savage (24-16) paved the way for Moors’ 81-71 victory. Richmond fared worse at Milford, going down 13-1 (90-63).