RINGWOOD’S Lee Croad was crowned singles champion at the Bournemouth & District Bowling Association finals day following a dramatic victory over New Milton’s Steve Hockham.

Croad, champion of champions in 2011 and triples winner last year, was seeking his third win, while Hockham was also no stranger to finals day having finished runner-up in the 2011 triples.

Despite four or five heavy showers, both played tremendously well and the score was locked at 15-15 after 17 ends before Croad won the next three ends to hold a 19-15 advantage.

Then, with his Ringwood opponent holding two match-winning shots, Hockham drove the head and took the jack into the ditch to leave Croad 19-18 ahead.

Croad added the B&D silverware to his New Forest BA title he also won this summer.

And in what turned out to be the final end, Croad wrested out Hockham’s shot wood to again lie game, with the New Milton man failing to alter the situation with his last wood.

It was one of seven titles decided under overcast skies at Richmond Park Bowls Club with the champion of champions’ final (2012 club champions) featuring 2011 runner-up Mark Tomberry of Alexandra Park and Pelhams’ David Kerr.

Tomberry established a 13-4 lead after 10 ends before Kerr hit a golden patch and reduced the deficit to just three shots (15-18). However, Tomberry regrouped and drew off the three shots needed to become champion of champions.

The final singles competition was the Officers’ Trophy between Barry Gage of Poole Park and holder Trevor Smyth from Broadstone-Wessex.

Smyth found the line immedi-ately and raced into a 14-0 lead before Gage closed the gap to 14-6. But it was in vain as Smyth again kicked on to claim the title 21-7.

The pairs final was between Poole Park’s Pat Ravelin and Chris Weekes and Alan Attenborough and Brian Cuckson from Fordingbridge, with the Turks duo racing into a 7-0 lead after three ends.

The Dolphin pair then picked up five shots over the next four ends before Attenborough and Cuckson went into overdrive and quickly established a 20-5 lead with Ravelin and Weekes deciding to shake hands and congratulate them on their victory.

The fours competition was an all-Bournemouth affair between Harry Tabeart, Barry Purkiss, Jim Cotton and Malcolm Gray, and Colin Bingley, Peter Shearing, Bill Belcher and Terry Chivers. An early finish appeared to be on the cards after Chivers’s quartet had picked up a seven to go 12-2 ahead but the gap had reduced to 20-19 by the penultimate end.

Chivers stopped the rot by picking up one shot and his team were crowned Kings of the Fours following a tense last end.

Colin Bingley, Vic Druce and Gerry Potts captured Bournemouth’s second title of the day when they saw off Fordingbridge’s Stan White, Keith Guest and Roy Moretti in the triples final with a concession coming when the scoreline was 22-14.

The over-65s’ pairs featured last year’s singles champion David Swindells and his Knyveton Gardens team-mate Jim Flexman against Lymington’s Ken Carter and Bill Merrett.

The Lymos duo won the first eight ends to take an 11-0 lead before the Gardeners closed the gap to 11-9 by the 13th end, only to drop successive threes.

With the score at 19-12, Swindells and Flexman gracefully conceded the match and the title.

Trophies were presented by Bournemouth & District Bowling Association president Rob Burchell.